1. Created a Bart PE iso, nothing extra added, just used defaults.
2. Booted dead system from PE CD.
3. Downloaded LoadHive from MATCODE - Tools for Professionals
and put it on a floppy.
4. Ran it from the floppy in PE, loaded C:\WINDOWS\System32\Config\software ... it mounted the hive as SOFTWARE_00.
5. Ran regedit, found the SOFTWARE_00 subkey and navigated to CurrentVerion, exported that subkey to the floppy.
6. I moved to a working XP machine, backed up my DigitalProductId key. I edited the reg file from the floppy to only contain the DigitalProductId key.
7. I merged the DigitalProductId key from the floppy, ran Keyfinder (Magic Jellybean Software) and it pulled the key !
8. I merged the backup I made and ran it again, and sure enough it had my original key.
very very cool...I did not think this was possible. Thanks for all the help!