I have a Dell desktop that has a sticker on the top with my Windows XP license info and product key. I would like to clean my hard drive and re-install XP so that I can sell the desktop. The problem is that I do not have the original Windows XP installation CD.

Any ideas on how I can acquire a new Windows XP installation program? I assume there is nothing legally wrong with this, since I would just reuse my existing product key.

2 Answers 2


Dell will normally send you any disks that originally came with your system if you contact them (personal experience has shown that if the system is in warranty they will give you the first replacement for free and if it’s out of warranty you will need to pay shipping charges).

This is the option I normally take for my customer’s as Dell will send driver CDs as well as the OS disks.

Use this link to request a set of Dell XP discs.

  • @Moab Thanks for the link, was going to go look for the same but had a user bugging me for something here at the office. :-)
    – N_Lindz
    Mar 31, 2011 at 14:56
  • Thanks for this answer and for the link to request the XP discs from Dell. I went ahead and requested them, so hopefully that should do the trick!
    – bporter
    Mar 31, 2011 at 15:17
  • Just wanted to follow up in case it's helpful to others. My PC is out of warranty, so Dell charged me about $20 for the disc (including tax and shipping). Not a big deal. However, if your's is still under warranty, you may want to go ahead and request the OS installation CD if you don't already have it. Could save you time/money in the future! Thanks again for the help.
    – bporter
    Mar 31, 2011 at 16:01
  • @ N_Lindz, dang pesky users! @bporter, glad you got the discs on the way.
    – Moab
    Mar 31, 2011 at 17:25
  1. Download and burn a CD.
  2. Find a friend that has the disc.
  3. Ask the retailer
  4. Ask Microsoft??

BTW: Don't know whether download is legal or not in this case.

  • This will only work if you can find a friend with a Dell OEM install disk. A regular XP install disk will not work. Mar 31, 2011 at 14:43
  • Thx @Satanicpuppy, that did not pop to my mind, but you're right.
    – M'vy
    Mar 31, 2011 at 14:45
  • The legal bit is the license key, which you have attached to your computer. Torrents can be very handy for this, just search "XP CD Dell OEM", however you have to be careful, some of these are seeded with viruses very well hidden that are then installed in the root of the OS. Use only well downloaded and well rated discs. Mar 31, 2011 at 15:23

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