Reinstalling Windows and your applications is a hassle for many reasons, but the greatest is probably the time it takes to find your various licence keys. Are they on a CD box, a sleeve, in an email, online, somewhere else? You’ll have hours of fun finding out.
Windows Licence Key Dump can help by finding the product key for Windows, along with many other applications (Acrobat, Creative Suite, Photoshop, Norton Internet Security, TuneUp Utilities, VMWare Workstation and so on), and displaying them all in a single report.
There’s plenty of product-retrieving competition, of course, but Windows Licence Key Dump is different: it’s a command line tool, easily scriptable, and so very convenient if, say, you’d like to automatically create product key reports for many different PCs. Or you just want something you can add to your portable PC toolkit.
The program isn’t so convenient at first, unfortunately, as it insists on being installed. There is no good technical reason for this, as far as we can see, it’s just so that the setup program can ask you to install a couple of toolbars. Pay attention, though, click “Decline” a few times and you’ll be safe.
Once the program is installed you can double-click WindowsLicenseDump.exe to get a first look at its report, a simple list including each product’s name, version and licence key. This worked reasonably well for us, though with a few small issues. We’re not sure why the report includes Internet Explorer, for instance, as the product key provided is the same as for Windows. And the report itself uses more columns than the command window displays by default, which means licence keys are displayed part on one line, part on the next.
Of course Windows Licence Key Dump is supposed to be used at the command line, where formatting isn’t such an issue. Just use a command like WindowsLicenseKeyDump | clip to send its output to the clipboard, or try WindowsLicenseKeyDump > LicenseKeyDump.txt to save its report to a text file, for easy reference later.