my HP laptop's harddrive crashed and did not come with any installation disks, I don't have backup disks with me, can I instal the same version of windows 7 using the key on the back of my laptop. If possible from where can I download windows 7 home premium 64 bit (ISO).

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Last Post by rubberman

You will either need to purchase a new Windows 7 installation disc (with new key) from Microsoft, or get one from HP. Getting one from HP for your specific system will probably be better as it will contain all the drivers you need for the HP hardware cruft that your system has. Alternatively, you can get and install Linux (free) on a new disc and access what is left of your data on the old hard drive. An external esata/usb carrier that you can plug your old drive into for data recovery purposes after replacing the system drive will cost you $25-$50 USD.

Myself, I would go the Linux route as it has replacement tools for most MS stuff (LibreOffice vs. MS Office, etc), as well as much better system monitoring tools. The biggest issue is WiFi device support. You should be able to deal with that at the wireless.kernel.org web site. The site used to be a private open-source project, but is now sponsored and managed by kernel.org, part of The Linux Foundation I believe. As a result, it is much more up-to-date with drivers for various devices and Linux versions. I have found it invaluable for a number of years to get my Linux laptops to work with the built-in WiFi hardware nicely.

Edited by rubberman

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