Windows 10: Use Activation Troubleshooter in Windows 10  

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    Use Activation Troubleshooter in Windows 10

    Use Activation Troubleshooter in Windows 10

    How to Use Activation Troubleshooter in Windows 10
    Published by Category: Installation & Upgrade
    31 Mar 2017
    Designer Media Ltd

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    Posts: 20,878

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    How to Use Activation Troubleshooter in Windows 10

    information   Information
    Starting with Windows 10 Anniversary Update and Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 14371, Microsoft is introducing the Activation troubleshooter that will help you address most commonly encountered activation issues on Genuine Windows devices including those caused by hardware changes. For example Ė if your device has a digital license (formerly called ďdigital entitlementĒ) for Windows 10 Pro from a previously installed activated Windows 10 build but you accidentally re-installed Windows 10 Home on such a device, the troubleshooter will automatically guide you through upgrading to Windows 10 Pro and activate Windows.

    If you made a significant hardware change to your device (such as replacing the motherboard) Windows 10 might no longer be activated. If you're running Windows 10 (Version 1607) and added your Microsoft account and linked it to the digital license on your device, you can use the Activation troubleshooter to reactivate Windows.

    This tutorial will show you how to use the Activation troubleshooter to help with the most common activation issues including those caused by hardware changes in Windows 10.

    You must be signed in as an administrator to be able to use the Activation troubleshooter.

    Note   Note
    Starting with Windows 10 Anniversary Update and Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 14371, you can link your Microsoft account (MSA) to the Windows 10 digital license (formerly called digital entitlement) on your device. This can help you reactivate Windows using the Activation troubleshooter if you make a hardware change later, such as replacing the motherboard.

    There is not a concept of a primary administrator MSA on a PC. So any administrator MSA that is verified on a PC will show as having the HardwareID associated with their MSA and the OS digital license associated with that HardwareID. Don't think of the license as attached to the MSA, but instead think of the MSA as having the authority to transfer the license. If you have two MSAs verified on a PC and you use one to go through the reactivation process to transfer the digital license, then if you try it with the other MSA you will get told it's no longer possible.

    If you already used an MSA to sign in to your activated Windows 10 Home or Pro PC, your MSA will be automatically linked. You can use this MSA linked digital license to re-activate your Genuine Windows 10 device by running the Activation troubleshooter, if you run into Activation issues caused by hardware changes.

    If you don't sign in to your activated Windows 10 Home or Pro device with your linked Microsoft account, then you will need to add your Microsoft account to link the MSA to the digital license on your PC. You must be signed in as an administrator to add your Microsoft account.

    After you add your Microsoft account and link it to your digital license, you can use the Activation troubleshooter to help reactivate Windows after a hardware change.

    If you didnít add your Microsoft account and link it to the digital license on your device, you wonít be able to reactivate Windows after a hardware change using the Activation troubleshooter.

    If youíre signed in using the correct Microsoft account, here are some additional reasons why you canít reactivate Windows:
    • The edition of Windows on your device doesnít match the edition of Windows you linked to your digital license.
    • The type of device youíre activating doesnít match the type of device you linked to your digital license.
    • Windows was never activated on your device.
    • You reached the limit on the number of times you can reactivate Windows on your device.
    • OEM license is non transferable. Only a retail license is transferable.
    • Your device has more than one administrator, and a different administrator already reactivated Windows on your device.
    • Your device is managed by your organization and the option to reactivate Windows isnít available. For help with reactivation, contact your organizationís support person.


    EXAMPLE: Windows 10 Activation
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    Here's How:

    1. Open Settings, and click/tap on the Update & security icon.

    2. Click/tap on Activation on the left side, and click/tap on Troubleshoot on the right side. (see screenshot below)
    Note   Note
    You will not see Troubleshoot of your Windows is activated.


    Click image for larger version. 

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    3. Click/tap on Yes in UAC prompt. (see screenshot below)

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    4. The Activation troubleshooter will now attempt to detect activation problems. (see screenshot below)

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    5. If the troubleshooter shows a message that Windows canít be activated on your device. Click/tap on the I changed hardware on this device recently link. (see screenshot below)

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    A) If you are currently signed in to a local account and didn't add your Microsoft account to your device, then you will now need to enter your Microsoft account (ex: email address) and password, and then click/tap on Sign in. (see screenshot below)

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    B) Select the device (computer name) you are currently using and want to re-activate, check the This is the device Iím using right now box, and click/tap on Activate. (see screenshot below)
    Note   Note
    If you donít see the device you are using in the list of results, make sure that you are signed in using the same Microsoft account you linked to the Windows 10 digital license on your device.


