Computers & IT Services – Kingston, Ontario

From 2013 to 2021, I provided on-site and remote computer services to private sector businesses and organizations in the Greater Toronto Area, mostly in the west end of Toronto and Mississauga. Due to a desire to live and work based in a smaller city in Ontario, we’ve settled on Kingston, Ontario.

The objective for RapidEye Consulting remains the same as before: Gaining traction in Eastern Ontario, while continuing to work in Toronto in the province of Ontario along the 401.

We do not have a dedicated office but have everything else in place to get you competitive pricing and quick shipping on all orders, large and small. If you are a business or organization reading this, you want to upgrade or you simply need a fresh perspective on IT, we want your business.

You can call me anytime at (613) 544-8883 or email (paul [at] rapideyeconsulting [dot] ca) to discuss your IT needs or to discuss computer products.

Thank you,

Paul Latour | RapidEye Consulting

Activating Windows 7 OEM CoA as KVM Guest on CentOS 8 Works

If you are considering a low-cost, yet, reliable solution to host and maintain your applications, and you have system admin-type knowledge, you can successfully setup a KVM bare-metal CentOS 8 installation that has a fully activated Windows 7 Professional guest operating system to host the system on, but then still have a hypervisor to optimally run Linux as well.

What many people might not realize is that the Windows CoA/sticker license key on their legacy OEM hardware actually activates as a VM guest in KVM bare-metal situations. This means potential benefits for many people who would like to host and control their own software on a current hypervisor and still run their Microsoft Windows OS.

A person and/or company could then leverage their old Windows installation key, but then also activate additional Linux-guests on the same old hardware, effectively getting the maximum business juice out of the hardware. You can do a lot with 8GB DDR2 or 16GB DDR3 using KVM and some old Intel hardware with support for hardware virtualization and a Windows Pro sticker on it. Getting business going on low-cost hardware and software can be done without issue with the correct security measures in place to offset the old OS limitations.

People who are willing to wastefully spend can take their more costly approaches that give into the internet security fears of upgrading the latest OS for security reasons, but not actually create tangible benefits for themselves after spending all of their hard earned money unnecessarily on hardware, when they could have of spent that money on personnel.

In my situation, I was not able to activate Windows 7 Professional guests in Citrix XenServer 6.5 and 7 using legitimate stickers/CoA license keys affixed to the hardware I was running on. After moving to KVM on CentOS 8 to be my hypervisor of choice, not just as a server and guest OS, I have improved hypervisor reliability and Windows guest compatibility. Now, I can focus on increasing business and getting more customers and less time worrying how I am going to have spend on licensing and hardware spending.

This article is not for everybody, but it might be beneficial to a reader who might possess IT skills who might also be thinking about their business and how they could go about reducing cost by getting the most out of their system with a KVM setup.

I upgraded to Microsoft Windows 10 Pro – Free of Charge

Microsoft has improved with activation on a technical level, but I wonder how it all works.

It’s great to be able to get licensed Window 7 OEM CoAs activated on Windows 10 simply by booting with UEFI configuration, installing, entering the key on the sticker or running the Windows 10 upgrade from Windows 7. I’m not even sure whether one needs UEFI or not.

A screencap of my Windows 10 Activation on Dell Latitude E6410 on 2009 hardware.

I’ve upgraded older ASUS, Lenovo, and Dell hardware using the 25-character license key (CoA) attached to its exterior, as long as I was using the corresponding edition of Windows matching that of the sticker’s. If you have a Windows 7 Home CoA, install Windows 10 Home; If you have a Windows 7 Pro CoA, install Windows 10 Pro.

The only hardware I have not been able to activate, at all, were custom built PCs without any original OEM-supplied license key.

Overall, I like how simplified the activation process has become, but I also like not having to buy new hardware.