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08-28-2018

CA

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T450 Windows 10 Pro Activation Failed

2019-07-08, 16:45 PM

I have T450 came with Windows 7 pro downgraded from Window 10 pro about 4 years before, and I cannot use either Win 10 or Win 7 with this machine anymore after formatting HDD.

 

It was being used with factory installed Win 7pro for a while, then due to the virus related issue, I low level formatted the HDD this year. Since then I was trying to use the facory recovery USB key that came from Lenovo, but the recovery key from Lenovo was actually Win 10 pro instead of Win 7 pro; which was fine if I could activate the Win 10 licese properly. 

 

After Win10 factory recovery was done with the USB key, the activation window says that "The product key used on this PC didn't work with this edition of Windows. You might need to get in touch with the store or company you bought Windows from, enter a different product key, or go to the Store to buy genuine Windows. Error code: 0xC004C060". I contacted Microsoft, and they traced the license key in the BIOS of the laptop, then told me that "The product key in your machine exceeded the maximum quantity of PC for activation. Please contact Lenovo to get proper license key."

 

I contacted Lenovo support, but I could not get any help from the support except telling me that my laptop is now out of warranty.

 

What should I do here? Should I purchase a new Win 10 licese again?

 

Please help.

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3627 Posts

12-11-2015

US

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Re: T450 Windows 10 Pro Activation Failed

2019-07-09, 0:35 AM

If you system had the downgrade option, they your Windows 10 product key should be stored in the BIOS, and it could not have been used by any other system regardless of what Microsoft support told you.

 

To find the key, download the Nirsoft's Product key tool (it is free) and use it to locate they key stored in the BIOS of your system.    That key should be installed automatically upon installing Windows 10.      Here is a link to the 64-bit version in a .zip file that does not require installation, just download the file, unzip the file, and then run ProduKey.exe

 

Assuming that the tool finds a Windows (BIOS OEM key)  stored in your system's BIOS, then that is your laptop's unique Windows 10 product key, and that key could not have been used by others. 

 

If the "Windows (BIOS OEM key)" was located by the tool, then download the Windows 10 installation media for free from Microsoft here https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10 and use it to create a DVD (or use a 8GB or greater USB flash drive) with the installer for the latest Windows 10 1903 build (your system is compatible with 1903 per Lenovo).

 

During the installation of Windows 10, when it gets to the screen asking for a product key, skip that using the link in he lower right of the screen, and Windows will install and activate the correct version using the license stored in the BIOS upon completion.

 

Below are some detailed instructions on how to do so from Microsoft.

 

How to: Perform a Clean Install or Reinstall of Windows 10

https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/insider/forum/all/how-to-perform-a-clean-install-or-reinstall-of/aef0ae63-2117-41ee-a8ea-4a3181625b08

 

 

Cheers,

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2 Posts

08-28-2018

CA

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Re: T450 Windows 10 Pro Activation Failed

2019-07-09, 19:00 PM

Hi JDGillis,

 

Thank you for your advice. I was able to re-confirm that I have proper product key in the BIOS of my laptop, but I still cannot activate the Windows 10 pro OS wit the key.

 

I was wondering, do you think each Windows 10 product key in Lenovo laptops should not share the same key? If all Windows 10 pro keys for Lenovo laptops are using different keys, that means probably my product key was somehow activated from any other PC?

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