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Windows Adtivation after imaging

Hello,

After imaging a Windows 7 machine with Clonezilla, we sent it out in the field and it worked fine for a few days and now all of a sudden it is throwing an activation error and we were required to put in the license key to fix the problem.  Is there something we should have done after cloning that would have prevented this behavior?  We don't want to send out another one and go through this again.

Thanks,
Mike
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Dan Craciun
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The image was sysprepped before cloning.  Also, the license key was put into the clone before sending it on it's way.  We are using MS Volume license keys for the clones.  Any more thoughts?
The restored image still has to be activated. That isn't automatic.
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I did activate the restored image with the correct MVLS license key.  The computers are the same model, Dell OptiPlex 790.  I did not check hardware differences though.  I will look into that.  But what gets me is that I put in the license key before sending it out?
If you activated the machine before sending it and now it requires activation again, then I see 2 possibilities:
1. you activated using a KMS server that is not available in the new location
2. someone in the new location moved the hdd to another system, thus triggering re-activation.
Do any of you think a hardware issue would cause this behavior?  I am not 100% confident that the machine we restored the image to was okay to put back in circulation.  It seemed fine when we restored the image, but we are having some other software issues as well.
Possible, but not likely.
A failing hard drive could corrupt the activation information, but the probability of a failed sector containing exactly that information is very low.
Okay, I didn't think so either, but it's getting to that point.  Anyway, I appreciate all of the great suggestions here and will divvy up points accordingly.  Thank you for all of your help.
Thanks again.