I want to install my Operating System (OS) fresh .

                   The official HP Media kit site 

                   If  you are changing out a mobo (motherboard) , see here.
                             I will attempt to show all ways, to do this, both right and wrong to illustrate why.

There are only these ways to get a fresh load of the OS (whatever in the  year 2017 now) OS = Operating-System.
The first facts to learn are Compaq  issues, "Compaq was acquired for US$25 billion by HP in 2002.[5][6] "(wiki says)
That date in important to you , in that, after that date, HP added the recovery partitions  for XP  and the F11 key to recover XP, before that date, only recover CD;s worked to restore the PC's OS.
HP sold the disks from 2001 to 2006 with real Microsoft Disk 1, of 2 or 3, the other 2 disk are HP drives , then HP apps.
I do not know the date that HP starting putting on F11 recovery partitions to there COMPAQ labeled. PCs from 2002 to 2013 (2013 is the last Compaq I'm told. (my guess 2006)
HP also sold PC's with IBM OS2 and Linux and even Freedos. (back to 1984 even DOS !)
Microsoft TODAY, only supports W7 up.
HP the same  rule  but adds, over 10years old  from last one sold (not first), has no  support  (but always look first) HP has pages listing all Retired, legacy PCs.  (a 1 minute  look there and bingo)

The best way is always F11 (2006 and newer PC's)   if the HDD is bad F11 is now dead, If the HDD (SSD) has corrupted HP partitions F11 will fail. (only media installs can work now)

  1. The HP F11 key   If the PCs HDD was SLAMMED?,  if this fails ? see the next line.
  2. From the HP web  site above. link.  The real HP official Media kit. ( but after 10+ years, this ends this support)( I think 10 years after this model was last sold, is the rule)
  3. Buy a $120 a MICROSOFT kit  in a box in a store. (real) or online.
  4. Or at Microsoft.com sells W7/W10 retail  but does not sell W7 in stores, and W7 is only offered at MS with only a real retail KEY , it asks you for the key or fails to download!
  5. Microsoft does not sell OEM install media of any kind to the public, in fact typing that in on the MS W7 download page gets you FAILED. (then tells you call HP, and HP says 10 year rule Failed)
  6. This site is endorsed by WALMART,  Trinity Supplies.( finding good respected sources is not easy)
  7. There is a tiny chance you can find used, OEM HP disks for sale on ebay. but must match your PC,    OEM is what you have, and works with you PCs' OEM COA sticker license. Dell over HP will not work.,
  8. Go to some hackers site and buy some ISO's CD's or what ever.?  many are counterfeits.  (don't) most are full of Viruses, rootkits and malware. (AVOID! )
 In all cases make sure your COA KEY works with your install media, or it is all just a wasted effort.
Windows 10 will fail on many older PC's. (10 years or older is nice  rule of thumb, but dead makers of chips, always wins the bet!) and dead makers of peripherals vast. MS is clear on the requirements!
A PC is just the sum of it's parts , if you remove most things,  sure W10 installs on more machines how can it not?  (the rage of parts nears the Infinate now, ever count the numbers of printers sold lasts 20 years)?
The first level if support is your MOBO the motherboard , if this fails, all bets are off, no? Lets say that nForce chip fails. (oops)!
That is a fact, because  some chip makers now DO NOT EXIST and that means there is no drivers being produced from any dead chip makers... (a hard cold fact of life this) Things (Companies) do die.
Wiki has  list of all the dead chip  makers, if you get bored.  (both the makers or the product line can go DEAD !) many chips  go dead at XP or VISTA. Facts are facts... do your research first.
Case in point my HP8540 W10 fails to ever get my 2000 year Vista flat bed scanner to work (was ok in W7) and my HP security software apps and drivers fails. (and more ...)
 (HP warned me it would, but I don't need it)
My finger print reader is dead., and the HP BIOS flash APP fails, because it fails to use Freedos, the SP12345.exe file only runs under W7 and I had to hack it with FREEDOS to fix it. (seen here)
What is true is many chips only run under XP, and never vista up.
It is also very true that  most W7 drivers do work on W10 but not if the Certificates are expired and for sure missing. (the new GOD at Microsoft is CERTIFICATES)
The big limit is age. and
1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster processor or SoC
1 gigabyte (GB) for 32-bit or 2 GB for 64-bit (of RAM)

