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Today, Kim Griffiths shares:
One of the more common questions that we are hearing about volume activation today is around how to update your existing Key Management Service (KMS) to support Windows 7 and/or Windows Server 2008 R2. This is also causing some customers issues as they attempt to use the new keys that are available on the Volume License Service Center and get a 0xC004f050 or 0xC004F015 errors, as shown here:
Why is this happening, and how can it be resolved?
With each release of Windows, Microsoft will issue new product keys. This is true for volume license customers as well. In order for this key to be recognized on an earlier release of Windows, it is necessary to update the license files that are used by the software license service. This is easy to do and only takes a little time to accomplish.
KMS hosted on Windows Server 2003
If you are hosting the KMS on Windows Server 2003 today, you are probably running the version 1.1 that supports both Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 KMS keys and clients. In order to add support for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2, you’ll need to install the update found in KB 968195. The steps to install are clearly defined in the KB. Don’t forget to restart the service after the update is installed. This is a very important step because the license files won’t be installed until after the reboot. Read Updating KMS on Windows Server 2003 to support Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 for additional information.
After the update is installed (and the system is restarted), you can install the new KMS host key (for Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2) using slmgr.vbs /ipk, and then activate the service using slmgr.vbs /ato. The DNS records will be refreshed and the count on the KMS host is maintained. The entire process is transparent to the KMS client systems.
KMS hosted on Windows Server 2008 (and Windows Vista)
A similar update exists for Windows Server 2008. KB 968912 has the update and clearly defined steps to follow to update the KMS host. After the update is installed (and the system is restarted), you can install the new KMS host key (for Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2) using slmgr.vbs /ipk, and then activate the service using slmgr.vbs /ato. The DNS records will be refreshed and the count is maintained.
Keep in mind that the most common issue that customers are having while resolving the above is that they do not restart the system before attempting to install the new KMS host key. Without the restart, the new key will not be recognized and you will get the same error I mentioned at the beginning of the blog (0xC004F015).