I was searching the internet for an article on how to activate Windows XP by telephone and discovered I had to write it. Why would you want to activate by phone? If you’ve just installed XP, you have to install Service Pack 3, Internet Explorer 8, Windows Media Player 11,.Windows Messenger 126.96.36.1995, .several versions of .Net Framework, several versions of MSXML, plus over 100 security updates.
Windows Media Player 11 and the excellent free anti-malware program Microsoft Security Essentials won’t install on a non-activated Windows XP computer. You also can’t use Windows Update if Windows XP isn’t activated, making installing your security updates a long and tedious process. But most importantly – connecting a fresh upatched installation of Windows XP to the internet to activate it is a good way for the computer to get a virus or other malware.
On new Windows installations I always install Service Pack 3, activate it by phone, then install and update Microsoft Security Essentials, and then visit Windows Update for all security updates. It is often necessary to come back to Windows Update several times until it hass no more updates to offer you. This slideshow illustrates how to activate Windows XP by phone.
First, start your computer. Look at the screenshots in the slideshow accompanying this article to see how to open the Activation Window. When you call the activation number (1 888-571-2048 or 1 716-871-2929 for Canada), a computer answers the phone. It says,
“Welcome to the Microsoft Product Activation Center. I can help you activate Windows XP, Windows Server, and other products. First, are you calling to activate Windows XP?”
“Are you at your computer with the Activation Window open?”
“OK now take a look at your screen. I’ll ask you to tell me the Installation ID. The Installation ID is a long number broken into several groups. I’ll ask you for one group at a time. Please say or enter the digits in group one.”
“Great! Group two.”
“OK. Now, group three.”
“And now group four.”
“And group five.”
“OK. Now, group six.”
“And group seven.”
“Now, group eight.”
“And finally, the last group.”
“All done. One moment while I look that up.”
“Verified. Now I will read you the Confirmation ID….”
The computer will give you some instructions in how to enter the Confirmation ID into the boxes on the screen. It will read you the first part of the ID – enter it into the first box (Box A). After you’ve entered the number into each box, say “Continue,” and the computer will read you the next part of the ID. Once you’ve typed in the entire ID, click the Next button.
If you see the last slide (#11) in the slide show and don’t get an error message, you’ve successfully activated Windows XP. Now you can install Microsoft Security Essentials or another antivirus and antimalware program, and update it.
Most antivirus programs can be updated by connecting them to the internet and manually updating them. You should explore the antivirus program and find out how to update it BEFORE connecting to the internet so that your computer spends the least amount of time unprotected. If you can, it’s better to do this and update your software (including Windows) from behind a firewall like a router.
If you will be installing Microsoft Office, it’s better to install it before going to Windows Update as Office is also updated that way.