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After install of Vista sp1, machines needed reactivation. RRS feed

  • Question

  • I have had two Vista HP workstations (one Vista Biz, one Ultimate), after the install of Service pack 1 flip the machines to a "three day activation window".  Both would not let me do an Internet re-validation.  Both said the product key was in use.  Both required a manual call in.  One is a VL/KMS key and needed me to call in and get it manually reactivated.

     

    I made no hardware changes, whatsoever, only installed the Service pack.

     

    On one machine the Realtek audio driver was installed prior to the service pack being offered up (as per the expected Vista experience).

     

    So, why am I two for two here with machines flipping to a three day reactivation requirement?

     

    Wednesday, March 19, 2008 3:56 AM

Answers

  • Hello Susan,

     

     Susan Bradley wrote:

    I have had two Vista HP workstations (one Vista Biz, one Ultimate), after the install of Service pack 1 flip the machines to a "three day activation window".

     

    Please see support doc:

    "You are prompted to activate Windows Vista after you install Windows Vista Service Pack 1"

    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/947519/en-us

     

     

     Susan Bradley wrote:

      Both would not let me do an Internet re-validation.  Both said the product key was in use.  Both required a manual call in. 

     

    Yes, when a 3-day reactivation event is triggered, the user can only re-activate by phone. In some situations it may be required to talk to a Live Activation rep for a Override Re-activation.

     

    In situations where you just reinstalled Vista and needed to re-activate (and no 3-day reactivation event was triggered) you would be able to re-activate over the internet.

     

     Susan Bradley wrote:

     One is a VL/KMS key and needed me to call in and get it manually reactivated.

     

    Since KMS Client versions of Vista can only be activated by connecting to a KMS server, (http://www.microsoft.com/licensing/resources/vol/ActivationFAQ/default.mspx) how where you able to Activate by Phone?

     

     Susan Bradley wrote:

    I made no hardware changes, whatsoever, only installed the Service pack.

     

    On one machine the Realtek audio driver was installed prior to the service pack being offered up (as per the expected Vista experience).

     

    So, why am I two for two here with machines flipping to a three day reactivation requirement?

     

     

    Part of the Windows Genuine process requires that you reactivate your computer when certain hardware is changed or when certain hardware device drivers are changed. Windows Vista Service Pack 1 may update some installed device drivers. Therefore, you may be prompted to activate Windows Vista again.

     

     

    Thank you,

    Darin Smith

    WGA Forum Manager

    Wednesday, March 19, 2008 7:42 PM

All replies

  • How was SP1 installed?  Via Windows Update (the recommended procedure) or via the Standalone version?

    Wednesday, March 19, 2008 12:58 PM
    Moderator
  •  

    The first time via the TechNet WU registry edit to make it download from WU, the second one the WU offering from yesterday.

     

    Both were WU based installs.

    Wednesday, March 19, 2008 3:44 PM
  • Hello Susan,

     

     Susan Bradley wrote:

    I have had two Vista HP workstations (one Vista Biz, one Ultimate), after the install of Service pack 1 flip the machines to a "three day activation window".

     

    Please see support doc:

    "You are prompted to activate Windows Vista after you install Windows Vista Service Pack 1"

    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/947519/en-us

     

     

     Susan Bradley wrote:

      Both would not let me do an Internet re-validation.  Both said the product key was in use.  Both required a manual call in. 

     

    Yes, when a 3-day reactivation event is triggered, the user can only re-activate by phone. In some situations it may be required to talk to a Live Activation rep for a Override Re-activation.

     

    In situations where you just reinstalled Vista and needed to re-activate (and no 3-day reactivation event was triggered) you would be able to re-activate over the internet.

     

     Susan Bradley wrote:

     One is a VL/KMS key and needed me to call in and get it manually reactivated.

     

    Since KMS Client versions of Vista can only be activated by connecting to a KMS server, (http://www.microsoft.com/licensing/resources/vol/ActivationFAQ/default.mspx) how where you able to Activate by Phone?

     

     Susan Bradley wrote:

    I made no hardware changes, whatsoever, only installed the Service pack.

     

    On one machine the Realtek audio driver was installed prior to the service pack being offered up (as per the expected Vista experience).

     

    So, why am I two for two here with machines flipping to a three day reactivation requirement?

