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Monday, October 29, 2012

How to Activate Windows 8

As I said in my last post, I struggled quite a bit to get Windows 8 activated. I use the VLK edition, and I'm not 100% sure if this problem that I encountered is limited to only this edition; I suspect so. But anyway, here's the story.

Whenever I tried to activate my Windows 8, I got the message "Error 0x8007007B The File name, directory name, or volume label syntax is incorrect." This irritated me to no end. I assumed (correctly, as it turned out) that it had something to do with the fact that I was never asked to enter a product key, and Microsoft didn't include a "change product key" option as they did in previous Windows versions.

So whenever the Windows GUI fails me, it's time to get down and dirty with the Command Prompt. If you're having the same problem, here's what you should do:

1. Open an elevated command prompt by going to Start, then typing "cmd". The Command Prompt option will appear on screen. Right-click it and then select "Run as Administrator" from the bottom of the screen.

2. In the elevated command prompt, change your product key by typing the following: "slmgr.vbs /ipk XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX" (Obviously replace the X's with your product key.) Then press Enter. You will see a message pop up on-screen indicating that your product key has been changed.

3. Next, still in the elevated command prompt, activate Windows by typing the following: "slmgr.vbs /ato". A message should pop up indicating that Windows is activated. Voila!

It's as simple as that. I trust that this will help someone!

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