Warning 2:
 W10, if installed on  fresh new HDD, can fail 2 ways,now ; one the OS can not find drivers for this old PC, and two the new rules for W10 strict tests on Driver Certificates. (stinks)  IMO.
If say a  driver works perfect in w7,  like a (3com,  3C905c NIC card,circa 2002) but the certificate is dead now, wrong, missing or gee timed out, W10  , fails top load it. BAM ethernet is dead.
This new W10 rules undermines PnP in a whole new way, sadly... (but oddly works as an upgrade , the W7/8,  upgrade in fact relaxes the Certificate rules...)
A quick fix is to remove the dead card, and put in a new card, wash wear repeat ,cry, go broke. 
 Some chips can not be replaced at all, ever. (VGA , sound no problems) but what about say a Nforce chip (OOPS)
related to all this is....
This is important if you upgraded W7 then later your HDD died, and you fresh load now, W10 , SURPRISE !,  W10 insaller kills some  drivers dead and NO CURE POSSIBLE, short of calling the chip maker next)
Do not hesitated to go the the bad chip makers web site and see if the driver is there, even just  W7 driver. (avoid hacker sites, with names like freedrivers-bla-bla-com. the word is INFECTED)

WOW ! (secret driver pages)
I found that HP has and FTP server full of drivers, as seen here.  (cool no?) (if you know your SP12345.exe file name,  well here they are.

This web page , here called "drivers4U"  , I found doing a site: search , points to the above HP server for , COMPAQ in this way.(hint change the name before my SITE: expression)

Why run XP?, it sucks.

Quote( italics are mine)  ( rumored as SAFE)  (Yoda says" Luke this is your only hope"

PAUL. T , rated Provost  at HP forum, says:

HP SAID, they no longer sell recovery media for your model.so... (Best I can tell is if the last PC sold (of the series) was older than 10 years old (not first, last) then support ends.)

However, this non-HP vendor still does.


 Your PC originally came with Vista 32 bit (or fill in the blank), and that is the only recovery disk set available.


The time to buy recovery disks (or make them as the book that came with said PC told you day1)
 Is buy the disks from HP the first week of ownership, don't wait for 10 years then wonder why they are gone... (rend rant)

If you are trying to get XP running?, (why?, it's a Virus magnet) you will have a hard time.
The PC if still not slammed, and has an origional HDD, still (rare for sure)  then the HP MAGIC key works it will  take you back to 2001, year (XP). (or what ever your PC is)
Slammed means,  someone juked all the HP partitions,(all or some, it's Slammed)
One only needs to power on, and while running, begins, 1sec later tap over and over the F11 key (some PCs use F10 ,RTM , read your manual)
This magic key is called HP Restore and Recovery, (it is just a Virtual CD hiding here in this partition )

Power off, count to 60,  power on, hit F11 over and over, bingo?. (worst case way to get F11 going...) ( if the Laptop battery is bad , remove it  now)
If the PC was SLAMMED with  MICROSOFT (MS) disk OS, for any reason , update etc, the F11 key is now dead.  Microsoft will erase all HP's MAGIC.
F11 fails for these reasons:
  1. older than 2006 many PC's do  not have it F11. Some only have a F10 key and needs media to work.(like seen on old COMPAQs)
  2. HDD is bad. or was bad long ago and replaced.
  3. The HDD is corrupted any of 1million ways.
  4. You gander at the partitions seen here and the recovery files are missing, if the HP tools is missing, then  the BIOS "Day1" recovery too , is now missing now. XP looked like this.( 16 long years ago, wow)

F11 is a Virtual install CD located on your brand new just bought  PC's hard drive. that is what it was. The BIOS knows where it is, and if you damage that linkage , F11 fails.