     

     

    Part of the Windows Genuine process requires that you reactivate your computer when certain hardware is changed or when certain hardware device drivers are changed. Windows Vista Service Pack 1 may update some installed device drivers. Therefore, you may be prompted to activate Windows Vista again.

     

     

    Thank you,

    Darin Smith

    WGA Forum Manager

    Wednesday, March 19, 2008 7:42 PM
  • Sorry, I said KMS, I meant MAK.  The Version of VL that allows you to authenticate to Microsoft.

     

    Wow, gang.  This was only a Service pack and nothing else.  And it wasn't obvious that I had three days (I knew to look for it this time). 

     

    Furthermore, if this occurs in a firm wide setting, neither one of the two allowed for Internet activation and I had to call in each one.

     

    Thursday, March 20, 2008 6:31 AM
  •  

    Okay so installing SP1 overa a MAK/VL and OEM license "may" request a reactivation, what occurs in a KMS setting in an Enterprise?  Are they able to reactivate with the KMS server quietly with no Administrator checking on their status?

     

    Can you give feedback that as a legal customer of Microsoft, in my opinion, this is going too far.  Patching and Service packs should not trigger a very silent manditory three day reactivation that demands that I have to call in.

     

    May I aso request that in that KB that you state that this type of activation may cause someone to have to call in, that Internet activation is not allowed and that the expected behavior is that it states that the "Product key is in use".  Please provide in that KB what is expected in this process so that others know that this is "normal".

    Thursday, March 20, 2008 3:42 PM
  •  Susan Bradley wrote:
    Can you give feedback that as a legal customer of Microsoft, in my opinion, this is going too far.  Patching and Service packs should not trigger a very silent manditory three day reactivation that demands that I have to call in.

     

    May I aso request that in that KB that you state that this type of activation may cause someone to have to call in, that Internet activation is not allowed and that the expected behavior is that it states that the "Product key is in use".  Please provide in that KB what is expected in this process so that others know that this is "normal".

     

    As an MS MVP who "toils" in the Windows Update newsgroup (among others) and as a Windows user, I must second my colleague's comment and request here.

     

    On a related note, it is patently absurd that installing a driver update offered via Windows Update is enough to qualify a machine for reactivation upon installing Vista SP1.

    Thursday, March 20, 2008 9:51 PM
  •  PA Bear [MS MVP] wrote:
     Susan Bradley wrote:
    Can you give feedback that as a legal customer of Microsoft, in my opinion, this is going too far.  Patching and Service packs should not trigger a very silent manditory three day reactivation that demands that I have to call in.

     

    May I aso request that in that KB that you state that this type of activation may cause someone to have to call in, that Internet activation is not allowed and that the expected behavior is that it states that the "Product key is in use".  Please provide in that KB what is expected in this process so that others know that this is "normal".

     

    As an MS MVP who "toils" in the Windows Update newsgroup (among others) and as a Windows user, I must second my colleague's comment and request here.

     

    On a related note, it is patently absurd that installing a driver update offered via Windows Update is enough to qualify a machine for reactivation upon installing Vista SP1.



    I wholeheartedly agree.  This is definitely going to be problematical. 
    Thursday, March 20, 2008 10:36 PM
  • Hello all,

     

     I just wanted to post and tell you that I will be speaking to all your points. But first, since I don't normally work much in the Volume License space, I need to track down the person/group that can give me the answers to your Volume MAK questions. And as for the other questions, that I'm confident I know the answers to, I want to double check and get confirmation that I do, in fact, know what I'm talking about .

     

      So I'm not ignoring you, I'm just getting my ducks in a row.

     

    Thank you,

    Darin Smith

    WGA Forum Manager

     

     

     

    Thursday, March 20, 2008 11:45 PM
  • Reactivation is unknown. I have tried every single item on all found lists to get SP1 to show up in Microsoft Update to no avail. But after reading all the horror stories, I guess that is a good thing.
    Friday, March 21, 2008 4:16 PM
  •  pmruzicka wrote:
    Reactivation is unknown. I have tried every single item on all found lists to get SP1 to show up in Microsoft Update to no avail. But after reading all the horror stories, I guess that is a good thing.

    Your post is OT in this thread.  That being said, see this KB article:

     

    Windows Vista Service Pack 1 is not available for installation from Windows Update and is not offered by Automatic Updates:
    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/948343 

    Friday, March 21, 2008 6:43 PM
  • Compter is an  Asus F3sr laptop\notebook (just a few weeks old)
    Vista Home premium pre-installed
    Just re-inserted an image of Vista OS after instaling SP1 (twice).

