Problems with Windows

I’m looking for advice please, I have a Samsung notebook upgraded from Windows8.1 to Windows10 along with many problems. Decided to ditch10 and revert back to original installed 8.1. After loading files etc back and now at the point of activating Windows I find the Reg key is blocked! I’m at the point of trying out Linux but will I still be able to run Windows programs such as Word Excel etc. Are there any compatibility issues likely to occur in running and using Linux that I need to be aware of. I can’t see anyway of retrieving this blocked key and in view of all the unreliability issues it would be a refreshing break from all the problems associated with the Windows system. Kind regards

You won’t be able to run Windows applications in Linux, sometimes they can be made to work (via WINE) but it’s usually either very hard for a beginner, or impossible.

That said there are usually Linux alternatives such as (for Office) LibreOffice, WP Office, etc. … these can read/write Microsoft Office documents, but there will be the occasional formatting differences (inserted pictures may move slightly, etc.).

The Win8.1 reg key shouldn’t be blocked though … how did you get your Windows key ?

Hi and thanks for your reply. This note book is two years old and like later production models has no external disc drive. The Windows 8.1 OS
comes pre loaded, the reg key although not documented can be shown using software as is the case here. I took advantage of the free upgrade to version 10 thinking that the change would be for the better… no way! So decided to roll back to 8.1 the OS has loaded to the point where the reg key has to be entered. An error code results after entering the key, not an uncommon error it would seem. So I’m looking for a reliable and stable alternative, providing I can use firefox without problems I’m not so bothered about windows office facilities. Other programs I use are not necessarily window based besides I also have an XP machine and Windows7 alternatives.

Hi Penndrow - and welcome to the forums!

I gave up on Windows at Vista and changed fully to Linux. I’ve never regretted it - not once! For my computing needs - pretty standard I’d say - surfing the 'net, bit of office stuff, no gaming etc etc, then Linux is ideal.

My advice? Research!! There are many, many variations of Linux out there which can be overwhelming to the newcomer! If you’re similar in needs to me, then go for a Long-Term Support (LTS) version. Remember that Linux is not Windows and there will be some learning/different methods to get used to - but there is nothing daunting to worry about. Issues will be dealt with (usually very quickly) on various forums (especially this one - excellent ;)) by enthusiasts who have probably gone through the exact same as you when they changed over, so don’t be afraid to ask.

Most Linux OS’s will do pretty much what you want with some more slanted one way or the other depending on the developer’s view of what makes ‘the perfect system’. Linux is infinitely customisable. It will allow you to have exactly the system you want. There are no licensing issues - you don’t require a ‘key’. You can change what you have any time you like. You can put your set-up on to any computer that will take it. You can pass on anything you have to others. Viruses are a thing of the past (I know! I didn’t believe it either!) as are BSOD’s! Most annoying problems seem to be with drivers - though this has really improved recently. This is not the fault of Linux - more that certain manufacturers only ‘see’ Windows and don’t provide a Linux version. There will be a solution! And as long as you are prepared to listen, follow instructions (and have the ability to cut-and-paste!) then all will be well.

When posting a request for help, give as much info as possible about your computer hardware and operating system as you can - and the issues you are experiencing. You’ll be amazed at the depth of knowledge available to you - all this at no cost - though donations are always welcome…!

Hope these few thoughts help and good luck in your endeavours!


Hi Rich thanks for taking the time to reply. This note book is used mainly for emailing, facebook friend contacts and wheather station data etc.
Partway through my last posting the key board frozen so had to continue with the touch pen. The note book was purchased for my wife to use and having a detachable screen was an added bonus for her, however buggs and problems ment I spent more time trying to get it to run without issues. So at this moment in time I want to sit at night and just do some basic stuff on an OS that’s reliable and yes I can try various software packages to experiment with. I’m looking at ubuntu as a start mainly because it’s free I’ve invested to much over the years on stuff that fails to perform.
Machine details: Samsung model 500T P13AAI operating system Windows8.1 (build 9600)
Kind Regards

