Learn how to troubleshoot activation error codes

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Resolve Windows Activation Error Codes

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Try our virtual agent: it may help you Quickly identify and resolve common KMS and MAK activation issues

Notes

This article is intended for IT professionals and support agents. If you’re looking for more information about Windows activation error messages, see Getting help with Windows activation errors.

This article provides troubleshooting information to help you resolve error messages you may receive when trying to use a Multiple Activation Key (MAK) or Key Management Service (KMS) for perform volume activation on one or more Windows computers. Find the error code in the following table, then select the link to view more information about this error code and how to resolve it.

For more information on Volume Activation, see Planning for Volume Activation.

For more information on volume activation for current and recent versions of Windows, see Volume Activation [customer].

For more information on volume activation for earlier versions of Windows, see Knowledge Base article 929712, Volume Activation Information for Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows 7.

Diagnostic tool

Notes

This tool is designed to troubleshoot Windows activation issues on computers that are running the Enterprise, Professional, or Server edition of Windows.

The Microsoft Support and Recovery Assistant simplifies troubleshooting Windows KMS service-based activation issues. Download the diagnostic tool here.

This tool attempts to activate Windows. If it returns an activation error code, the tool displays targeted solutions for known error codes.

The following error codes are supported: 0xC004F038, 0xC004F039, 0xC004F041, 0xC004F074, 0xC004C008, 0x8007007b, 0xC004C003, 0x8007232B.

Summary of error codes

Error code
Error message
Activation type

0x8004FE21
This computer is not running genuine Windows.
MAK Key
KMS Client

0x80070005
Access denied. The requested action requires higher privileges.
MAK Key
KMS Client
KMS Host

0x8007007b
0x8007007b The DNS name does not exist.
KMS customer

0x80070490
The product key you entered did not work. Check the product key or enter a different one.
MAK key

0x800706BA
The RPC server is unavailable.
KMS customer

0x8007232A
DNS server failure.
KMS host

0x8007232B
The DNS name does not exist.
KMS customer

0x8007251D
No record found for DNS query.
KMS customer

0x80092328
The DNS name does not exist.
KMS customer

0xC004B100
The activation server determined that the computer could not be activated.
MAK key

0xC004C001
The activation server has determined that the specified product key is invalid
MAK key

0xC004C003
The activation server has determined that the specified product key is blocked
MAK key

0xC004C008
The activation server determined that the specified product key could not be used.
KMS

0xC004C020
The activation server reported that the multiple activation key limit has been exceeded.
MAK key

0xC004C021
The activation server reported that the limit of the multiple activation key extension has been exceeded.
MAK key

0xC004F009
The Licensing Service reported that the grace period has expired.
MAK key

0xC004F00F
The Software Licensing Server reported that the hardware ID binding is beyond the tolerance level.
MAK Key
KMS Client
KMS Host

0xC004F014
The Licensing Service reported that the product key is not available
MAK Key
KMS Client

0xC004F02C
The Licensing Service reported that offline activation data is incorrect.
MAK Key
KMS Client

0xC004F035
The Software Protection Service reported that the computer could not be activated with a volume license product key.
KMS Client
KMS Host

0xC004F038
The Licensing Service reported that the computer could not be activated. The account reported by your Key Management Service (KMS) is insufficient. Contact your system administrator.
KMS customer

0xC004F039
The Licensing Service reported that the computer could not be activated. The Key Management Service (KMS) is not enabled.
KMS customer

0xC004F041
The software protection service has determined that the KMS service is not enabled. KMS must be enabled.
KMS customer

0xC004F042
The Licensing Service has determined that the Key Management Service (KMS) cannot be used.
KMS customer

0xC004F050
The Licensing Service reported that the product key is invalid.
MAK Key
KMS
KMS Client

0xC004F051
The Licensing Service reported that the product key is blocked.
MAK Key
KMS

0xC004F064
The software protection service reported that the unauthentic grace period has expired.
MAK key

0xC004F065
The software protection service reported that the application is running during the valid inauthentic period.
MAK Key
KMS Client

0xC004F06C
The Licensing Service reported that the computer could not be activated. The Key Management Service (KMS) has determined that the request timestamp is invalid.
KMS customer

0xC004F074
The Licensing Service reported that the computer could not be activated. No Key Manager (KMS) could be contacted. For more information, see the Application Event Log.
KMS customer

Causes and solutions

0x8004FE21 This computer is not running a genuine version of Windows

Possible cause

This problem can occur for several reasons. The most likely reason is that the language packs were installed on computers that are running editions of Windows that are not licensed for additional language packs.

Notes

This issue is not necessarily an indication of tampering. Some applications may install multilingual support even when that edition of Windows is not licensed for those language packs.)

This issue can also occur if Windows has been modified by malware to allow additional features to be installed. This problem can also occur if some system files are damaged.

Solution

To solve this problem, you must reinstall the operating system.

0x80070005 Access Denied

The full text of this error message looks like this:

Access denied. The requested action requires higher privileges.

Possible cause

User Account Control (UAC) prohibits activation processes from running in a non-escalated Command Prompt window.