    Tried using auto-windows update to update vista (update now hidden from viewing\showing there)
    Also tried using the full download version and doing a manual install with the same result

    A sound driver was installed WITHOUT prior notification or input from myself. 
    (Run auto-windows update to check for the likes of this prior to installation of SP1 and was told only update available or required was SP1)  This of itself is not too serious other than MS taking it upon themselves to decide what drivers are installed onto my PC (I do not like installing MS drivers).. I should have (as Susan said) been notified that this PC required this driver update.

    After the instalation of SP1 (both installs) I could no longer access the Internet. (wireless connection) Also AVG (freeware) stopped working and received message to go to AVG site for more info (??? - how to do with no connection - ???) When I checked at the end of last week information stated that only the Suite was affected and that the freeware version was not affected by this update.

    As for the re-activation I did not check this out in control panel because of inability to access Internet was a more serious issue, I will check this out (reactivation issue - which should NOT happen with an SP update - or any MS update) either later today or tomorrow by re-installing SP1.

    Just bought another XP Prof (about 2 weeks ago so SP1 is not an infuencing factor here and after release of XP SP3 I will be removing Vista and going back to a decent OS


    Monday, March 24, 2008 2:31 PM
  • Monday, March 24, 2008 2:59 PM
    Moderator
  • First off, I wanted to thank you for the feedback.


     Susan Bradley wrote:

    Wow, gang.  This was only a Service pack and nothing else.  And it wasn't obvious that I had three days (I knew to look for it this time). 

     

    I am not sure if the Re-activation Required notification is different on a MAK copy of Vista, but on consumer level Vista, if SP1 triggers a Hardware Out of Tolerance, the notification that is given is the same notification as is given any other time Vista goes Hardware Out of Tolerance and requires re-activation.

     

     Susan Bradley wrote:

    Furthermore, if this occurs in a firm wide setting, neither one of the two allowed for Internet activation and I had to call in each one.

     

    Okay so installing SP1 overa a MAK/VL and OEM license "may" request a reactivation, what occurs in a KMS setting in an Enterprise?  Are they able to reactivate with the KMS server quietly with no Administrator checking on their status?

     

     

    For Companies using Volume Licenses, there MAK licenses, used for "Remote Users" that are not connected to the company's network and KMS Clients which Activates against a KMS Server which is inside the company's network

     My understanding is that the KMS client either doesn't experience a Hardware Out of Tolerance event or if it does, the client will just reconnect to the KMS Server and reactivate automatically.

     Since MAK Licenses are for "Remote Users" outside the company's network, if the Vista needs to be reactivated, the individual users would take care of reactivating their computer.


     Susan Bradley wrote:

    Can you give feedback that as a legal customer of Microsoft, in my opinion, this is going too far.  Patching and Service packs should not trigger a very silent manditory three day reactivation that demands that I have to call in.

      The 3 day reactivation (aka Hardware Out of Tolerance) is not specific to SP1. Anytime a significant change to hardware has occurred, Windows (XP AND Vista) will go into a Hardware Out of Tolerance state and require reactivation. You may say "then why is there a chance that SP1 may cause a reactivation when no hardware was changed?" The reason is that recently we have found that some hardware companies have written Drivers that change the Hardware ID of the hardware the driver controls. Windows looks at the Hardware IDs to determines if a Hardware Out of Tolerance event has occurred. And as it is explained in the support doc "You are prompted to activate Windows Vista after you install Windows Vista Service Pack 1" (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/947519/en-us) this is why SP1 may cause a Hardware Out of Tolerance event and require reactivation. Microsoft is working with these hardware manufacturers to help them correct this issue.

     

      As for the reactivation notice being "very silent", again, MAK license may have a different Reactivation notice then consumer level Vista, but I find that unlikely. The reminder, given to the user, that they need to reactivate, is the same regardless if the Out of Tolerance was a result of installing SP1 or from the user changing hardware or installing a driver. The reminder has not changed since Vista was released.


     Susan Bradley wrote:
     
    May I aso request that in that KB that you state that this type of activation may cause someone to have to call in, that Internet activation is not allowed and that the expected behavior is that it states that the "Product key is in use".  Please provide in that KB what is expected in this process so that others know that this is "normal".

