W7Home to W10Pro with DL, new PC wont activate after clean install


  1. Posts : 58
    Windows 10 Pro
       #1

    W7Home to W10Pro with DL, new PC wont activate after clean install


    Hey all,

    I built this PC for my good friend about 6 years ago, and along the way upgraded the OS to W10 just before the free upgrade expired I think...

    He asks me to build another and I do, but when I ask him if he remember what OS he has he didnt seem to remember, nor did I, so I asked him to take a look at start button and from there I asked if the button was round or square....his was a version before it went square so I thought it was W7 lol, so I downloaded Win7 Home as that was the DVD disk I also had, then installed it on new PC, but I had issues with updates and told him I will install Win10Home, so I did. He didnt create a MS account so nothing was sync'd up. I took new PC and set it up, then took his old PC home to back up and see that its WIN10Pro with Digital License, crap!

    So I searched here and elsewhere about how to go from 32 bit to 64 bit, clean install only, and Home to Pro, but to also accept the digital license.

    I went to his house last night having read other posts and figured I would have him create a MS account to sign in on the old PC and sync up, then I did a clean install with W10Pro x64, using the media creation tool in the 32bit WinPro old PC, set it up on usb drive, went to new PC installed Win10Pro x64, signing in with newly created MS account from old PC, and went thru troubleshooter in activation and it came up with cannot activate windows 10, to try again later or something like that.....

    so question now do I need to call MS support or should I wait a few days first and try again.

    Sorry for detailed but that's how I write...

    Gerry
      My Computer


  2. Posts : 17,369
    Windows 11 Pro
       #2

    In a Command Prompt (Admin) or Powershell (Admin) run:

    slmgr /ato

    Did that activate it?
      My Computer


  3. Posts : 25,076
    10 Home x64 (21H2) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       #3

    To go from 32-bit to 64-bit you have to do a clean install, there's no upgrade path that can change the 'bits'.

    If you install the correct edition (Home or Pro) that matches the digital licence held on the activation servers then it should activate automatically. If you install Pro on a machine that has a digital licence for Home (or the other way round) it won't activate.

    The simple solution if you have installed the wrong one is to go to Settings > Update & security > Activation then change the product key to the generic key for the edition you want. There's a list of the generic keys here. When the version matches the digital licence it should activate.

    The Microsoft account is a bit of a red herring. While you can link a licence to a MS account, this is for transferring a full retail licence form one machine to another (or to the same machine after major hardware changes) - not for activating multiple machines from a single licence. Anyway, as this PC got its licence through the free upgrade, this licence it tied to the machine's hardware and the EULA says it is not transferable.
      My Computers


  4. Posts : 58
    Windows 10 Pro
    Thread Starter
       #4

    NavyLCDR said:
    In a Command Prompt (Admin) or Powershell (Admin) run:

    slmgr /ato

    Did that activate it?
    I will check out, thanks
      My Computer


  5. Posts : 58
    Windows 10 Pro
    Thread Starter
       #5

    Bree said:
    To go from 32-bit to 64-bit you have to do a clean install, there's no upgrade path that can change the 'bits'.
    Yeah I read that also, i didnt think it was possible but searched anyways lol

    If you install the correct edition (Home or Pro) that matches the digital licence held on the activation servers then it should activate automatically. If you install Pro on a machine that has a digital licence for Home (or the other way round) it won't activate.
    At first I installed Home edition in the new PC, until I learned it was Pro, then made clean install to Pro edition

    The simple solution if you have installed the wrong one is to go to Settings > Update & security > Activation then change the product key to the generic key for the edition you want. There's a list of the generic keys here. When the version matches the digital licence it should activate.
    Hmm ok will try


    The Microsoft account is a bit of a red herring. While you can link a licence to a MS account, this is for transferring a full retail licence form one machine to another (or to the same machine after major hardware changes) - not for activating multiple machines from a single licence. Anyway, as this PC got its licence through the free upgrade, this licence it tied to the machine's hardware and the EULA says it is not transferable.
    hmmm, hopefully not, I had him purchase the Home edition 64 bit, so if cant activate with Pro then have him downgrade and use Home edition keys.

    Thanks
      My Computer


  6. Posts : 25,076
    10 Home x64 (21H2) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       #6

    bullfights said:
    I had him purchase the Home edition 64 bit, so if cant activate with Pro then have him downgrade and use Home edition keys.
    Assuming this is the full retail version and not an OEM one, then AFAIK that can be legitimately transferred from one machine to another by linking it to an MS account.
    Link Microsoft Account to Windows 10 Digital License
      My Computers


  7. Posts : 58
    Windows 10 Pro
    Thread Starter
       #7

    Bree said:
    Assuming this is the full retail version and not an OEM one, then AFAIK that can be legitimately transferred from one machine to another by linking it to an MS account.
    Link Microsoft Account to Windows 10 Digital License
    Yes it's a retail...purchased from Newegg...Cool I'll check that out next week...it delivers tomorrow so will tell him to stand by til I get back.
    Thanks
      My Computer


  8. Posts : 16,278
    W10Prox64
       #8

    bullfights said:
    Yes it's a retail...purchased from Newegg...Cool I'll check that out next week...it delivers tomorrow so will tell him to stand by til I get back.
    Thanks
    Just FYI: Usually Newegg sell OEM System Builder Keys and they are not full retail (not transferable), so make sure you have a full retail key.
      My Computer


 

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