Author Topic: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?  (Read 4270 times)

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Offline SredniTopic starter

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Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« on: December 04, 2023, 04:39:25 pm »
So, this is getting ridiculous.
The used M6800 I bought in a brick and mortar "ex-leasing" store (that came with a darkened backlit keyboard, the wrong adapter, a new 2015 battery reaching endlige, a substitute Dell battery with date code not matching manufacturing date that drops dead at 60%, and a 'new' SSD with 12 thousand hours of...testing I guess), not only had the OS installed on the wrong SSD, but Windows was not even activated.

So, I looked into the registry and found the product key. Then I went into control panel to see what are the steps for activating Windows, since I have the product key and I found this

https://youtu.be/0UkSOb3F12g?si=8tmdTdSuC-0c1tJl

Sorry, I'm on a cellphone and it's easier to link the video that to find the icons to put a multimegabyte screenshot in.

My question is... Why isn't windows recognizing the already present product key?
« Last Edit: December 04, 2023, 04:48:37 pm by Sredni »
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Offline jonpaul

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2023, 04:40:58 pm »
pirated key
OEM copy of W10

Buy a new W10 PK $29

j
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Offline SredniTopic starter

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2023, 04:53:02 pm »
Being this an ex-leasing computer, this should be an OEM copy of Win10. It should be legal to sell a PC and transfer the license, right?

I have looked for windows stickers on the body of the notebook and I found none, but this being an ex-corporate computer, maybe it didn't even come with one, unlike customer products.
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Offline janoc

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2023, 05:10:50 pm »
Being this an ex-leasing computer, this should be an OEM copy of Win10. It should be legal to sell a PC and transfer the license, right?

I have looked for windows stickers on the body of the notebook and I found none, but this being an ex-corporate computer, maybe it didn't even come with one, unlike customer products.

That depends ...

Corporate machines are usually not sold with licenses, the licenses come from a volume licensing deal the company has. The PC comes with an unactivated version of Windows that the corporate IT usually promptly wipes and replaces with their standard disk image.

Another possibility is that the license associated with that machine is activated elsewhere (e.g. on another PC of that company) so you, logically, can't activate it again, regardless of the fact that the PC has been sold. Common problem is decommissioning the old machine the license has been associated and with and forgetting to deactivate it on Microsoft's website. 

Win10 also has such a thing as an "electronic license" - if you have upgraded from XP/Win7, then your license likely got converted to this, associated to your Microsoft account - and then it can be reactivated only 3 times or so.

Then there are also the OEM licenses that are tied to the hw they were sold with and will cause problems activating them on a different PC. There is a provision for a PC upgrade/significant hw changes but also only limited amount of times.

And sometimes even legit licenses without any restrictionssimply won't activate for completely arbitrary reasons or bugs in the Windows activation process. I had to even call MS support once for this and their support guy was completely stumped why it won't activate. Legit retail boxed (not OEM) license, with all the paperwork in order - and it still refused to activate it.

It is a mess that MS has no motivation to fix because it only hurts retail customers, not businesses - and there  the goal is to push them to buy another license, not to keep upgrading/transferring their old one.
« Last Edit: December 04, 2023, 05:17:04 pm by janoc »
 

Offline PlainName

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2023, 05:11:45 pm »
Sounds like the corp wiped the disks before the vendor got hold of the computer, and then since there was no OS they just blasted whatever copy of Win10 they had around.

If you bought the PC as a working machine, complete with OS, then it's up to the vendor to provide that. If they don't you should be able to return it for a refund. Depending on country (I think you're shit out of luck with everything in the Antartic) you can give the vendor a chance to rectify the situation, then if they don't you can do it yourself and sue them for the cost of doing so.

If the product description didn't include an OS then you'll just have to cough for a pukka copy.
 

Online tunk

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #5 on: December 04, 2023, 05:42:52 pm »
If you go to Dell's support page and input the service tag,
you should be able to find out if it originally came with a
windows license.
 

Offline SredniTopic starter

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #6 on: December 04, 2023, 06:59:34 pm »
If you go to Dell's support page and input the service tag,
you should be able to find out if it originally came with a
windows license.

