Why does Win2008 VM require activtion when restored to am alternate Hyper-V Host

Hi, I have a Windows 2008 SP2 Standard Edition server running on a  Hyper-V physical host. When I back it up and then restore it to an alternate physical host running Hyper-V, the VM requires Windows acivation, and after the activation it comes up as a "blank" server with none of my applications installed.  I have tried various methods of restoring it to the alternate server, including copying the files from one physical hos to another, as well as running a restore job with Backup Exec 12.5. I get the same results either way. I also tried using the Hyper-V  export and import tools and I get the same result.

Can anyone please tell me how I can move the VM to an alternate physical host and have it start normally, with all apps installed and no activation required?

Thanks for any assistance!
bradberAsked:
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msmamjiCommented:
do you have snapshot associated with the particular VM?
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PolkSystemsCommented:
Each time the Windows 2008 system starts, the licensing algorithm checks to see if any of the hardware has changed. If enough of the hardware changes, it believes that the installation has been moved to a new system and kicks off a need for re-activation.

The signatures of the hardware on your new host is different that the signatures on the hardware where the virtual machine was originally hosted. Because of this, re-activation is kicked off.

This is not an issue with Windows 2008 licenses purchased with a volume license agreement.
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bradberAuthor Commented:
Thanks PolkSystems, I will look into the license situation and get back to you to let you know if that is indeed the issue.
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PowerToTheUsersCommented:
@ PolkSystems: I don't think that is relevant in this case:
- As these are virtual machines, the hardware-changes are abstracetd: the virtual hardware is still the some, so it doens't require re-activation.
- In the question it's not only the re-activition problem, but the server also comes up as a blank server, without the installed applications. If re-activation fails, applications don't get uninstalled.

mdmamji's answer is more relevant: if snapshots are defined for the VM, it looks as if you're trying to migrate (or move, or export, or...) the base-VM  without the latest snapshots applied.
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bradberAuthor Commented:
msmamji:

Yes, I do have a snapshot.  I have tried setting up the VM on the alternate physical host using two different methods: I have copied just the .vhd file and set up a new VM without the snapshots; and I have used the export/import  feature that includes the snapshots. I get the same result either way.
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msmamjiCommented:
If you can, would you delete and merge snapshot and then you export and import on the other Host.

Note: If you like to sustain the VM with a snapshot, I suggest you do an export before deleting the snapshot.

Regards,
Shahid
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bradberAuthor Commented:
Thanks for your input, "PowerToTheUsers",

it seems like you are on to something, we need to figure out why it is coming up as a blank server. Do you think it would work if I delete the snapshot?
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PowerToTheUsersCommented:
I guess there are two options:
- delete the snapshot on the source-server, but by that you are reverting to the original server, without any apps installed. So that's probably not what you want.
- apply (merge) the snapshot on the source-server. By that you are merging the original server with the current snapshot, so you can't go back later... If there's no reason to keep the snapshot-situation, this will be the best option.

I don't know if there's a possibility to copy the two "states": both the blank machine and the snapshot... If downtime is not a problem, you might try this: http://itproctology.blogspot.com/2008/06/how-to-manually-merge-hyper-v-snapshots.html 
When following those steps, there will still be a snapshotted version on the source-server, and a working VM on the new server with the apps installed.
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bradberAuthor Commented:
The snapshot was made after the apps were installed. I thought the snapshots would allow me to revert to the specific point in time when the snapshot was made.  Are you saying that if I delete the snapshots, the existing VM on the original physical host will revert to a blank server?
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PowerToTheUsersCommented:
If you made the snapshot after the apps were installed, I don't understand why you get a app-less, non-activated server after the copy...
Are you sure there wasn't another, earlier snapshot? Are you sure there's only one AVHD-file? Maybe add some screenshots of the situation?
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bradberAuthor Commented:
Sorry Guys, I am making no progress here. I must be missing something, I think it is probably a combination of different things. I tried the process in the link posted by "power to the users" and the merge fails with the error" The operation was passed an invalid parameter."  There is only one snapshot and only one avhd file.   Not sure what the problem is, I am going to close the question for now. Thanks for all of your input.
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