Licensing Questions Thread, Client Refuses to Volume License (KMS) in Technical; We have many Win 7 Enterprise clients. As far as I can tell they are all activating successfully with the ...
4th December 2013, 02:14 PM #1
- Rep Power
Client Refuses to Volume License (KMS)
We have many Win 7 Enterprise clients. As far as I can tell they are all activating successfully with the KMS server. Except one. It refuses. It has been completely rebuilt, including after first being deleted from the AD. And then it does exactly the same thing.
We have VAMT 3. I have updated the view from the database, checked the client installed license has the same last digits as the other similar clients successfully activated, then selected Activate>using volume activation. A box pops up in VAMT to tell me that activation with the KMS Server was successful. On closing the box I see underneath that it still says 'out of box grace' against this client. Am I misunderstanding how 'out of box grace' interacts with KMS activation?
So I then gave up on VAMT with this client. I went onto the KMS server, and at the command line (its Core, so I had to) ran SLMGR.VBS /dlv. I took a Snipping Tool screenshot of the result.
I then went the client and ran SLMGR. It says activation failed. So why did VAMT say it had succeeded? I then went over to the server, and ran SLMGR.VBS /dlv again, to see which line had been incremented.
Results on the server were exactly the same, except:
'Requests with License Status Initial grace period' was incremented by 1.
I don't understand. Why is this even a line in the output? Surely the job of the KMS server is not to say 'yes this client is in the initial grace period'. To me that's pointless. Surely it should either have requests for activation that are denied, or requests that are accepted.
What could be going on with this client?
Do I have a misunderstanding about how KMS licensing works vis-à-vis the Initial Grace Period.
4th December 2013, 02:57 PM #2
I did have an issue similar to this a while ago. It turned out that the PC in question didn't have the Windows marker set in the ACPI_SLIC table in its BIOS. This is something that has to be set by the OEM, it shows the OS that the hardware was provided with a Windows license of some description. In the end, we had to activate it with a MAK key.
4th December 2013, 04:02 PM #3
- Rep Power
Norphy, thank you for your reply. I was not aware of the ACPI_SLIC table until you mentioned, so I did some research.
I found this: You receive an error message when you try to activate Windows Vista or Windows 7 on a computer that was obtained from an OEM
I installed the MGADiag tool on the client, and pasted into notepad as the article says.
The relevant section result was:
OEM Activation 2.0 Data-->
BIOS valid for OA 2.0: no, invalid Windows marker
So there we have a non-starter for KMS. I hope this helps someone else.
4th December 2013, 04:09 PM #4
Is the PC still under warranty? It may be worth trying to get the motherboard replaced under warranty. Admittedly it might be an uphill struggle trying to get them to understand the problem but it's worth a try.
4th December 2013, 04:33 PM #5
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I just rang RM hardware support. To give them credit I went straight through to what sounded like second-line support, and they understood the problem within 20 seconds. It transpired that the machine is quite old (2009), and out of warranty.
They suggested running a BIOS update (even they knew it was a long shot). There is one on their system online. But do you think any ACPI_SLIC related data would be included?
4th December 2013, 04:46 PM #6
I doubt it. That table is data rather than a program so whichever version of the BIOS you change to, the contents will remain the same. At best, you may be able to use a custom BIOS file which changes the flag for you, Intel provide a tool like that for their boards although I don't know if you can set the flag using it.
It may be worth asking RM for the tool that they use to set it?
Anyway, at worst you'll be stuck using a MAK key on that particular PC. As long as you document this, it won't be a huge issue.
Last edited by Norphy; 4th December 2013 at 04:51 PM.
4th December 2013, 05:04 PM #7
- Rep Power
RM Tool: negative. They said we're out of warranty so anything would be chargeable. Not going there, not worth it.
Intel tool: I doubt the flag would be changed. This is a security feature for Microsoft, so I expect they would have exerted pressure to make sure it wasn't easy to amend the flag.
I see us going down the MAK route. Due to the size of the school it will be a pain, because by the time someone deals with this client again it'll be someone else and we might forget.
4th December 2013, 06:24 PM #8
We've had the same issue with a couple of RM machines. I ended up installing a MAK key via VAMT on the couple of machines affected. I just assumed that the PCs might have had replacement motherboards that didn't have the matching BIOS.
4th December 2013, 06:30 PM #9
- Rep Power
I am pleased at being helped to understand what was going on with this client.
But does anyone have a comment on why VAMT 3 always said 'Activation via KMS server successful' (or similar wording). This was inaccurate and very unhelpful and delayed successful troubleshooting of the problem.
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