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Activate Windows Server 2016 Std. Desktop with Essential key/license RRS feed

  • Question

  • I've installed Server 2016 standard with desktop experience evaluation for a non-profit organization.

    And now I need to activate it.

    But to my big surprise Microsoft only offer Core and Essentials licenses for non-profits (through TechSoup).

    I do have a license/key for Core 2016 and Essential 2016.

    What is my options?

    I assume I can:

    1. Install a new 2016 Essential server
    2. Join it to the current domain
    3. Take down the 2016 Std. Server Eval.
    4. Change the new Essential Server into a Domain controller

    But that would still take many hours :-(

    Could I turn my current 2016 Std. Eval. into an Essentials server? I see I can add the Essential Server role in the server Manager?

    Or could I convert my current 2016 Std. Eval into a Core?


    Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:11 PM

Answers

  • What happens when you try? Also note it is not supported to convert from evaluation to licensed if the server is already a domain controller.

     excerpt:

    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-server/get-started/supported-upgrade-paths

    If the server is a domain controller, you cannot convert it to a retail version. In this case, install an additional domain controller on a server that runs a retail version and remove AD DS from the domain controller that runs on the evaluation version.

     



    Regards, Dave Patrick ....
    Microsoft Certified Professional
    Microsoft MVP [Windows Server] Datacenter Management

    Disclaimer: This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties or guarantees, and confers no rights.


    • Edited by Dave PatrickMVP Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:42 PM
    • Marked as answer by MrCalvin Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:58 PM
    Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:39 PM

All replies

  • Excerpt from page; 

    https://www.techsoup.org/current-versions-of-microsoft-products

    • Windows Server 2016 Datacenter
    • Windows Server 2016 Essentials
    • Windows Server 2016 Standard

     so you should be fine with what you installed. Just request a key for Server 2016 Standard. You can add the essentials role but the product key for essentials would not work for Server 2016 Standard regardless of roles you add.

     

     



    Regards, Dave Patrick ....
    Microsoft Certified Professional
    Microsoft MVP [Windows Server] Datacenter Management

    Disclaimer: This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties or guarantees, and confers no rights.





    Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:17 PM
  • I do have the "Windows Server 2016 Standard" key....should that work with the Server 2016 Desktop Experience Evaluation I've installed?

    I tried, but it would not take it. 


    Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:34 PM
  • Yes, it would.

     

     



    Regards, Dave Patrick ....
    Microsoft Certified Professional
    Microsoft MVP [Windows Server] Datacenter Management

    Disclaimer: This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties or guarantees, and confers no rights.

    Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:35 PM
  • But on the other hand the activation function is somehow a little unstable. If I push "Change product key" in Settings nothing happens so I tried to do it in the console "slmgr.vbs /ipk <KmsKey>"

    But it would not accept the key

    Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:37 PM
  • What happens when you try? Also note it is not supported to convert from evaluation to licensed if the server is already a domain controller.

     excerpt:

    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-server/get-started/supported-upgrade-paths

    If the server is a domain controller, you cannot convert it to a retail version. In this case, install an additional domain controller on a server that runs a retail version and remove AD DS from the domain controller that runs on the evaluation version.

     



    Regards, Dave Patrick ....
    Microsoft Certified Professional
    Microsoft MVP [Windows Server] Datacenter Management

    Disclaimer: This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties or guarantees, and confers no rights.


    • Edited by Dave PatrickMVP Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:42 PM
    • Marked as answer by MrCalvin Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:58 PM
    Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:39 PM
  • WHAT!!!!!

    I didn't know that...it sure is a domain controller :-P

    What would my options be now?

    Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:41 PM
  • I'd stand up a new one. I'd use dcdiag / repadmin tools to verify health correcting all errors found before starting. Then I'd stand up the new 2016, patch it fully, license it, join existing domain, add active directory domain services, promote it also making it a GC (recommended), transfer FSMO roles over (optional), transfer pdc emulator role (optional), use dcdiag / repadmin tools to verify health, when all is good you can decommission / demote old one.

     

     



    Regards, Dave Patrick ....
    Microsoft Certified Professional
    Microsoft MVP [Windows Server] Datacenter Management

    Disclaimer: This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties or guarantees, and confers no rights.

    Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:43 PM
  • Sorry....just saw your "excerpt:...."

    That's really bad....I have at least a day work in front of me now :-(

    Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:44 PM
  • Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but it really shouldn't take more than an hour to build a new one.

     

     



    Regards, Dave Patrick ....
    Microsoft Certified Professional
    Microsoft MVP [Windows Server] Datacenter Management

    Disclaimer: This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties or guarantees, and confers no rights.


    Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:45 PM
  • I theory.

    But it will get a new name and a lot of things has to be reconfigured.

    And Azure AD sync, roaming profiles etc. etc. will for sure fuck-up. Heck, those things break even if you don't touch them - migrate them to a new server, that's a nightmare I believe (haven't tried though)

    But I guess there are no way around it.....at least I have 50 days, haha.
    God I didn't wait 49 days to find out!

    But thank you for being so helpful and answering quickly :-) :-) :-) :-)


    • Edited by MrCalvin Sunday, October 28, 2018 6:14 PM
    Sunday, October 28, 2018 3:57 PM
  • Evaluation period should be 180 days. From cmd.exe

    slmgr /dli

    to check it.

     

     



    Regards, Dave Patrick ....
    Microsoft Certified Professional
    Microsoft MVP [Windows Server] Datacenter Management

    Disclaimer: This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties or guarantees, and confers no rights.

    Sunday, October 28, 2018 4:08 PM
  • Thanks for your feedback.
    Tuesday, October 30, 2018 8:51 AM