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XP Activation Problem. Can not activate Windows XP Sp3 after repair

Posted on 2009-07-04
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Last Modified: 2012-05-07
Hello

I had to to do install REPAIR on my Legal OEM windows xp home sp3 Laptop.

Everything went fine and system boots up fine to the welcome screen only.

Then I see my 2 User accounts and when I try to LOG IN I get the message telling me to activate before it logs me IN.

That is fine with me. Its a legal copy of windows with no hardware change so I click YES.

That is THE END. I could watch my desktop for hours but activation wizzard doesnt pop up.

I have tried all the keyboard combinations with no luck. System is not frozen and I can move the mouse.

I have beed allowed to the safe mode once. That worked fine but you are not allowed to activate in a safe mode.

I have restarted many times and it still doesnt work. Something blocks the activation window fro popping up.

I have all the tools and skills to do offline edit of the registry, offline file copying or swapping.

Reinstalling is not an option, I need to start it up!!

1. Can I activate offline somehow?
2. Can I swap some files or registry entries to start up windows ??
3. Can I extend the activatiuon time to at least one day somehow?
4. Is there a hack or crack to activate my windows for 1 start in normal mode so I could be able to reactivate again once logged in and running.

Best

Michael
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Question by:Informer9
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Assisted Solution

by:slam69
slam69 earned 20 total points
ID: 24777110
try starting in safe mode with command prompt and then using teh following article to activate using command line

http://www.command-tab.com/2007/03/17/windows-xp-activation-in-5-minutes-or-less/
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by:Glen Knight
Glen Knight earned 20 total points
ID: 24777130
if you can do CTRL+ALT+DEL can you start task manager?
If so run a new task for CMD then run oobe/msoobe /a which will launch the Out of Box Experience and should allow you to activate
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Expert Comment

by:jcimarron
ID: 24777175
Informer9--Here are the normal ways to Activate
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/using/setup/winxp/register.mspx
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Assisted Solution

by:optoma
optoma earned 30 total points
ID: 24777303
When you repaired windows did you use an OEM cd or the laptop manufacturer's cd? Generally if you repair windows with the manufacture's cd it will not look for activation
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by:☠ MASQ ☠
ID: 24777416
I thnik optoma may have something here.  
What is the make of the computer?
What Service Pack version number is on the CoA sticker?
Did you repair using the manufacturer's CD or a generic OEM disk?
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by:jcimarron
ID: 24777441
Informer9--Regrets.  I posted the wrong link about how to activate XP.
I meant to post
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/307890
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Author Comment

by:Informer9
ID: 24777526
Thanks for all your help. Still those dont help me at all.

1. Safe mode doesnt work any more.
2. I have used OEM SP3 because I dont use OLD manufacturer's CD
3. Like I wrote CTRL+ALT+DEL or any other keystrokes dont work
4. There is nothing on the screen. Just wallpaper and cursor after I click OK to activate.
5. Im being logged off while I click NO to activate.

I need to find a way to play offline with the registry or the activation files. Some kind of the activator or file swap.

Still waiting for help.

Best

Michael
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by:☠ MASQ ☠
ID: 24777597
Not with the OEM disk
If you still have the old manufacturer's disk you can use this to create an install CD that matches the current version on your PC.  (see tutorial pages for nlite for how this is done).
The install as you have it at the moment won't activate because it is a hybrid of a manufacturer specific OEM install and the generic OEM repair.
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by:slam69
ID: 24777614
just a thought but there sno fire wall or such like blocking the activation being sent or recvd? have you tried over the phone activation?
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by:optoma
ID: 24777651
Although the manufacturer's cd may be old(only in service pack editions),it will fix your problem. You just have to pull down MS updates to bring your machine back to SP3 edition.
If you decide to try using the manufacturer's cd make sure it has a service pack on it-not the really old cd with no service pack builtin(that one dosn't repair, but wipes OS!
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Author Comment

by:Informer9
ID: 24777667
to masqueraid -  I have done it like that over hundred times and it always went fine. I know how to create custom sp cd with nlite or others but I simply hate branded windows

to slam69 - the wizard/window doesnt pop up at all. Im doing few activations a day and I know how to do it online or over the phone but I need a wizzard or working windows for that

Microsoft tech support is closed today. And they are probably not knowledgeable enough aka not willing to share an info like that ;)

I need to fix it asap before monday.

