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Microsoft Activation

Posted on 2003-02-26
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I have a laptop with MS XP-Home installed and registered.  I lent the laptop to someone who installed a copy of MS-Visio 2002 who also installed Microsoft Activation.  How can I fairly simply de-activate or remove the activation without formatting and starting again.
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Question by:DougNethercott
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7 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:donnyr10
ID: 8024862
This is what I found out a while ago :

When you activate Windows XP, Microsoft stores the data in the Windows Product Activation database files wpa.dbl and Wpa.bak in the folder %systemroot%\system32.

If you change the motherboard or make significant hardware changes, XP will require you to reactive. But if you plan to reinstall XP on the same hardware, you can back up the activation status and then restore it after you reinstall and avoid the activation process.

You can backup the Windows Product Activation database files to diskette. They are very small. A directory listing from my XP Pro workstation:


C:\WINDOWS\system32>dir wp*
 Volume in drive C has no label.
 Volume Serial Number is 8447-0571

 Directory of C:\WINDOWS\system32

10/24/2001  08:28 PM            12,584 wpa.bak
01/14/2002  09:05 AM            12,642 wpa.dbl

After you reinstall XP, to restore the Windows Product Activation database files:
Start XP to Minimal Safe mode

Change directory to the \%systemroot%\system32 folder
Rename the newly created wpa.dbl to wpa.nonactivated and wpa.bak, if it exists, to wpabak.nonactivated.

Copy your backed up wpa.dbl and wpb.bak files to the system32 folder
Reboot
This should work if you want to avoid activating XP after a reinstall or restore on the same or very similar hardware. It will not work if the hardware is significantly different from that in place when the Windows Product Activation database files were created.

This is not a hack to avoid activating installations.

More :
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/treeview/default.asp?url=/technet/prodtechnol/winxppro/evaluate/xpactiv.asp

If it's just the Visio you need to remove, Just uninstall it..

Hope this was Informational
./Donny



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Accepted Solution

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techxero earned 800 total points
ID: 8024866
Your question is a bit badly phrased. Some new Microsoft products come with a feature called 'Activation' that is required to use them.

Here's an analogy, you by doors for your home. Some are now coming with locks on them. You can't buy locks on their own, and if you want to use the door you have to unlock them (activating a product). You can usually open the door a certain number of times before you HAVE to use the key. All doors are separate. Your friend installed a new door, with a lock on. The fact that this new door has a lock on it does not interfere with you having unlocked another door properly

You can uninstall Visio (Start>(Settings)> Control Panel>Add/Remove Programs>Microsoft Visio 2002>Remove) and you won't have to re-activate Windows XP or reinstall it, and it will also remove the Visio activation wizard

Or, you can activate Visio by using the wizard.

Or, you can use visio until it won't let you in until you activate it, and then uninstall it

REMEMBER whatever you do with visio it will not effect Windows XP

26.02.02 Tech Xero
a.willett@techxero.com
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Author Comment

by:DougNethercott
ID: 8026551
When Visio 2002 was installed, the person also run the activation wizard.  This permitted 10 uses before restricted functions.  I uninstalled and reinstalled but the activation is still live.  How do I remove the activation.
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by:Ghost_Hacker
ID: 8026724
By activating it :-)

The restriction is the default when an app hasn't be activated but simply installed.

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Expert Comment

by:donnyr10
ID: 8026868
Hi Doug

Found this document
www.microsoft.com/rus/docs/mpa/eng/mpa.doc 

Within it :

Q Is there a deactivation procedure?

A No, currently Microsoft products do not implement any such procedure.

Take a read
./Donny


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Expert Comment

by:NEOsporin
ID: 8030918
Yeah, it's not activated. More than likely, he applied a service pack to visio that allows a certain amount of open's before it needs activated. I have a registered version of Visio2002- then the Sp made me enter an activation key after 10 uses... it still opens... but that screen is annoying, I my call them up one day and get it "reactivated" but i don't mind the screen that much :)
GL
-NEO
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Author Comment

by:DougNethercott
ID: 8052852
Please answer my e-mail - many thanks.
Doug
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