Microsoft still sells W7 , buy and find the 350 updates , good luck with that...
W10 , installing  it is free of cost at MS , do so , see if it  runs ok, if not remove it (inside 30 days if upgrade from W7). (only Activation costs money)
Really ,W10 is the better choice,  if possible?  (W10 does not support vast old erobsolete chips in your old PC, this is W10's only Achilles' heel)  PCs over 10 years old can be very very problematic.
In fact MS says 2013 is the dividing line on old. (if you expect little to work (expectations vary with humans) it can run fine.  (heck some only use there PC to  use notepad or only MS Solitare)
If you want W10 to look like an older OS?, try these ideas, run Windows classic shell on any PC W7 and newer and make it like you want,
This next linked page  covers slammed, BIOS FLASHING and lost BIOS PASSWORD cures.

I think only XP sucks! (see why here)

MEDIA 101:
Microsoft and HP both made Media, media comes in many forms,  CD, DVD or USB STICK (or MS sends you and ISO and you make up what ever you heart  desires)  (ISO is  CD/DVD image file standard)
No lie USB memory sticks load the OS 2 times faster or more.  SDmem , even faster. 
What I do in most cases is , get the ISO and burn the memory USB stick using RUFUS (free)
Learn that the COA needs to match the Disk (media)  You can not mix COA types willy nilly. (sorry but OEM is like $20 OS and retail is like $120 they are not EQUAL at all)  See the OEM codes here.
It's like buying endzone tickets and then sneaking in to Box seats, (how does that work for you?)
The disks from HP are always in 2 forms,   (all are OEM disks)
2006 and older are 3 more more disks  , MS disk1, HP disk2, driver, HP disk 3 , HP apps. and so on.,
The same year or next HP makes huge disk with there own Windows installer and drivers and apps.
HP does not sell media kits for legacy PC's..  Thus my page here !

MS disks come in vast forms,  and each has its own rules.  In short.  (all MS disks lack the HP drivers and all HP App's) { if you use this disk and HP dropped driver support after 10 years what  then?}
Retail,  media., this disk installs on any PC made, and you must have a COA license key matching this CD.   This is what some call Full Version , (aka, "for a NEW PC")
Generic OEM, media,  only work on specific PCs with specific OEM COA keys.   ( seen sold with bad HDD or Bad other hardware)   I avoid these.
Upgrade only media.... I mostly useless, after used 1 time.  avoid these.
MS web site (download) now has ISO files for W7 and w10 , the W7 will not download unless you submit a valid W7 Retail key, OEM keys fail here, The W10 lets you make Disk or USB stick with no download checks.
MS does not sell or offer any VISTA or XP or older OS now.  IT'S DEAD now.

Your HP  COA key is useless for all MS real media installed.  (one exception? the 2016 free W10 upgrade)
OEM means "original equipment manufacture" this means its a special disk that MS sells HP under contract, (think discounted for 1million copies and dirt cheap to HP)
Not only that , but the disks can be 32bit , 64bit or dual........ buy carefully,  and read all words of the seller like "(this disk has no COA keys!)"

Show and tell time.   ( a trip down memory lane... wow)
(if the F11 key is dead, or hdd dead and now replaced , the only sure is a CD or making and ISO file from one and burning  USB stick with RUFUS, free program.
The photos below are from the good to the bad and then the ugly.
I never use CDs how , I use ISO flash USB sticks (Pen drive/ key drives) to load any OS, its far faster, that way and avoids problems with relic 1/2 dead old CD rom drives.(endless)

This is a real HP disk, that is called and OEM disk, no it's not a MS disk; it's HP's disk,   that contains, XP with SP3, all HP drivers and app's, etc, as the PC came new, but with updates from MS (SP3)
HP began using there own disks starting in 2006 PC's by HP.