Solution

Run the command slmgr.vbs from an elevated command prompt. To do this, in the Start menu, right-click cmd.exe, and then click Run as administrator.

0x8007007b DNS name does not exist

Possible cause

This issue can occur if the KMS client cannot find the KMS SRV resource records in DNS.

Solution

For more information on troubleshooting these DNS-related issues, see Common Troubleshooting Procedures for KMS and DNS Issues.

0x80070490 The product key you entered did not work

The full text of this error looks like this:

The product key you entered did not work. Check the product key or enter a different one.

Possible cause

This issue occurs because the key that was entered was invalid, or due to a known issue in Windows Server 2019.

Solution

To work around this issue and activate the computer, run slmgr -ipk <5×5 key> from an elevated command prompt.

0x800706BA The RPC server is unavailable

Possible cause

Firewall settings are not configured on the KMS host or DNS SRV records are outdated.

Solution

On the KMS host, verify that the firewall exception is enabled on the Key Management Service (TCP port 1688).

Verify that DNS SRV records point to a valid KMS host.

Troubleshoot network connections.

For more information on troubleshooting these DNS-related issues, see Common Troubleshooting Procedures for KMS and DNS Issues.

0x8007232A DNS server failure

Possible cause

The system is experiencing network or DNS problems.

Solution

Resolve network and DNS issues.

0x8007232B DNS name does not exist

Possible cause

KMS client cannot find server resource records (RR SRV) in DNS.

Solution

Verify that a KMS host has been installed and DNS publishing is enabled (default). If DNS is not available, point the KMS client to the KMS host using slmgr.vbs /skms <kms_host_name>.

If you don’t have a KMS host, obtain and install a MAK key. Then activate the system.

For more information on troubleshooting these DNS-related issues, see Common Troubleshooting Procedures for KMS and DNS Issues.

0x8007251D No records found for DNS query

Possible cause

KMS client cannot find KMS SRV records in DNS.

Solution

Troubleshoot network and DNS connections. For more information on how to resolve these DNS-related issues, see Common Troubleshooting Procedures for KMS and DNS Issues.

0x80092328 DNS name does not exist

Possible cause

This issue can occur if the KMS client cannot find the KMS SRV resource records in DNS.

Solution

For more information on troubleshooting these DNS-related issues, see Common Troubleshooting Procedures for KMS and DNS Issues.

0xC004B100 The activation server determined that the computer could not be activated< /h3>

Possible cause

The MAK key is not supported.

Solution

To resolve this problem, verify that the MAK key you are using is the one provided by Microsoft. To verify that the MAK key is valid, contact the Microsoft Licensing Activation Centers.

0xC004C001 The activation server determined that the specified product key is invalid

Possible cause

The MAK key you entered is invalid.

Solution

Verify that the key is the MAK key provided by Microsoft. For further assistance, contact theMicrosoft Licensing Activation Centers.

0xC004C003 The activation server determined that the specified product key is blocked

Possible cause

The MAK key is blocked on the activation server.

Solution

To obtain a new MAK key, contact the Microsoft License Activation Centers. Once you get the new MAK key, try installing and activating Windows again.

0xC004C008 The activation server determined that the specified product key is not could not be used

Possible cause

The KMS key activation limitation has been exceeded. A KMS host key can be activated up to 10 times on six different computers.

Solution

If you need additional activations, contact the Microsoft Licensing Activation Centers.

0xC004C020 The activation server reported that the key limit multiple activation has been exceeded

Possible cause

The MAK key activation limitation has been exceeded. By default, MAK keys can be activated a limited number of times.

Solution

If you need additional activations, contact the Microsoft Licensing Activation Centers.

0xC004C021 The activation server reported that the limit of the multiple activation key extension has been exceeded

Possible cause

The MAK key activation limitation has been exceeded. By default, MAK keys can only be activated a limited number of times.

Solution

If you need additional activations, contact the Microsoft Licensing Activation Centers.

0xC004F009 The software protection service reported that the grace period has expired

Possible cause

The grace period expired before the system was activated. The system is in the Notifications state.

Solution

For assistance, contact the Microsoft Licensing Activation Centers.

0xC004F00F The software licensing server reported that the hardware id binding is beyond tolerance level

Possible cause

Hardware has changed or drivers have been updated on the system.

Solution

If you are using Multiple Activation Key (MAK)-based activation, use online or phone activation to reactivate the system during the out-of-tolerance grace period.

If using KMS activation, restart Windows or run slmgr.vbs /ato.

0xC004F014 The software protection service reported that the product key is not available

Possible cause

No product key is installed on the system.

Solution

If you are using Multiple Activation Key (MAK) based activation, install a MAK product key.

If you are using KMS activation, check the Pid.txt file (located on the installation media in the \sources folder) for a KMS installation key. Install the key.

0xC004F02C The software protection service reported that the data for ‘offline activation are incorrect

Possible cause

The system has detected that the data entered during a telephone activation is not correct.

Solution

Check that the CID is entered correctly.

