There have been reports that some Windows 10 Pro users have found that that their correctly licensed installations are being deactivated. We have the full story.
On systems affected by the issue, Windows reports that a Windows 10 Home license key is being used with a Windows 10 Pro installation. The recommended solution is that the system needs to be wiped and Windows 10 Home installed or a genuine Windows 10 Pro key needs to be used. DO NOT DO THIS. It is not necessary!
It has also been suggested that most of the reports appear to be coming from users who obtained the Windows 10 license thanks to the free upgrade path Microsoft offered back in 2015, pointing to that as somehow related to it.
Jeff Jones, Sr. Director, Microsoft released this statement…
“We’re working to restore product activations for the limited number of affected Windows 10 Pro customers.”
Jeff Jones, Sr. Director, Microsoft then released this update…
“A limited number of customers experienced an activation issue that our engineers have now addressed. Affected customers will see resolution over the next 24 hours as the solution is applied automatically. In the meantime, they can continue to use Windows 10 Pro as usual.”
On a thread on the Microsoft Community Forums a Microsoft employee Paul Sey posted this explanation giving more detail…
“We are aware of reports that some customers’ Windows 10 Pro and Windows 10 Enterprise machines are not recognizing their licenses as activated. Users may receive the following notification: “Error: you are running Windows 10 Pro, but you have valid digital license for Windows 10 Home," or one of the following error codes 0X803F8001, 0xC004C003. We are actively working to resolve this within 24 hours. You can still use your PC; however, the watermark will appear until activation is restored. Thank you for your patience. We will update this post with additional information as needed and once activations are restored.”
Users then started reporting that they could resolve the issue with Troubleshooter.
Finally Microsoft updated the thread in their community forums saying…
Any affected customer can continue to use Windows 10 Pro as usual, and the watermark will disappear within 24 hours as activation is automatically restored. To manually resolve the issue: Select the Start button, select Settings > Update & security > Activation, and then select Troubleshoot to run the Activation Troubleshooter. (If the device is already activated, the Troubleshoot option will not appear.)
Here are the steps in more detail…
Go to Settings via Action Center > All settings or use the shortcut Windows key+I
Navigate to Update & Security > Activation
Click the link for the Troubleshooter
Windows should reactivate as normal, assuming your key or digital license was genuine before all this happened.
Microsoft has now closed the thread on their community forum but not before 1274 people had flagged up they had the same problem and the thread had 451 replies.