Early PCs from HP had a real MS disk 2001 to 2005, and had, many disks to load Windows then load drivers and then to load HP APP.s.  This practice bundling (MS disk from HP) ended in the year 2006.
This is  an OEM disk, and will only work with your OEM license key, (COA tab number)
A real OEM disk from MS. (not sold in stores, it's not a Retail disk.)

As we all know MS sold disks over the counter,  those are called RETAIL full version disks, using any MS upgrade disk now,will mostly just fail, avoid upgrade disks.
Upgrade disks fail when the HDD dies, and is replaced and you then need a real disk, so, avoid it like the plague.
HP OEM disk do load to any new HDD, if the disk and COA matches say old PC.

The Windows XP disks were sold from 2001 to 2009 (mostly ) and the top cover, changed, many times to make counterfeits harder to do. (adding Holograms, etc)
June 30, 2008, is the end date for Windows XP retail sales and OEM support disks.
In all cases you need a real Activation code, still required in the year now, 2017 from Microsoft.  A retail COA code is needed. (unless using  OEM disk from HP)
Buzz words for OEM are ReInstallation disk or for new PC only. 
(Retail disks install on any machine with your RETAIL COA KEY license) 
Learn that the activation codes for OEM very by PC maker and for RETAIL.  MS knows exactly what code you attempt to activate and what it was sold as (OEM or Retail, Schools, or VLK, etc)
This is a real Retail disk, sold in the real MS retail box. (last seen in 2009)
end real.(2002 example photo)

BOGUS DISKs, endless and now forever....and getting worse fast , I think MS no longer goes after XP counterfeiters,  but does mandate  good COA # and good activation still.
My guess is MS is  like Leonard McCOY. He's dead jim....(1/2 Joking)?
XP now has endless illegal disks, and ISO files sold illegally  all over the world, in fact some countries, are like 40% XP in uses, still and all are illegal. (pirated)
I like the brutal silly and fake  honesty here,  I'm a CRACK .!  I bet it is chock full of VIRUS .! full of Cracker-Jack Virus...too. I bet.
My guess is MS just lets these folks stew in their own juices. (a toxic soup of viruses and more) IMO,  pure speculation here. (support ended in 2014 ;a hard cold fact)
Keep in mind MS forces Activation of XP still in 2017 , even when all other support is DEAD.  (yes)l and the phone help if fails, is $100 , yup ! I bet your crack COA is marked bogus by MS.

Vista Released in 2007, and HP in the year 2006 shipped only HP logo marked Install disks (as stated above (my crude history lessons)
There is  64bit one too... and must MATCH your PC's precessor.
The MS (means Microsoft) disk will need all HP drivers, No MS disk ever has all drivers on earth.  A fact.   If the HP site has no support for your over 20 years old PC then you may spend days finding a valid drivers. (infected too)

We use the correct disks, because all valid drivers are there. (DAY1 devices not your 2015 USB toys added, etc)
And is not infected. (Virus, worms, malware, adware, what ever badware!)
XP web sites are like endless infected sites TODAY 2017, and files, ISO's and disks infected everywhere sold on earth now... 
Now that XP is dead for over 3 years, all the bad guys love to do that, now that you are desperate?, they feed off you . (they  infect you)
The best answer is always ask HP for help, not fixya or other forums, ask  HP for help.

The cure most times , is upgrade to at least W7
By the Retail CD or stick and use it.


In all cases you need this,  a COA code. This is  OEM code. and is useless for Retail disks. (this tag is neutered)   Certificate of Authority, means you personal license for your MACHINE.
as seen on bottom of any HP laptop. or one side of a Desktop case.
Some times hidden in  big battery compartment hatch or its lid.
When you activate this code MS assigns you a product ID.As seen below... This ID shows up in the control panel , click the system ICON there.