0xC004F035 Invalid volume license key

The full text of this error message looks like this:

Error: Invalid volume license key. To activate, you need to replace your product key with a multiple activation key (MAK) or a retail key. You must have a qualifying operating system license AND a volume license for Windows 7 upgrade purposes, or a full license for Windows 7 from a commercial source. ANY OTHER INSTALLATION OF THIS SOFTWARE IS IN VIOLATION OF YOUR AGREEMENT AND OF APPLICABLE COPYRIGHT LAW.

The error text is correct, but ambiguous. This error indicates that the computer’s BIOS does not contain a Windows marker that identifies it as an OEM system running an eligible version of Windows. This information is required for KMS client activation. The more specific meaning of this code is “Error: Invalid Volume License Key”

Possible cause

Windows 7 Volume License editions are licensed for upgrade purposes only. Microsoft does not support installing a volume operating system on a computer that does not have a qualifying operating system installed.

Solution

To be able to activate, you must do one of the following:

  • Replace your product key with a multiple activation key (MAK) or retail product key. You must have a qualifying operating system license AND a volume license for Windows 7 upgrade purposes, or a full license for Windows 7 from a commercial source.

    Notes

    If you receive error 0x80072ee2 when trying to activate, use the phone activation method below instead.

  • Activate by phone by following these steps:
    1. Run slmgr /dti and save the install ID value.
  • Contact the Microsoft License Activation Centers and provide the Installation ID to receive a confirmation ID.
  • To activate with Confirmation ID, run slmgr /atp <Confirmation ID> .

0xC004F038 The count reported by your key management service (KMS) is insufficient

The full text of this error message looks like this:

The Licensing Service reported that the computer could not be activated. The account reported by your Key Management Service (KMS) is insufficient. Contact your system administrator.

Possible cause

The number reported by the KMS host is not high enough. For Windows Server, the number of KMS must be greater than or equal to 5. For Windows (client), the number of KMS must be greater than or equal to 25.

Solution

Before you can use KMS to activate Windows, you must have more computers in the KMS pool. To get the current count on the KMS host, run Slmgr.vbs /dli.

0xC004F039 The key management service (KMS) is not enabled

The full text of this error message looks like this:

The Licensing Service reported that the computer could not be activated. Key Management Service (KMS) is not enabled.

Possible cause

The Key Management Service (KMS) did not respond to the KMS request.

Solution

Resolve connection issues between KMS host and client. Verify that TCP port 1688 (default) is not blocked by a firewall or filtered by another device.

0xC004F041 The software protection service has determined that the KMS service is not activated

The full text of this error message looks like this:

The software protection service has determined that the KMS service is not enabled. KMS must be enabled.

Possible cause

KMS host is not enabled.

Solution

Activate the KMS host through online or phone activation.

0xC004F042 The software protection service has determined that the key management (KMS) cannot be used

Possible cause

This error occurs when a KMS client contacts a KMS host that was unable to activate the client software. This can happen in mixed environments that contain application and operating system specific KMS hosts, for example.

Solution

Make sure that if you use specific KMS hosts to activate specific applications or operating systems, KMS clients connect to the correct host computers.

0xC004F050 The software protection service reported that the product key is invalid

Possible cause

This may be due to an error in entering the KMS key or using a beta key with a release version of the operating system.

Solution

Install the KMS key that matches the version of Windows. Check the entry. If the key is copied/pasted, check that the em-dashes (|) have not been replaced by hyphens in the key.

0xC004F051 The software protection service reported that the product key is blocked

Possible cause

The activation server has determined that Microsoft has blocked the product key.

Solution

Get a new MAK or KMS key, install it on the system and activate it.

0xC004F064 zThe software protection service reported that the non-genuine-grace-period has expired< /h3>

Possible cause

Windows Activation Tools (WAT) has determined that the system is not genuine.

Solution

For assistance, contact the Microsoft Licensing Activation Centers.

0xC004F065The software protection service reported that the application is running during valid inauthentic period

Possible cause

Windows activation tools have determined that the system is not genuine. The system will continue to run during the non-authentic grace period.

Solution

Obtain and install a genuine product key and activate the system during the grace period. Otherwise, the system will enter the Notifications state when the grace period ends.

The full text of this error message looks like this:

The Licensing Service reported that the computer could not be activated. The Key Management Service (KMS) has determined that the request timestamp is invalid.

Possible cause

The system time on the client computer is different from the time on the KMS host. Time synchronization is important for system and network security for several reasons.

Solution

Fix this issue by changing the system time on the client to be in sync with the time on the KMS host. We recommend using NTP or Active Directory Domain Services time source for time synchronization. This error uses UTP time and does not depend on the selection of a time zone.

The full text of this error message looks like this:

The Licensing Service reported that the computer could not be activated. No Key Manager (KMS) could be contacted. For more information, see the application event log.

Possible cause

All KMS host systems returned an error.

Solution

In the application event log, identify each event with Event ID 12288 associated with the activation attempt. Resolve errors from these events.

For more information on troubleshooting DNS issues, see Common Troubleshooting Procedures for KMS and DNS Issues.


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