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You shouldn't need to purchase the game again for your activation code. Email the support area of whomever you bought the game from and have them look up your account. They should see you're a legitimate user and resend another email with your activation code.
Before doing that, I'd first completely uninstall the game and then delete any remaining ArmA folders.
Also delete your user folders:
C:\Documents and Settings\<your user name>\My Documents\ArmA
I just started upgraded and I keep on getting errors. PBO errors to be exact, I dont have the email to redownload the game either.
Dont know if it will effect it, going to give it a shot. Might have to buy the game again. :(
I had a similar problem when I did a fresh windows install and tried to re-install and re-patch ArmA. Do the error messages generally look like this (file name and number sequence vary):
Error found in in files Addons\air.pbo (ec5156e2!=179c437e)
If this is the type of error you are getting I can practically guarantee you that the errors are caused by bad ram or Hard disk problems. For me I had a few bad memory addresses in my RAM and it was corrupting the data as it was being installed/patched. If you can run memtest+ to check your RAM and see if that is the case. It could also be hard disk problems as well so check your disk for errors too.
If this is the error the only way I could get it to patch was to remove the bad stick of RAM, replace it (or run without it), and then install/patch. Let me know if you need any help. Good luck!