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Unable To Install Windows 10 Pro edition

After creating a new installation media to install Windows 10 on your PC, you are unable To Install Windows 10 Pro edition. The installation skips the editions option and installs straight away the Windows Home edition. Here is how to fix it.

Problem: Unable To Install Windows 10 Pro edition

Using the Windows Media Creation Tool, one can create an installation media (USB flash drive or DVD). Then, use it to install a new copy of Windows 10, perform a clean installation, or reinstall Windows 10. However, depending on your hardware, you could not get the option to select Windows Pro or any other version.

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There is one installer for all Windows editions. Windows automatically chooses one of the Windows 10 editions according to your serial key in BIOS or the already (or previous) installed Windows OS. Because the OEM product key is embedded into the UEFI firmware, the Windows installer will detect the product key in the UEFI and automatically select the corresponding edition of Windows 10 to install.

In my case, I was trying to install Windows 10 Pro on an old laptop, previously with Windows 8 Home edition (if I recall well), which I plan to use for a new home lab. For instance, this problem won't happen if you plan to install Windows on a new/clean Virtual Machine using VMware Workstation.

So, your problem will be this:

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From the step below, you click "Install Now."

Windows-10-Installation

After accepting the license terms, you jump directly to this step, where you can Upgrade or Install a new copy of Windows.

Custom-Install-Windows-Only

After you proceed here, you'll have to choose the drive to install windows. Then Windows 10 Home edition will be installed automatically. No option for other versions will be displayed here.

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Solution

You can hack the installation media and force the installation so you can choose what Windows edition to use. For this, you need to create an additional file for your installation Disc/USB drive (Almost sure it is a USB drive).

Option 1: Create an ei.cfg file to display all Windows editions during the installation

Step 1: Open any text editor, like Notepad, and type (or copy/paste) the following lines:

[Channel]
Retail

Step 2: Using “Save As...”, name the file ei.cfg. This action will replace the .txt extension for .cfg.

Step 3: Copy the newly created file inside the folder Sources, located on the Windows installation USB drive.

Step 4: Install Windows 10 Pro.

Now, after the "Install Now" step, you will get to this option. Either enter your license or click on "I don't have a product key."

Force-the-Windows-10-Pro-edition-installation

You should now see all Windows editions during the installation, as in the image below.

Unable To Install Windows 10 Pro edition

Note: The "N" editions of Windows 10 that you see in the image include the same functionality as other editions of Windows 10 except for media-related technologies. The N editions don't have Windows Media Player, Skype, or certain preinstalled media apps (Music, Video, Voice Recorder). If you don't see the N editions, there's no need to worry.

If this option doesn't work, try option 2.

Option 2: Create a pid.txt file to force the Windows 10 Pro edition installation

Step 1: Open any text editor, like Notepad, and type (or copy/paste) the following lines:

[PID]
Value=VK7JG-NPHTM-C97JM-9MPGT-3V66T

Note: The value above is the default Windows 10 Pro Key.

Step 2: Save the file as a .txt extension (default)

Step 3: Copy the newly created file inside the folder Sources, located on the Windows installation USB drive.

Step 4: Install Windows 10 Pro.

To force the installation of another Windows version, take a look at the other Windows 10 Default Keys.

Operating System Edition Default Product Key:

  • Windows 10 Home YTMG3-N6DKC-DKB77-7M9GH-8HVX7
  • Windows 10 Pro VK7JG-NPHTM-C97JM-9MPGT-3V66T
  • Windows 10 Home N 4CPRK-NM3K3-X6XXQ-RXX86-WXCHW
  • Windows 10 Home - Single Language BT79Q-G7N6G-PGBYW-4YWX6-6F4BT
  • Windows 10 Home - Country Specific 7B6NC-V3438-TRQG7-8TCCX-H6DDY
  • Windows 10 Pro N 2B87N-8KFHP-DKV6R-Y2C8J-PKCKT
  • Windows 10 Education YNMGQ-8RYV3-4PGQ3-C8XTP-7CFBY

If you still have issues, try keeping both files from option one and option two into the Source folder. Run the Windows installation one more time.

Reference:

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10

Juan Mulford
Juan Mulford
I have been active in IT for over fourteen years now. I am a solutions architect, working with storage, virtualization, and VDI solutions. For the past ten years, I have been living and working in Taiwan.

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