I need a hack or a way of starting Windows at least once and Im almost sure that then I will be able to activate just fine.

Its an old system with a change and that is ACTIVATION message is blocking me from going in for the first time after REINSTALL/ REPAIR which is crucial for the system to work properly.


Still waiting for a registry or file hack or activation trick to start it up.

Best

Michael

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Author Comment

by:Informer9
ID: 24777700
Come on guys. I dont even have manufacturers CD. They dont supply them.

It is really rare to get a windows CD with a laptop.

Probably 90% of all manufacturers gives us RECOVERY CD or RECOVERY PARTITION

Those dont reinstall or repair. FORMAT and new crappy outdated install is the only option.

I have never had it for this laptop. OEM XP SP3 CD  is all I have and it works fine with the SERIAL from the sticker. That also activates without any problems in a normal scenario with any computer.

In this case activation process is corupted and not starting - just that. I need to go past it somehow.

That would activate just fine like hundreds of my other activations when I get to the Activation Window and working system using "some" trick.

Best

Michael
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by:optoma
ID: 24777714
I've had the exact same problem on numerous occasions and still havn't came accross a reg fix or hack to fix it(lost many hours). Would certainly like if someone had a solution to it, other than what i have stated...
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by:Glen Knight
ID: 24777717
Under our members agreement we are not allowed to provide information on hacking or cracking.
However if you do a google search for Windows XP activation Crack I am sure lots of results will be returned
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by:optoma
ID: 24777735
Sorry,was wrong terminology to use. Basically meant to boot into the recovery console to try and fix matters!
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by:Informer9
ID: 24777774
I have searched Google for hours.

Optoma - its good to hear that Im not alone. Lets hope for a solution.

I know that all those hacks and cracks are forbidden and not good. I have legal Windows and a licence. I should be able to activate but the activator is broken.

Activators are not good anyway because I have never found one which is working with OFFLINE files and Offline Windows system.  You can use them in 30 days activation period while windows is fully working after the fake install.

I cant found one working for me Since my system has been already used and now need instant reactivation before 1st Log In.

I use VISTA on APPLE MACBOOK PRO which does the same thing every few weeks cause I use VISTA on 2 booting scenarios (boot camp and vmware fusion) . It is asking me to reactivate before log in but there the wizzard which is working fine. I call M$ and get an activation code and Im ready to go in minutes.

This laptop is a huge pain. that holds multi user config, encoded private data, many important settings very hard to recover. Many hashed passwords.



I would have never thought that f***g activation would stop me from using genuine software.


Still waiting for you ideas.

Best

Michael




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Author Comment

by:Informer9
ID: 24777849
to SLAM69  - I have managed to log to SAFE MODE with COMMAND LINE after few tries but your first reply doesnt work in SAFE Mode.

This link you send me activates windows only in NORMAL mode which doesnt work for me.

Im searching and searching and CAN NOT find a way to activate XP HOME SP3 in safe mode.

SO if anyone has an idea how to activate in SAFE MODE please let me know.

Best

Michael
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by:Glen Knight
ID: 24777951
When booting in normall mode before you click the activate now will it let you SHIFT+F10 to run task manager?
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by:Glen Knight
ID: 24777958
If so can you run my first command?
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Accepted Solution

by:
Informer9 earned 0 total points
ID: 24778034
to demazter - Nope, That doesnt work in a SAFE MODE. Windows activation works only in NORMAL Mode.

