1. Technology
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Will a Product Key Generator Find My CD Key?

By

Woman using a computer
JGI/Jamie Grill/Blend Images/Getty Images

Question: "Will a Product Key Generator Find My CD Key?"

A CD key generator that creates unique product keys for software programs could be very useful! Most software programs require CD keys before you can use the program so having a program that creates them could save lots of money, especially if you've already paid for the program but lost the CD key.

Programs that generate CD keys go by many names including product key generators, CD key creators, CD key extractors, CD key makers, keygens, and license key generators. No matter the name, all key generators create free, unique product keys for various software programs, video games, and operating systems.

Answer: A CD key generator may create a product key that your software will accept but it will not find your legal product key.

Product keys created by product key generators are NOT legal product keys. The only legal way to obtain a product key is by purchasing the software yourself or by contacting the software maker directly to obtain a key.

Several CD key generators exist that create unique product keys for all kinds of software from companies like Microsoft and Adobe. For example, specific key generators exist for specific programs and operating systems like Adobe Creative Suite CS5, Microsoft Office 2010, Microsoft Windows 7, Windows Vista and Windows XP. The most popular CD key generators are those that create unique CD keys for popular video games.

No matter which key generator you might use or where you download it from, using a product key other than the unique one that comes with an individual, legally purchased copy of a software title is illegal. Using a product key not issued by the software developer is certainly a violation of the agreement you make when you use the software.

Requiring a valid, unique product key is a software company's way of ensuring that each copy of their program is used only once and that each customer is paying for each copy used.

If you have a legal copy of a program but you've just lost your CD key, try a free product key finder program to locate the product key from your currently installed copy of the program. This is a perfectly legal way of obtaining a product key because it's the same one you purchased when you first installed the program.

Obviously I can't provide you with links to key generator programs since the product keys they create aren't legal. My suggestion is to save some money and purchase the software legally. If you can't do that, choose a free program that's similar to the expensive one. Looking for a free operating system? Try Linux. Looking for free productivity software like Microsoft Office? Try OpenOffice.

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.