Even for a system this old?
I did try to find a Dell support page that would prompt me for the service tag, but to no avail.

I even asked Microsoft AI how to contact Dell (to report the 'new' battery whose manufacturing date clashes with the date code in the PPID) and it gave me an email address that is no longer active. It seems that in order to contact Dell one has to have a product with a non-expired warranty.
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Online tunk

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #7 on: December 04, 2023, 08:05:50 pm »
https://www.dell.com/support/home/en-us
Scroll down to "Identify your product or search support" and enter service tag.
Select "view product specs" to the right (below "quick links").
Just checked a laptop bought in 2011.
 

Offline SredniTopic starter

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #8 on: December 04, 2023, 08:14:59 pm »
Thank you, tunk.
It did work. It came with Win7pro eng-fre and also a license for Win 8.1 pro. Which means...? Was 8 upgradable for free to 10?

Lots and lots of info.
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Offline abeyer

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2023, 02:59:11 am »
Was 8 upgradable for free to 10?

It was, but no longer is if you didn't do the free upgrade then. (and is tied to your microsoft account, if you do, so if someone else did it will be on their account.)
 

Offline Haenk

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #10 on: December 06, 2023, 10:41:09 am »
I guess that's the problem.
The previous owner likely did not upgrade to 10, so you are essentially stuck with 7 or 8, whatever was on there. The seller did not dare to sell with 7/8 and just put 10 on it, but without activation.
So either use 7/8 with it (absolutely *not* a good idea), install Linux or buy 10.
Please be aware that most 10/11 licenses on ebay etc. are maybe not working (now or in the near future), that's a gamble for sure.

Sorry to say that, but have have been ripped off with this purchase it seems.
 

Offline TERRA Operative

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #11 on: December 06, 2023, 12:17:57 pm »
Just take it back for a refund already. Geez.
Where does all this test equipment keep coming from?!?

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Offline madires

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #12 on: December 06, 2023, 01:23:19 pm »
It's official: No more free Windows 10 upgrades (https://www.zdnet.com/article/its-official-no-more-free-windows-10-upgrades/)

PS, that's was end of September.
 

Offline PlainName

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #13 on: December 06, 2023, 01:52:36 pm »
Windows 10 is out of support in 2 years, so after that it will be W11 or ... what? If you have decent hardware that doesn't meet W11 specs, does Microsoft have a plan for you? I imagine W10 would work, but if they do to that what they did with W7 then that's not an option.
 

Offline coromonadalix

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #14 on: December 06, 2023, 06:03:08 pm »
12 is coming  loll
 

Offline SredniTopic starter

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #15 on: December 07, 2023, 01:47:07 am »
Just take it back for a refund already. Geez.

A refund can be hard to get with the laws in my third world country. The seller is... a bit particular (I cannot be more specific since I am thinking to sue him, but there are technicalities that needs to be ironed out before).
As I said before, mu guard was low because a friend bought his system there and was satisfied, but I did not expect this level of... How to say... strangeness.

I am also thinking of skipping the consumer association altogether and report him to the authorities.

Regarding windows, he has to install it on the smaller SSD, so I am sure it will be activated. How, that is another matter.
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Offline SredniTopic starter

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #16 on: December 07, 2023, 01:57:16 am »
Windows 10 is out of support in 2 years, so after that it will be W11 or ... what? If you have decent hardware that doesn't meet W11 specs, does Microsoft have a plan for you? I imagine W10 would work, but if they do to that what they did with W7 then that's not an option.

I am still using xp on one of my system (!), and I wanted to install Linux on this and keep win10 as an alternative OS when I have to have a windows system to access certain files (eventually airgapped). I used to say that seven would have been my last Microsoft os but I have to admit I kind of like win@0's interface.

Oh, and to add to the list of strangeness, the OS came already configured with an admin access (I am using it now only to test the hardware), which is another big no-no in terms of security.
(This is why I need a valid product.key so that I can install it anew from an iso - I could not trust a system as it is now).

