How to change the Volume Licensing product key on a Windows XP-based or a Windows Server 2003-based computer

How to change the Volume Licensing product key on a Windows XP-based or a Windows Server 2003-based computer

Note We recommend that you run System Restore on Windows XP to create a new restore point before you follow these steps. For information about how to create a restore point by using System Restore, see the “To Create a Restore Point” help topic in Help and Support.

  1. Click Start, click Run, type regedit, and then click OK.
  2. In the left pane, locate and then click the following registry subkey:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\WindowsNT\Current Version\WPAEvents
  3. In the right pane, right-click OOBETimer, and then click Modify.
  4. Change at least one digit of the OOBETimer value to deactivate Windows.
  5. Click Start, click Run, type the following command, and then click OK:
    %systemroot%\system32\oobe\msoobe.exe /a
  6. Click Yes, I want to telephone a customer service representative to activate Windows, and then click Next.
  7. Click Change Product key, type the new product key in the New key boxes, and then click Update

    Note If the previous Activation Wizard screen appears again, click Remind me later, and then restart the computer.

  8. Repeat steps 6 and 7 to verify that Windows is started. Click OK when you receive the following message:
    Windows is already activated. Click OK to exit.
  9. Install any Windows service packs that you want to install. 

    Note If you cannot restart Windows after you install a service pack, press F8 when you restart the computer, click Last Known Good Configuration, and then repeat this procedure

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About Hany Abd El-Wahab

Hany has 9+ years of experience as IT Solution Architect, Consultation and Training. through a broad range of vendors and technologies (Microsoft, VMware, EMC, Symantec and more). Also certified (Microsoft x4 MCSE, 2x MCITP, 15x MCTS), (VMware VCP-DCV, x2 VCP, 3x VCA, VCSTP), (EMC ISM, VNX-IE), DELL(DCSE-E, S) and more...
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