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Repeatedly Activation of Windows 7

airok asked
Hi Experts,

A very strange issue I've encountered recently.  I'm deploying new windows7 in the company, we are using Microsoft Windows 7 MAK license key.  For some reason, some machines need to be activated repeatedly in a period of time.  Time varies, but usually from a week to two, the machine would become "inactive", then i need to enter the key to activate it again.

Anyone has seen this before?

Many Thanks!
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thanks for the link
but we dont have the service  Software Licensing running at all. the only one close to this one is Software Protection service which is in Automatic (delay).  I tried to restart the service but still no luck.
Ayman BakrSenior Consultant

I think you have some issues with the genuinity of your Microsoft product. Please see these similar issues on this thread. What you can do is Download the Microsoft Genuine Advantage Diagnostic tool from http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=56062
- Open the Microsoft Genuine Advantage diagnostic tool on the affected server -> Click Run -> then click Continue.
 The tool will scan your computer, and then give you a summary of your computer's settings and system details that will help someone from Microsoft diagnose the problem. If you have enterprise agreements then open a ticket and provide them with the resultant report. Alternatively you can open a new thread in the microsoft forum where you can click 'Copy' on the tool and paste the text onto your thread in the forum.
Hope this helps.


i dont think we've exceeded the MAK usage limit. As i logged in MS license page and checked, we should still have quota.

i ran the diagnostic tool on one of the problematic machine, and saw the following:
Name: Windows(R) 7, Professional edition
Description: Windows Operating System - Windows(R) 7, VOLUME_KMSCLIENT channel
Activation ID:
Application ID:
Extended PID:
Installation ID:
Partial Product Key:
License Status: Notification
Notification Reason: 0xC004F056.
Remaining Windows rearm count: 2
Trusted time: 12/6/2011 2:52:31 PM
Please use slmgr.vbs /ato to activate and update KMS client information in order to update values.

it's kind of strange that it's showing KMS here since I used a MAK license key to activate the windows.  Now i am suspecting it's the problem of the image that i used for deploying Win7 .....

Ayman BakrSenior Consultant

It might be the image that is problematic - however one important thing to note is that it shows you what to run (slmgr.vbs). Although you are not showing the complete diagnostic here try running the following:
1- Click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories, right-click Command Prompt, and then click Run as.
2- Click The following user, and then select Administrator in the User name list.
3- Click OK.
4- At a command prompt, type the following command, and then press ENTER:
These steps are suggested in Microsoft's KB938450: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/938450.
If you still can't resolve the issue then the MAK might be blocked at Microsoft. You need to call Microsoft to obtain another MAK license.
Use the correct image and you should be good to go :)


Do you think worth trying to run
slmgr.vbs /cpky
slmgr.vbs /upk
in order to uninstall the KMS info on the machine?  Since we never have a KMS server for activation ...
does the command above remove completely the KMS info on the machine? or extra steps are needed

i want to try if activating with our MAK license after removing KMS info could fix the problem... dont really want to create another image.
You could try removing KMS and then using your  MAK key to activate one of your computers.
KMS and MAK Activation Scenarios


slmgr.vbs /upk [ActivationID]

This option uninstalls the product key of the current Windows edition. After a restart, the system will be in an Unlicensed state unless a new product key is installed.
Optionally, you can use the [Activation ID] parameter to specify a different installed product.
This operation must be run from an elevated command prompt.

I personally would be recreating a deployment image as there is nothing like a fresh start.

Ayman BakrSenior Consultant
Really very informative link rrjmin0.

airok I understand you may have installed the OS and several other applications along with other configurations/tuning. So it might be annoying to having redo all of that.

In the link provided by rrjmin0, Microsoft stated at the end that Windows 7 and 2008 images install automatically with KMS licenses. However, you can convert it to MAK either during installation with unattended setup or after the installation has taken place using slmgr.vbs /ipk <MAK key>.

Personally, I wouldn't be going through the hassle of reinstalling and reconfiguring all the applications. I would run slmgr.vbs /ipk <MAK key> for conversion - especially that there is no suspection of any corruption on the image as per se. But, you need to be aware that using slmgr.vbs doesn't try to activate automatically over the internet. So you have to follow it with slmgr.vbs /ato.

This brings me back to the diagnostics report you have posted earlier where close at the end it asked for running slmgr.vbs /ato. Which seems you might have used slmgr.vbs in the first hand for MAK activation however, it was still seen as KMS since it didn't automatically activate through internet. If this was the case then a slmgr.vbs /ato should do for you issue. Otherwise, if you had manually activated then you need to reactivate (to convert to MAK) through:
1. slmgr.vbs /ipk <MAK key>
2. slmgr.vbs /ato
Ayman BakrSenior Consultant

Just to stress you require elevated privilege to run the slmgr.vbs


problem solved. thanks for rrjmin0 & mutawadi's comments!
cool, good to see that your up and running
Ayman BakrSenior Consultant

I am glad too.

Thanks goes to airok for the points and to all the experts (ESP. Here to  rrjmin0) for the opportunity of gaining additional knowledge from them.