Applies to:  

Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2

Introduction

If you ever come across Windows activation error on servers such as This copy of Windows is not genuine (if you have KMS in place for license activation), please follow the steps given below to activate the OS again.

Steps

1. Telnet to KMS

Use 'telnet' to check the port connectivity from source machine to Destination KMS server

E.G.

telnet  Destination_KMS_Server_Hostname 1688
(port 1688 is default KMS port)

OR

telnet  Destination_KMS_Server_IPAddress  1688

If you get blank screen on cmd, that confirms that KMS server is reachable

2. KMS Troubleshooting

If you cannot see the blank screen, i.e. KMS (Destination KMS server) is not reachable from source  machine.

Add local host entry for Destination_KMS_Server_IPAddress on source machine

E.G . 10.20.30.40 Destination_KMS_Server_Hostname 

P.S. 10.20.30.40 is KMS server IP Adsress 

 

3. Firewall

Get the network port opened consulting your firewall team

E.G.

Source:  Source Machine IP Address
Target:  Destination_KMS_Server_IPAddress (10.20.30.40)
Port: 1688
Bi-directional acess: Yes

4. Permissions (cmd)

Open up elevated cmd  ( run as admin ) and enter following  commands sequentially:

In the case where the KMSClient OS is Windows Server 2008 R2

icacls %windir%\ServiceProfiles\NetworkService\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\SoftwareProtectionPlatform /grant "BUILTIN\Administrators:(OI)(CI)(F)" "NT AUTHORITY\SYSTEM:(OI)(CI)(F)" "NT Service\sppsvc:(OI)(CI)(R,W,D)" "NETWORK SERVICE:(OI)(CI)(F)"
net stop sppsvc && net start sppsvc

In the case where the KMSClient OS is Windows Server 2008 (Non R2)

 icacls %windir%\serviceprofiles\networkservice\appdata\roaming\microsoft\softwarelicensing /grant "BUILTIN\Administrators:(OI)(CI)(F)" "NT AUTHORITY\SYSTEM:(OI)(CI)(F)" "NT Service\slsvc:(OI)(CI)(R,W,D)"

b.   net stop slsvc && net start slsvc

5. SLMGR

Now run the following commands (run as admin)

cscript slmgr.vbs /SKMS Destination_KMS_Server_Hostname
You should see following message
Microsoft (R) Windows Script Host Version 5.8
Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.
Key Management Service machine name set to Destination_KMS_Server_Hostname successfully.

 

cscript slmgr.vbs /ato
Microsoft (R) Windows Script Host Version 5.8
Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.
Activating Windows Server(R), ServerEnterprise edition (620e2b3d-09e7-42fd-802a-
17a13652fe7a) ...
Product activated successfully