SOLVED Windows 10 suddenly requires activation


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I've had win10 running on my pc since I installed the free upgrade from Win8.1. Suddenly, I booted and a grey notice appeared telling me to activate. In Settings, it confirmed that Win10 was not activated. HOWEVER there is no way I can enter an installation key code. Anyway, I restored a system backup from a few days before and all is well. Question is, why did this happen?
 
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Something you did caused it to think there was a hardware change.?
 
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LOL yeah, probably should have phrased that to "it "thought" there was a hardware change..." LOL. Or I suppose it could have decided the key was bad - I had that happen once when a corporate key "expired". Good for you that you restored back a few days and it worked!!!

EDIT: I suppose there's a possibility that it got confused and thought you were trying to use the key twice. Or re-use an old key, which I occasionally do - it's quite forgiving these days if you just feed it the key again...
 
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This is VERY old thread. but, no - I think it happens only if the OS finds itself on a different SSD or HD, or if it noticed the mobo has been changed - like different chipset - it's looking for things that would indicate it had been illegally cloned/copied and was now somewhere else than when it had been activated. Memory updates happen constantly and would be no cause (to it) for concern. Folks like me often change SSD, and/or mobo, but still keep only 1 copy active for that key, so have to call in and have it manually re-keyed over the phone, but I think they have automated even more of that process lately. But I got rid of the box and just using laptops and tend to use the key on the bottom of it, or buy a cheap retail key on ebay that I can easily re-use/make hardware changes. But I always play it legal - one OEM key per mobo, unless go through phone activation because the previous one burnt up (I have fried mobos). Whatever you do, just be legal - do the phone thing!

If you lost your key, just buy a cheap retail key on ebay and use that. That's what I did when I wanted to move win7 and wanted to play with win10 for a bit. I keep paper copies and photo copies of keys so I don't lose them. I run Ubuntu 18.10,but constantly change it, and having a retail key for win7 which is on the same SSD means I don't have to worry if the SSD or laptop bites the dust. I used to have a strip of legal OEM COA's lying around, but more and more, MS is not allowing them, esp as win7 gets close. The cheap retail win7 key solves all that. I think my spare laptop is using an old OEM key, but I haven't powered it up since I got this T530 and the retail key for it.
 
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I have an OEM version on my HP. I've swapped hdd's multiple times and changed out video cards with no issue. It's really tied to the motherboard.
 

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