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    6. Your Windows is now activated or not. (see screenshots below)
    Note   Note
    If youíre signed in using the correct Microsoft account, here are some reasons why you canít reactivate Windows:
    • No Internet connection.
    • The edition of Windows on your device doesnít match the edition of Windows you linked to your digital license.
    • The type of device youíre activating doesnít match the type of device you linked to your digital license.
    • Windows was never activated on your device or the device is not running Genuine Windows.
    • You reached the limit on the number of times you can reactivate Windows on your device.
    • Your device has more than one administrator, and a different administrator already reactivated Windows.
    • The edition of Windows on your device is not Windows 10 Home or Windows 10 Pro.
    • Your device is managed by your organization and the option to reactivate Windows isnít available. For help with reactivation, contact your organizationís support person.

    If you need additional help reactivating Windows on your device, contact Microsoft customer support or try to activate by phone.


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    That's it,
    Shawn


  1.    18 Jul 2016 #1

    Hi Brink.

    I am testing this with 2x win10 (14372) pro on hyper-v VMs. Browsing my microsoft account's devices online, I see both devices of which one is activated and the other isn't. When I try to activate the second one using the same microsoft account, I can use the troubleshooter but the device I am trying to switch to is not listed, so I cannot finish the license moving. Did you come across this already?
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  2. Posts : 20,878
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro build 16199
    Thread Starter
       18 Jul 2016 #2

    Hello Colin,

    Was the device linked to that Microsoft account prior? If not, then that would be why the device is not showing up in the list in the activation troubleshooter.

    https://www.tenforums.com/tutorials/5...ows-10-pc.html
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  3.    18 Jul 2016 #3

    Hi.

    It was linked. And it is still linked, as I wrote, it shows up online in my account's devices - just not in trouble shooter.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  4. Posts : 20,878
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro build 16199
    Thread Starter
       18 Jul 2016 #4

    I just wanted to clarify since those are two separate lists. The device would only show up in the activation troubleshooter if it was linked to the MSA while previously activated.

    Are you trying to activate with a separate or same license/product key than the first device?

    What happens when you manually enter the product key to activate?
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  5.    18 Jul 2016 #5

    I installed 2 VMs with 14372, A and B. Activated A, used your manual to activate and tie the activation to my MS account. Logged into my MS account and it shows Machine A under my devices. Logged into B with the same microsoft account and checked online that now 2 devices show up under that MS account. Tried the activation troubleshooter to activate B but it tells me that there are NO devices tied to my microsoft account that may be used to activate the currently used machine. Then, when I click on "Show other devices linked to this microsoft account", to my surprise, the error is "windows cannot be activated another time on these devices" while listing NO devices at all.

    If I insert the product key once more I get "windows cannot be activated on this device because the product key that you entered is already in use on another device".
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  6. Posts : 20,878
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro build 16199
    Thread Starter
       18 Jul 2016 #6

    Ah, ok. That would be why then. B was not actually linked to your Microsoft account since it was never activated.

    Since you're trying to use the same license from A to activate B with, this would be why you are getting the activation error message. You can only have one device activated with a product key, and removed from any other device first.

    If you uninstalled A, then you may have to activate by phone for B using OPTION FOUR below.

    Activate Windows 10
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  7.    18 Jul 2016 #7

    I see.
    I thought this was at least a way to reactivate on the same device after hardware changes like new hdd/ssd or mainboard? I thought I could simulate that by cloning the activated one to completely new hardware (which I did in the meantime, I cloned that activated vm installation to a new physical hard drive (v2p conversion)) but that did not work either (same symptoms).
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  8. Posts : 20,878
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro build 16199
    Thread Starter
       18 Jul 2016 #8

    Correct, but a VM would be considered a different device instead.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  9.    18 Jul 2016 #9

    What is the difference of cloning to a different hardware (and abandoning the original installation afterwards of course) and exchanging the mainboard? Of course the cloned hardware is completely different, but still, the mainboard exchange is a substantial change, too.
    The MoBo change would work (would allow reactivation) with this method, the cloning to different hardware would not?
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 
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