Ubuntu would be an ideal starting point, normally I can’t stand its Unity interface, but for a touchscreen tablet / notebook combo its probably the ideal UI

I am running Peppermint 6 (Ubuntu based)on a Samsung laptop. ( which also had windross 8.1 as the factory installed “OS” ) With that deleted, It is absolutely superb - We bought this after an old HP laptop, er, “died” - But not before we had done lots of research on the web - We found a few folk running both mint and Ubuntu on the identical machine, and took the plunge…

Have a search about - you might find someone running linux on the same machine…


Create an Ubuntu 14.04 64bit LiveUSB…

Then with that LiveUSB inserted into a USB port, turn on the PC and immediately hit F10 … it should offer you a boot device selection screen

then just select the Ubuntu LiveUSB.

Thanks Mark I’ll give it a try first, failing that I noticed a windows options sreen from which you can either select to recycle and wipe drive, reset to default or reload windows. I’ve really got nothing to loose just itching to try out lenux as an alternative.

Any problems creating the Ubuntu 14.04 64bit LiveUSB, or booting from it … give s a shout.

Thanks Mark will do

Tried the boot installer usb for unbutu. F10 brings up the boot options selecting to boot from usb brings up a wait message and then reverts to the welcome screen and windows desk top. In a desperate attempt to get rid of windows I went through delete sequence but part way through a pop up appeared stating special permission from installer must be granted to remove, hence the operation was aborted.
I’ve got a gut feeling that removing the windows OS in preference to an alternative may not be possible. I’ve read somewhere that the bios on some later machine does not allow alterations to prevent corruption of the system!
So at this point I’m stuck_if I can completely clean the drive will the Samsung software allow me to load up Linux!

The thing is I can’t say for sure with that hardware…

How did you create the Ubuntu LiveUSB ?

Hi Mark USB installer:
And a copy of the ubuntu installer image(.iso) :

Try a different USB creator such as

Win32 Disk Imager


Unetbootin (for Windows)


LinuxLive USB Creator

Some systems are picky about the USB bootloader.

Thanks Mark
I’ll give them a try

This article may be of interest even though it is for an HP laptop.

Re: Completely Delet Current Windows 8.1 and install Linux Mint Debian edition

‎03-30-2014 05:00 PM

This is NOT official HP Customer Support and I, as most other persons on this forum, do not work for HP. This is a peer-to-peer user supported forum for HP consumer class products. HP maintains no official presence on this forum and it is unlikely that HP will respond in an official capacity. Any reply from a HP employee represents their own opinion and not that of HP’s.

With recent changes in computer technology and the introduction of Windows 8, the process of installing an OS has changed a little.

  1. If by “Backed Up”, you mean you created your personal HP Recovery Media… then YES.

  2. YES, returning the computer to a factory like state is an easy and simple task when using HP Recovery Media.

Since your computer shipped with Windows 8 / 8.1, you will need to DISABLE “Secure Boot” and ENABLE “Legacy Support” before you can install LMDE. Using the Windows Disk Management Console, you may wish to shrink the “C” partition to create “unused” space in which to install LMDE… if you wish to dual boot. The LMDE installation media needs to support UEFI to install on the factory hard drive that is GPT partitioned. There may be other obstacles to overcome as well.

Well so far I’m trying out one of Marks Greaves suggestions he posted. Lili USB creator looks the business… loaded it up on a USB pressed F10 to select boot order but Windows start screen still comes up. However I can select the folder and get the live run and debug screens to appear but pressing start results in an error notice, as is the same for debug ( a green arrow starts to run but fails with an error message as follows:

Failed to open amessage for the virtual machine Linuxlive.
rewsult code E_FAIL 0x80004005
component: ConsoleWrap
Interface: IConsole {872da645-4a9b-1727-bee2-5585105b9eed}

Means nothing to me though.

You don’t want to install it from inside Windows.

Can you get into the BIOS ?