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key re-entry being required RRS feed

  • Question

  • Greetings!

    We have 25 Lenovo S10 systems that we have reimaged using a syspreped image.  When the image is first booted it asks for a product key.  We enter in the one from the bottom of the netbook, and there is a certain assumption that we should no longer have to do anything.  I am told they are connected to a external network and should be able to validate.  When they are re-booted some had windows validation issues.  this made us look closer at the systems.

    When they are rebooted, they say they need to be activated.  we hit the link to activate and are told they are not valid.  At this point we can:

    1. call microsofts automated phone service.  This works and the device is activated....if all we were doing was 25 systems this would be fine....but we are planning on doing a lot more.

    2. Buy a new copy of windows....uhmmm..no.

    3. Enter in a different product key.  We try this, and re-enter in the EXACT same key....and it works.

    We are using a PXE Server to install the sysprepped images.  We have consulted with microsoft and the OEM to verify this was allowed and legal. 

    So I geuss the question is....is why does the first entry of the key not take, and force us to re-enter it?

     

    Tuesday, November 9, 2010 1:42 AM

Answers

  • "We enter in the one from the bottom of the netbook"

    That is your problem, the OEM_COA keys require telephone activation. This is to protect against the keys being stolen as was common with OEM computers when XP first came out.

    Thanks

    Carl

    • Marked as answer by Darin Smith MS Tuesday, November 9, 2010 8:41 PM
    • Unmarked as answer by Greywar777 Thursday, November 11, 2010 10:55 PM
    • Marked as answer by Darin Smith MS Friday, November 12, 2010 7:59 PM
    • Unmarked as answer by Greywar777 Saturday, November 13, 2010 12:10 AM
    • Marked as answer by Darin Smith MS Thursday, November 18, 2010 8:38 PM
    Tuesday, November 9, 2010 2:31 AM
  • Hi Greywar777,

    This forum is for support of Validation (Non-Genuine) issues. Your Validation issue was resolved by Activating.  Carl posted that the resolution to Activation related Validation issue (where an OEM_COA key is involved) was to Activate by Phone because that is designed to be the primary way to activate those types of keys.

     The description of the RIT and ROT activations is  how an OEM_COA key is designed to Activate (as I understand it).

      -If the key is being activated for the first time or any any time on a PC with a significantly different Hardware ID then the previous activation, the Activation by Phone is required.

      -If the key is being activated on a PC with the same Hardware ID as the last time the key was activated, the Activation may occur over the internet.

     The rule of thumb for OEM_COA keys is: Activation over the Internet is the exception, not the rule. They are always allowed to Activate by Phone but only allow Activation over the Internet in specific situations.

     

       If the Activation behavior of your OEM_COA keys are not following the rules that I have described above, then either I am mistaken, the rules have changed (which is possible, I'm in the WGA group, not the Product Key group and new information may not have filtered down to me) or there is an issue with the Windows install the OEM_COA key is being used in. What that issue might be, I can't tell from the information provided and I would recommend contacting assisted support at http://support.microsoft.com

      Additional information on how Activation works can be found at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/302806 and any additional Activation related questions can be directed to the  'Install, Upgrade and Activate' section of the Windows 7 Answers forum at http://social.answers.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/category/windows7

    Thank you,

     


    Darin MS
    • Marked as answer by Darin Smith MS Thursday, November 18, 2010 8:38 PM
    Thursday, November 18, 2010 8:38 PM

All replies

  • "We enter in the one from the bottom of the netbook"

    That is your problem, the OEM_COA keys require telephone activation. This is to protect against the keys being stolen as was common with OEM computers when XP first came out.

    Thanks

    Carl

    • Marked as answer by Darin Smith MS Tuesday, November 9, 2010 8:41 PM
    • Unmarked as answer by Greywar777 Thursday, November 11, 2010 10:55 PM
    • Marked as answer by Darin Smith MS Friday, November 12, 2010 7:59 PM
    • Unmarked as answer by Greywar777 Saturday, November 13, 2010 12:10 AM
    • Marked as answer by Darin Smith MS Thursday, November 18, 2010 8:38 PM
    Tuesday, November 9, 2010 2:31 AM
  • unfortunately that is not in fact true.  That was the original answer I gave to our build team, however as they point out-if they simply re-enter the COA code from the bottom using the "enter a new code" it accepts it, and activates over the internet just fine. 
    Thursday, November 11, 2010 10:55 PM
  • "Greywar777" wrote in message news:c231f9ec-caa6-46c9-9b0e-c1bda7cd614a...
    unfortunately that is not in fact true.  That was the original answer I gave to our build team, however as they point out-if they simply re-enter the COA code from the bottom using the "enter a new code" it accepts it, and activates over the internet just fine. 

    If the machine has already been activated using that Key, then I think that it will re-activate over the internet - It's only the first one that needs to be done over the phone. (But I could well be wrong, as I've never tried it)

    --


    Noel Paton | Nil Carborundum Illegitemi | CrashFixPC | The Three-toed Sloth
    Friday, November 12, 2010 8:06 AM
    Moderator
  • Noel is correct.  There are two types of re-activations, a RIT and a ROT.  'Reactivation In Tolerance' and 'Reactivation Out of Tolerance'.

     

    1) Reactivation In Tolerance is a Reactivation on the same computer with the same (or very similar) Hardware ID as the Hardware ID that was recorded during the previous Activation.

    (the Hardware ID is the combination of all the hardware IDs for all hardware in the computer.  If hardware is added, removed or changed, the computer's Hardware ID changes)

    This type or Reactivation can be done over the Internet.

