We couldn't verify the product key. Please check your installation media. (Hyper-V Virtual Machine) RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi there, 

    I have been banging my head on an issue for the last couple of hours hoping someone can point me in the right direction. I have a Windows Server Standard 2012 R2 Media that we purchased from an online vendor. The software came with a single product key and as I understand Windows Server 2012 Standard R2 includes 2 Virtual Machine installations. When I installed the media on the physical server I was able to activate Windows without any problems at all. I installed the Hyper-V role on the same host server and when I tried to perform a virtualized installation of Windows Server 2012 Standard r2 on the machine I received the error "We couldn't verify the product key. Please check your installation media." 

    I do not have any other keys other than what came with the package. As I understand I should be able to use the same Product Key included within the Virtual Machines if they are the same OS. If any one can provide any tips or experience, I appreciate the assistance greatly. 

    Monday, August 18, 2014 8:53 PM

All replies

  • try the AVMA key DBGBW-NPF86-BJVTX-K3WKJ-MTB6V


    Sam Boutros, Senior Consultant, Software Logic, KOP, PA http://superwidgets.wordpress.com (Please take a moment to Vote as Helpful and/or Mark as Answer, where applicable)

    Monday, August 18, 2014 9:52 PM
  • Hi Anthony,


    System Requirements

    AVMA only requires a virtualization server running Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter. The guest virtual machine operating system must be Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter, Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard, or Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials.


    Based on my understanding AVMA applies to server 2012R2 datacenter hyper-v host .

    I would suggest you to contact Microsoft Activation Center for the accurate assistance :


    Best Regards

    Elton Ji

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    Tuesday, August 19, 2014 9:34 AM
  • Maybe a dumb question but does the VM have internet Access?

    Have you used the key elsewhere or multiple times already on the same machine?

    Tuesday, August 19, 2014 11:55 AM
  • When are you getting the message? Right after you key in the license during installation or after it starts up and tries to activate?

    If it's the former, then all it's doing at that point is checking that the format of the key is correct. If you've double- and triple-checked that you've entered it correctly, then go with Sam Boutros's suggestion. It's true that a VM with an AVMA key won't activate unless its host is running Datacenter as the management operating system, but it fits the expected format during installation so it will get you past that point. You'll have to change the key after Windows starts, though.

    If it's the latter, you may need to call in to the licensing center. The activation wizard should guide you to the numbers to call.

    Eric Siron Altaro Hyper-V Blog
    I am an independent blog contributor, not an Altaro employee. I am solely responsible for the content of my posts.
    "Every relationship you have is in worse shape than you think."

    Tuesday, August 19, 2014 1:21 PM
  • I agree with Darren. Your Hyper-V guest needs connection to the internet to verify the (MAK) key. Please check that your machine is connected to a External virtual switch.
    Tuesday, August 19, 2014 1:55 PM
  • I've had this and it drove me insane. The Startup RAM of the VMs was 512 MB. The problem was resolved when I increased it to 1024 MB.
    • Proposed as answer by RI Connect-User Wednesday, September 3, 2014 1:39 PM
    Wednesday, August 20, 2014 11:20 AM
  • Not quite sure how this works with online vendors, but with Full Package and OEM licenses you'll actually get 2 license keys, one for the physical install and a second one for any virtual installs.

    What the other guys said still holds true btw, at least about the internet connection for verification.

    Kind regards, Philipp - Solid IT Solutions

    Wednesday, August 20, 2014 8:13 PM
  • You wouldn't believe it ... but increasing the memory to 1024 MB solved this issue!


    Saturday, November 1, 2014 9:43 PM
  • Just wanted to say thanks for this tip about increasing memory. It just saved me from a long and frustrating time. :-)
    Friday, September 25, 2015 10:10 PM
  • Late to the party, but having this same issue Server 2012 DataCenter. If I enter the wrong key, it seems to know this. Enter the correct key and this shit happens.

    The server is NOT connected to the internet yet because the OS isn't even installed yet, so how could it possibly be on the frigging internet. It is still at STEP 1 Collecting information. For christ sakes man.

    I have 16Gb ram, so not a memory issue. This is a physical server, not a VM.

    Now what?? Cannot install this "EXPENSIVE" server software. 

    I am all ears MS, so please help.

    Thursday, December 3, 2015 7:21 PM
  • "If I enter the wrong key, it seems to know this."

    Yep, keys have a specific format with a checksum (I believe) and certain keys are valid with certain installs.  So it is easy for the installation procedure to check for a valid key locally.  Still needs to contact Microsoft for valid retail keys in order to activate.  So you might not know if you have an expired key or something like that until you connect to the internet.

    "Enter the correct key and this shit happens."

    'Colorful' description, but not very helpful to those who might want to try to assist you.  Please provide information on what you have done and what error message(s) you are receiving, and what you have done so far to remediate.

    "I am all ears MS, so please help."

    This is a volunteer technical forum, not a Microsoft support forum.  Most people are most likely in positions similar to yours.  That is, they are system administrators, but they have an interest in volunteering their time to assist people try to get issues resolved.  The problem you are experiencing does not appear to be related to Hyper-V.  It appears to be a general activation issue (as best I can guess).  For activation issues, it is best to contact Microsoft directly.  You can find local telephone numbers on the activation page on the operating system.  Or, if you are a volume licensing customer, you can find activation support for volume licenses at www.microsoft.com/licensing.

    . : | : . : | : . tim

    Thursday, December 3, 2015 9:26 PM
  • Thanks for your answer! Also disable dynamic RAM.
    Saturday, January 2, 2016 6:20 PM
  • I've had this and it drove me insane. The Startup RAM of the VMs was 512 MB. The problem was resolved when I increased it to 1024 MB.

    Worked for me as well, thanks a lot.

    I used a very recent server 2012R2 installation iso, so the problem is still there.

    Sunday, January 3, 2016 5:06 PM
  • Lifesaver, thank you Tim861, worked a treat.
    • Edited by Dev Nayee Wednesday, April 20, 2016 8:46 AM edit
    Wednesday, April 20, 2016 8:45 AM
  • Thank you - this worked for me.  How strange ...
    Wednesday, June 20, 2018 3:43 PM