How to build a 2008 Template for an ESX4i server

I need to build some 2008 server templates to use for deployment. Problem is that we use a license server for the our 2008 servers, so we don't need to put the product key in. So once the system is added to our domain, the license gets activated. Problem id that the templates need to be in a workgroup. So once a vm is deployed from this template, the vm is automatically added to the domain and the license is activated. But, the templates are not in the domain, so the license is not activated.

Now once in a while I need to boot these templates up as vm's to load new software and patches. But the problem is that the vm license expires since it is not activated.

So, is there a way to have the templates without the product key expiring and not needing to use the product keys.
rdefinoAsked:
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Jian An LimConnect With a Mentor Solutions ArchitectCommented:
okay.
let me get the question right.
your windows server 2008 template run out of licence because it is in trial mode.
you want it to be without product key.


The fact is. you need to have the licence key if it is going to run over x days.
just do it once, and it will not bother you again.

if you have alot of templates,  you can use command line to do it for you.

slmgr -ipk xxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxx (allows you to replace the current product key with the specified)

you can try to reset the licence but once day, it will just give up

slmgr -rearm (resets the licensing status of the machine)


http://www.tech-recipes.com/rx/2062/vista_activation_slmgr_command_options_explained/
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S00007359Cloud Engineering OfficerCommented:
You problem is

"Now once in a while I need to boot these templates up as vm's to load new software and patches. But the problem is that the vm license expires since it is not activated. "

You can re-arm the license grace period of the vm's.

http://www.mydigitallife.info/2008/06/09/how-to-automatically-rearm-and-extend-activation-grace-period-in-windows-vista-and-server-2008/
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rdefinoAuthor Commented:
S00007359,

this seems to only allow for an extension of  120 days and 240 days. Is that right.

If so that wouldn't work, I need these vm's to be good forever.
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Jian An LimSolutions ArchitectCommented:
thats why i said in my first message.
it cannot be done without a code especially you need it to be good forever

and do this with command line

slmgr -ipk xxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxx (allows you to replace the current product key with the specified)
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