     

      Any consumer level Vista (and MAK License that needs it's “activation limit” increased) that goes into Hardware Out of Tolerance will be required to Activate by Phone. This is the same for a Hardware Out of Tolerance event caused by SP1 or by the a user hardware change or driver install and has been that way since Vista was launched.

     

    NOTE: I was just informed that because SP1 has a chance of triggering a reactivation event and to minimize the customer inconvenience, the Product Activation group has initiated a change that will allow Vistas (in a Hardware Out of Tolerance state) to be re-activated online (by the internet). This change should be initiated shortly, if it hasn't already.

     

      That being said, I do agree that the KB should be updated to explain what the error "Product key is in use" actually means. In fact, I have been pushing for the error message, itself, to be changed to something more informative. Whether that will happen, I do not know, but I will work on getting the KB updated, in the mean time.

     

     PA Bear [MS MVP] wrote:

      On a related note, it is patently absurd that installing a driver update offered via Windows Update is enough to qualify a machine for reactivation upon installing Vista SP1.

      

     

      It really depends on how big of a Hardware ID change was made by the Driver. In addition, Vista's Tolerance to Hardware changes is cumulative. Meaning, a user may have added a new hard drive 9 months ago, changed out a graphic card 2 months ago and then installed SP1 that installed driver that changed a Hardware ID.  By themselves, none of these events were enough to trigger a Hardware Out of Tolerance event, but added together, they exceeded the tolerance and Vista required re-activation.

     

     

      One last thing I wanted to talk about is the Grace Timer and OEM hacks. Users that had either of these hacks installed (knowingly or unknowingly) and the installes SP1, will become unactivated and will not be able to reactivate using the same Product Key they used to install the hack with.

     

      Users in this Scenario will have a different user experiance, after installing SP1, then any other user. After each reboot, they will have a black background and a dialog asking them to Activate now or Activate later (The Activate Later button will not become clickable untill 15 secs has elapsed).

     

      The Activate Now button will direct the user to either enter a Valid Product Key, that they already have or to buy a Valid Product key.

     

      The Activate Later (after waiting 15 sec) will allow the user to use Vista (no reduced functionality) but with a black background (they can chage the background, but after an hour it will revert back to black)

     

    Basically if you come accross someone that mentions something along the lines of having to wait 15sec to use Vista and/or having a black backgroud, direct them to this forum and I will work with them.

     

    Thanks again for your feedback,

    Darin Smith

    WGA Forum Manager

     

    Monday, March 24, 2008 8:58 PM
  • No, thank you. 

     

    One item of feedback though.  You say "For Companies using Volume Licenses, there MAK licenses, used for "Remote Users" that are not connected to the company's network and KMS Clients which Activates against a KMS Server which is inside the company's network "

     

    In a small network like mine, I use MAKs even inside my network.  I have less than 25 vista licenses and you need 25 to make a KMS server implementation worth while.  Even us little guys buy volume licenses. And those that have not yet rolled out KMS servers may use MAK's as well.

     

    Thank you very much for taking this action.

    Monday, March 24, 2008 11:22 PM
  • Yes, I see your point.

     

      I had posed a similar question to the Volume Licensing person, I had talked to. I had asked what about MAK computers that are attached to a network, that may all need to be reactivated at the same time. He had responded that converting the MAKs to KMSs would be a more logical network setup.  And although we never touched upon the question of networks that don't qualify for a KMS server, I believe the feeling is that less then 25 MAKs needing to be re-activated, within a network, wouldn't cause a undue burden to the administrator. Now, I've never administrated a network so I can't say if that is correct assumtion or not, but as far as SP1 is concerned, the question becomes (sumewhat) academic since MAKs should fall under the change that allows Vistas, in a Hardware Out of Tolerance state, to reactivate over the Internet (vs having to call and talk to a live activation rep).

     

      On a side note, I really wish we had a clearing house for real world Volume Licensing scenarios and Microsoft's "best practices" for each scenario...or better yet, a Forum where people (users and Microsoft) could discuss these type of issues. Because, for these forums, my target audience is the consumer end user segment. So my VL knowledge is low and almost completely secound hand. 

     

    I hope I have been helpfull,

    Darin

    Tuesday, March 25, 2008 7:14 PM
  • Yes you have, thank you very much.

     

    VL customers would probably call their Technical Account Manager.. I'm too little for one is all :-)

     

    Tuesday, March 25, 2008 8:01 PM