In the same vein,  what about OEM versions of Windows.  (OEM to RETAIL)?
As you can see Retail is complex, but not when you buy the box off the shelf. (you get code 292 up)
Windows 7  the product key is xxx 3 digits.  (click control panel, and see System Icon , that and see Product ID )
XXX = OEM is , OEM license
My free upgrade upgrade from W7 to W10 , all of them OEM all commuted to Retail, after the free Microsoft upgrade to W10 .
 The proof is TYPED, , slmgr.vbs /dlv command tells you in line 2 of the displayed window "retail" (under cmd.exe prompt window)

If you had to change your mother board, (it blew up) get another, and call Microsoft, and tell them to activate it,  many folks have done this, Microsoft feels your pain if the MOBO blows up.  Why would they not?
But yes the digital activation fails,  and sure, computers never feel you pain.
 Call them don't be shy, you have a real OEM license; you are not a crook.  (in fact a victum of 1 of 3 billion transistors going POP goes the weasel !..)  Bad luck only.... Call em' let them FEEL your pain....

The rules for Hardware changes are only 1/2 a secret. 
4 to 8 major parts are not in any way a secret,but the weighting of them is a secret. 
One way to be safer here is change one part at a time.
Replace a part,  any part, and then boot and see if actvated is false.
if false, push activate if fails call MS
then replace another parts, do not replace all parts at once.
The rules changed in time. This is  from MS pages.

The following changes are examples of hardware changes that will not impact the activation status:

  • Video card
  • Adding extra memory


The only hardware changes that can negatively impact the activation status once you upgrade are changes to the:

  • CPU
  • TPM  (the security chip linked to BIOS)   (  if fitted at all 2012 up))
  • Motherboard replacement  (call them and tell MS the MOBO smoked, and is in the trash) BINGO A WIN.
Best read on this topic is here.

The PC has many hidden serial numbers inside that MS used to make up a hash code.
MAC addresses
BIOS versions, etc.
HDD serials. (using STAT bus commands )
DDR memory IDs
PCI scans of your PC you can see all this magic data hidden inside all PC. PnP scans to that.
Now the new TPM has codes stored. (my guess this is #1 prime target now for Microsoft)  BTW just popped in a i7 in place of my i5 process and MS never blinked a wink.... so....
And last UEFI BIOS now has the license stored too.
Best is not to worry, just now that the phone call , you tell them X smoked and is not wrecked.  (I put in a brand new and newer (sure) motherboard.

The only secret is the WEIGHTING of changes, allowed.  (so change parts 1 by  1) win.

The new world order... LOL ( new PC's have no DVD drive now on laptops) They are too thin now. This runs faster,  and not subject to CD scratches, etc.  (you can make your own stick)!

The wrong disks are,  using DELL or Toshiba (or other OEM  PC makers disks) are all useless.
Using a real , RETAIL  Microsoft disk then thinking your OEM HP license will activate, it will not,  that will cost you about $120, this is the cost for upgrading OEM TO RETAIL,  it is never free.
The best disk is always HP media, from HP.
One can buy any MS disk from Microsoft, and it may load ok, and some things will work, but will cost you $120 to find out. (after the 30 day test drive ends)
MS only sells W7 and 11 now,  sorry.  XP and VISTA are dead, so are all the older 12 OS dead.  DOS UP to VISTA.
Turn the PC Laptop over see that COA sticker?  that is you license, there is no other license but that OEM sticker,  and OEM OS loaded.
Rule 2, and bad , the W7 MS web page does not allow using OEM licenses, for W7.  period, it tells you to go to HP. (buy there kit)

version 1.  5-9-2017  (I am a retired virus killer (data preservation to the max), and "Merlin the Driver finder", guy, If it can be found, I can find it .) All my pages are 100% HP centric....