Solved! How to install Windows from recovered recovery partition only?


Mar 7, 2015
My question is quite simple: in short, is there a way to re-install my original Windows 7 on my Asus laptop if I only have my OEM license key (that I got with the PC) and the recovery partition?

Now the whole story: I bought the laptop a while ago, and I installed a Pro version of Windows 10 I got from work (because I used it to work), and along the way I also changed the original hard drive for an SSD. I cloned the recovery partition and the boot partition and saved them on an external drive. Now that I want to give the laptop away (it's still a good one), there's no way I get the original Windows from the recovery partition to install. I know I created the recovery DVD at some point, but I cannot put my hands on it and I'm not even sure it hasn't gone to the bin.
Since my license key is for an OEM, MS doesn't let me download a compatible windows installation ISO file and they direct me instead to the manufacturer.

I have wiped the SSD of the Win10 and cloned back my original boot and recovery partitions, and when I boot, it starts "installing Windows", then I get an ASUS screen, but then it reboots and I get stuck in a boot loop. Something must be working since it starts, but I suspect it's trying to get something from the actual windows installation which is no longer there in order to continue.

I've tried installing another copy of windows (which I cannot activate), but then it overwrites the boot partition and I can no longer find my recovery partition.

So my question is, with what I've got left (activation key + recovery partition), is there any way I can reinstall the original OS? Or is there any way I can modify the boot partition so that it would recognize the recovery partition, so I could boot from it and it would be able to fetch what it needs from the Windows installation?

Or even easier, anyone knows where I can download an OEM version of Windows 7 for Asus laptop? :)

Thanks a bunch to anyone who had the courage to read through the whole thing! :)