Oh, and I no longer trust this friend of mine 😁
« Last Edit: December 07, 2023, 01:58:50 am by Sredni »
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Online BeBuLamar

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #17 on: December 07, 2023, 11:24:48 am »
I don't know how old you M6800 is but I guess it's about 10 years old. If so it may came with Windows 7 and in order to have Win10 free you would have to install Win7 but you have to find a Dell copy of Win7 because such a copy would recognize a Dell computer and activate it. Then after you have a valid Win7 running on your computer you can install Win10 upgrade and it will activate based on the fact that you have a vaild actiavation of Win7. Ask the guy who sells you the computer he should have the DVD. Most corporations immediately install a copy of Windows with their own license and not used the license that came with the computer. They often have a lot of those discs laying around.
« Last Edit: December 07, 2023, 11:27:06 am by BeBuLamar »
 

Online BeBuLamar

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #18 on: December 07, 2023, 12:05:38 pm »
Sounds like the corp wiped the disks before the vendor got hold of the computer, and then since there was no OS they just blasted whatever copy of Win10 they had around.

If you bought the PC as a working machine, complete with OS, then it's up to the vendor to provide that. If they don't you should be able to return it for a refund. Depending on country (I think you're shit out of luck with everything in the Antartic) you can give the vendor a chance to rectify the situation, then if they don't you can do it yourself and sue them for the cost of doing so.

If the product description didn't include an OS then you'll just have to cough for a pukka copy.

First as Janoc the post above yours said, most corporation immediately install their own disk image with their own license deal with Microsoft. Also before they scrap their computers they certainly wipe the hard drive off so no vendor can ever get a pc from a corporation that has anything on it.
 

Offline janoc

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #19 on: December 07, 2023, 08:29:11 pm »
Also before they scrap their computers they certainly wipe the hard drive off so no vendor can ever get a pc from a corporation that has anything on it.


Eeeh, you would be surprised.

Just this week we have recovered a harddrive with surveilance videos from a money transport truck. Yes, the armoured thing they use to transport cash between shops and banks. All it took to "recover" it was to take it out of the camera server.

You could find literally entire servers  with customer data on them. Even medical info ... Wiping drives or, better, destroying/disposing of them separately from the computer is common - but very far from universal ...
 

Online wraper

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #20 on: December 07, 2023, 08:48:11 pm »
pirated key
OEM copy of W10

Buy a new W10 PK $29

j
For this money you can only buy scam, not actual license. At best it will be the same license key sold to multiple people.
First of all OP should try installing windows 10 from scratch, there could be a win 10 license digitally assigned to this HW already that won't work if a wrong win 10 version was installed. If that does not work, this laptop came with win 7 ultimate or win 8 pro license stored in the bios. Microsoft recently shut down win 10/11 activation with win 7/8 keys but I'm not sure if another loophole of installing win 10 over activated win 7/8 windows installation was shut down too.
« Last Edit: December 08, 2023, 11:34:31 am by wraper »
 

Offline rdl

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #21 on: December 08, 2023, 05:21:24 am »
Have Microsoft changed things since Windows 7? You could always just run Win 7 un-activated with no problems, just a couple of minor annoyances. And those were pretty easy to get rid of if you wanted to make the effort.
 

Offline PlainName

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #22 on: December 08, 2023, 01:56:14 pm »
Until a month or so ago I ran used an unactivated W10 on a small box. Bought it originally as set top box replacement and it had activated W10 installed. But I wanted W7, so wiped and installed that, but of course some drivers were unobtainable (thanks Microsoft!) so eventually I gave up and installed W10, thinking it would still be activated. It wasn't so it worked fine except for a watermark onscreen, and then at some point that disappeared. So far as I could tell, it worked fine except that it couldn't be customised.

Replaced it with something else last month so don't know if that situation has changed in the meantime.
 

Offline coromonadalix

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #23 on: December 08, 2023, 02:06:56 pm »
if you don't get a digital activation license... normally it will not reactivate by itself ...

and yes  you have trick floating around for w10 activation's,  really easy   loll
 

Offline rdl

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Re: Why can't my copy of Win10 pro be activated?
« Reply #24 on: December 08, 2023, 03:44:24 pm »
I have Windows 7 on my living room computer which is connected to the TV. I use it for games and Youtube only. Been using it without activating it for 10 years.
 


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