Nope. I cant click anything or use any keys while waiting for the activation wizard which doesnt pop UP...


but Ladies and Gents I HAVE FOUND THE SOLUTION MYSELF !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

That is actually pretty COOOOL, legal and comes from MicroS**t

SYS PREP  - windows experts and admins should think about it earlier


1.) log onto the PC using safemode with command prompt.
 2.) type in explorer in the command prompt.
3.) in my computer explore windows cd and copy the TOOLS folder to c:\
4.) in the tools folder there is a DEPLOY.cab right click on it and select EXTRACT TO and extract it to the tools folder. (this will create a new folder called deploy).
5.) open the deploy folder and run sysprep.
6.) select factory seal. The pc will shut down once this is completed.
7.) when the PC shuts down start it back up in normal mode. Once it has started up reboot the PC.
8.) if sysprep window shows up at every start up just rename DEPLOY folder to anything else. Could be also done in registry but I dont care to search for it


9) Activate your Windows - works like a charm !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

10) If you cant do number 9 for some reasons ;)  than follow the steps 1-8 again in 30 days

Thanks for trying to help


to Optoma - you have a solution ;)


Best

 Michael






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Expert Comment

by:slam69
ID: 24783195
Nice one, didnt think sysprep would work as the install was already in place but neat work did it come from m$?

Sorry for delay in replying tied up with a kids birthday lol
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Expert Comment

by:quilkin
ID: 24813108
The solution requires getting into Safe Mode, but I cannot do that. Informer9, you said that you originally had problems getting into Safe Mode as well, so how did you do it in the end?
My symptons are exactly as yours and this is the only thread I have found anywhere which matches it.
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Author Comment

by:Informer9
ID: 24813447
You need to follow my points.

Start your PC in a SAFE MODE with COMMAND PROMPT



Best

Michael
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Expert Comment

by:quilkin
ID: 24813702
Michael

That's what I tried but I get into the same loop - Windows wants to be activated but won't let me get any further (i.e. same problem in Normal mode or SafeMode with Command Prompt.) There's a message with the options 'Resolve Now' / 'Resolve Later'; the first option just goes back to login screen, second option gives  ablank screen.
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Author Comment

by:Informer9
ID: 24813849
It was booting straight into Windows without asking for activation when SAFE MODE WITH COMMAND LINE was chosen so I cant help you any further.

Try disconnecting internet connection.

Thats all I could think off.
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Expert Comment

by:TeeLow
ID: 24965682
Thanks, Michael for the solution above. I had the exact same problem you described and was at my wits end until I found this solution. There are a couple of changes I had to make to get it to work. I don't know if this is because I have a slightly different version of the Windows CD or what, but I'll post the changes here in case anyone else is in the same boat:
1 - I selected "Safe Mode with Command Prompt" but the command window never appeared. Ctrl-Alt-Del did bring up the Task Manager, however, and I was able to run explorer.exe from its file menu.
2 - On the CD, the TOOLS folder was inside the SUPPORT folder
3 - When I right-clicked the deploy.cab file there was no option for "Extract" so I manually created a folder, named it deploy and manually copied the contents of the cab file to it
After that, everything worked like a charm.
Thanks again for the solution!
-Tom
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Expert Comment

by:quilkin
ID: 25102207
Thanks TeeLow for additional help.
Eventually managed all this and got SysPrep to run. But it said 'there is an incompatiblity between this tool and the current operating system' and would not complete. The current OS and the CD are both XP SP2. But then I found from the  readme file that there is a known issue that sysprep cannot be used on a system that has been upgraded from SP1 to SP2.

So I am still without a working system. Guess its time to give up and reformat the drive.

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Expert Comment

by:divjyotsingh
ID: 25295508
I've had the exact same problem on numerous occasions and still havn't came accross a reg fix or hack to fix it(lost many hours). Would certainly like if someone had a solution to it, other than what i have stated...
0
 

Expert Comment

by:jdmailny
ID: 25521627
Attempt a install over the C:\Windows of XP, this could correct your problem. You must use the original CD that came with the system. And if its OEM you may still need to use the Xp product key.
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