     

    2) Reactivation Out of Tolerance is a Reactivation on a new computer or on the same computer that has a significantly different Hardware ID.  Meaning a significant amount of hardware was added, removed and/or changed since the that last activation.

    My understanding is that for OEM keys, the first activation with the Key is seen as a ROT.

    This type of Reactivation must be done by Phone.

     

    I have re-marked Carl's post as the Answer to this thread.

     

    Thank you,

     


    Darin MS
    Friday, November 12, 2010 7:56 PM
  • I suspect I am not communicating this properly.  For that I wish to apologize, and thank those who have responded to this for thier time and effort. 

    If according to whats said above this is a OEM_COA key it should never auto-activate over the phone.  So lets make 100% clear that what I am calling a OEM_COA is in fact one.  When I refer to the OEM_COA it is this:

    on the bottom of the OEM netbook there is a product key.  this is the OEM Certificate of authority key-aka the OEM_COA.

    When we image the system, we enter this in.  It is accepted, but when the device reboots it says it is not activated-and in fact that the code entered was invalid.  If we click on that , and select to enter in a new product key to activate, and re-enter the OEM_COA it accepts it and activates over the internet.  Why didnt it do this the first time?

    If we accept Carls post is the answer then what I have just described is in fact impossible.....and something else must be happening.  This concerns me a great deal, I truly do not want to find out 3 months from now that all of our machines suddenly stop working since we did something wrong. 

    I can clearly say 100% that the OEM_COA is being auto-activated when re-entered.  what im trying to discover is why it fails to auto-activate the first time. 

    The current lead im following is that the PXE build server is missing the autoactivate section (which unfortunately I cannot test right now as I dont have access to the room our test server is in at the moment) 

    PS-Thank you for the information about the RIT and ROT. 

    • Edited by Greywar777 Saturday, November 13, 2010 12:11 AM added details about the code being invalid when entered
    Saturday, November 13, 2010 12:10 AM
  • "I can clearly say 100% that the OEM_COA is being auto-activated when re-entered.  what im trying to discover is why it fails to auto-activate the first time. "

    It fails the first time by design. If it works on subsequent attempts that would indicate a bug. I can say with 100 percent confidence that you will not be able to deploy and autoactivate a COA_SLP key automaticly, however I am surprised to hear that it would work on subsequent attempts. I would be curious if this could be duplicated by performing a standard installation.

    What I suggest you do, is on one of the computers that failed to activate, then activated on the following attempt is that you generate a report using the diagnostic tool found in the sticky below. After posting the report we may be able to tell you more. Just jump to the bottom of the sticky and you will see the link and instructions for posting a diag.

    http://social.microsoft.com/Forums/en/genuinewindows7/thread/12e55dd0-545f-492e-934c-fb73da8eaf02

    Saturday, November 13, 2010 4:09 PM
  • Hi Greywar777,

    This forum is for support of Validation (Non-Genuine) issues. Your Validation issue was resolved by Activating.  Carl posted that the resolution to Activation related Validation issue (where an OEM_COA key is involved) was to Activate by Phone because that is designed to be the primary way to activate those types of keys.

     The description of the RIT and ROT activations is  how an OEM_COA key is designed to Activate (as I understand it).

      -If the key is being activated for the first time or any any time on a PC with a significantly different Hardware ID then the previous activation, the Activation by Phone is required.

      -If the key is being activated on a PC with the same Hardware ID as the last time the key was activated, the Activation may occur over the internet.

     The rule of thumb for OEM_COA keys is: Activation over the Internet is the exception, not the rule. They are always allowed to Activate by Phone but only allow Activation over the Internet in specific situations.

     

       If the Activation behavior of your OEM_COA keys are not following the rules that I have described above, then either I am mistaken, the rules have changed (which is possible, I'm in the WGA group, not the Product Key group and new information may not have filtered down to me) or there is an issue with the Windows install the OEM_COA key is being used in. What that issue might be, I can't tell from the information provided and I would recommend contacting assisted support at http://support.microsoft.com

      Additional information on how Activation works can be found at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/302806 and any additional Activation related questions can be directed to the  'Install, Upgrade and Activate' section of the Windows 7 Answers forum at http://social.answers.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/category/windows7

    Thank you,

     


    Darin MS
    • Marked as answer by Darin Smith MS Thursday, November 18, 2010 8:38 PM
    Thursday, November 18, 2010 8:38 PM
  • Hello Greywar777,

    Deployment of OEM installations of Windows is supported by Microsoft ONLY with the use of the OEM Preinstallation Kit.  I think the answer to your question is going to be found in either the Windows 7 technet forum on deployment or more likely the OEM systembuilder forum for the Windows 7 OPK.

    Friday, November 19, 2010 1:37 AM
  • For anyone whom finds this discussion via search, the solution for us appears to be in the answer file, autoactivate command.  I believe we simply added AUTOACTIVATE=TRUE to the answer file, and resolved the issue.

    Theres a lot of great information provided here, and my thanks to those who atempted to help.  Some responses for people above:

    "Carl Stephens-I can say with 100 percent confidence that you will not be able to deploy and autoactivate a COA_SLP key automaticly, however I am surprised to hear that it would work on subsequent attempts"

    I can say with 100% that we just deployed and autoactivated a COA_SLP key automatically without having to make any second attempts.  In point of fact we have done it over 100 times now.  I think this is because of.....

    "Darin Smith-If the key is being activated for the first time or any any time on a PC with a significantly different Hardware ID then the previous activation, the Activation by Phone is required.

      -If the key is being activated on a PC with the same Hardware ID as the last time the key was activated, the Activation may occur over the internet."

    Bingo, same hardware ID. 

     

    Again, Thanks for the help everyone!

    Monday, December 6, 2010 7:23 PM