Windows 10: Re-activation window causes disaster

Discus and support Re-activation window causes disaster in Windows 10 Updates and Activation to solve the problem; I'm writing for a relative. She was online in the Hewlett Packard forum regarding her printer. Suddenly her screen turns a 2-tone blue and a window... Discussion in 'Windows 10 Updates and Activation' started by Nikilet, May 15, 2017.

  1. Nikilet Win User

    Re-activation window causes disaster

    I'm writing for a relative. She was online in the Hewlett Packard forum regarding her printer. Suddenly her screen turns a 2-tone blue and a window opens on the screen telling her Since Windows was first activated on this computer the hardware on the computer has changed significantly. Due to these changes Windows must be reactivated within 3 days. do you want to reactivate Windows now. Yes or No There have been no changes made to her printer other than reinstalling her printer, and a Windows update. I think she said it was either on 5/13 or today, 5/15.

    She forced shutdown -- a number of times. It reacted in various ways, including opening as XP, as Win 7, and as Windows 10. When it opened as Win 10 she went to Settings/Update & Security/Activation and it showed that Windows was activated. She then went to System Restore and clicked on it; it just went round and round and never opened and suddenly a new screen opened with information about reactivating. This time it was the whole screen, not just a window on top of the blue screen. She selected "yes" this time; it did not activate, but gave her options to retry, remind me later or do it by phone.

    She went through the reactivation by phone and ended up with Windows XP. Now what can she do to get her Windows 10 back? Her copy of Windows 10 was through the free offer from Microsoft. At the time she upgraded she had Windows 7. Why would it revert back to XP?

    Nikilet, May 15, 2017
  2. BulldogXX Win User

    Upgrading my hard disk without losing the copy of windows 10

    Changing your computer's hard drive will not cause the computer to lose its activation. Just re-install Windows and it will automatically activate.
    BulldogXX, May 15, 2017
  3. Chasd1949 Win User
    Your Windows Licence Will Expire Soon Windows 10 (expiration on monday february 29,2016)

    This has been another typical Microsoft disaster. In the end I had to download a new installation from the Microsoft website and with help from their helpline got it activated. I don't know why this happened, but in the end it took a long time to re-install
    everything. It is a shame that Microsoft has a monopoly on operating systems for PC. Not a good look for Microsoft.
    Chasd1949, May 15, 2017
  4. NavyLCDR New Member

    Re-activation window causes disaster

    I would back up the data that needs to be saved, wipe the hard drive completely and do a clean install of Windows 10. She might want to run showkey plus from this forum and write down any product keys it gives, especially for the Windows 7.

    I have never heard of Windows saying it needs to be reactivated in three days. I suspect there is a virus infection. She probably also needs to scan the backup of the data for viruses before restoring it.
    NavyLCDR, May 15, 2017
  5. Berton Win User
    I've seen on earlier versions of Windows where a clean install gave 30 days but a reinstall or "dirty" install gave only 3 days to activate. Haven't yet run across the 3 days thing on a reinstall of previously activated Win10 as long as there was an Internet connection. Just this PM I did a clean install of Insider Preview with an Ethernet connection, entered my Microsoft Account information and when completed it was activated.
    Berton, May 15, 2017
  6. Bree New Member
    I'm with NavyLCDR on this. I suspect if you Google the phone number given you'll find it doesn't belong to Microsoft at all. More likely it's a malware scam. If you can get into Windows 10 again (safe mode?) try a Defender offline scan.

    Windows Defender Offline Scan in Windows 10
  7. You may already know this but just FYI, the Microsoft Account info isn't needed for activation. You can activate with a local account. Or even a totally different user name/account from when the PC was activated with a Digital License. It's the hardware that counts.
    alphanumeric, May 15, 2017
  8. Re-activation window causes disaster

    I'm curious as to what " opening as XP, as Win 7, and as Windows 10" means?

    I'm with the rest, likely an infection. Corrupted system files will cause activation failure. It's detected as a cheat, or not legitimate system.
    alphanumeric, May 15, 2017
  9. Berton Win User
    True, I was only reporting the steps I took with that computer.
    Berton, May 15, 2017
  10. I had a feeling you were going to say that. *Thumbs
    alphanumeric, May 15, 2017
  11. Nikilet Win User
    I'm going by what she told me on the computer screen. She said when it booted it showed the XP screen, the Windows 7 screen, and then finally the Windows 10 screen and even desktop characteristics.

    I thank all of you for your input. A computer tech she checked with said it's funny it would go to xp because they didn't even think xp could be upgraded to Win 10. She was told a system can not go back and forth like that and a virus will not cause that. It is possible she has a dual boot system. Anyway, I don't know for sure what she is going to do but perhaps she will have this tech work on it remotely if he thinks he can give her any help. We all live way out in the country; 100 miles away from the nearest computer shop.

    I'll let you know how things go.
    Nikilet, May 15, 2017
  12. Bree New Member
    Dual boot (well, triple if there's W7 too) could be possible. Actually you can upgrade XP to 10 if you really put your mind to it. You need to go though some intermediate upgrades first - XP to 7 then 7 to 10 would work.

    The alternative possibility is that W7 and XP are virtual machines, perhaps installed to support the HP printer (is it too old to have any W10 drivers?).

    The message you quoted: "Since Windows was first activated on this computer the hardware on the computer has changed significantly. Due to these changes Windows must be reactivated within 3 days. do you want to reactivate Windows now. Yes or No" is word for word the one XP should give, so it's possible it was running XP at the time and not 10 as she thought. The MS help number could have helped activate that XP, not realising W10 was installed.

    This PC sounds like it's a mess - without more details we can only speculate. I hope my speculations have given you some ideas to explore.
  13. Nikilet Win User

    Re-activation window causes disaster

    The last I heard, she sent me an email yesterday stating "Would you believe when I turned it on this morning it was like nothing had ever happened!"

    I assume that means that her computer has reverted back to Windows 10 and that the reactivation was sucessfull afterall. I've tried to contact her several times to confirm, but haven't got a response. My daughter, who lives by her, also said things seem to be back to normal.

    I just wanted to report back since you were all so kind to try and help. If I hear anything different I will let you know.
    Nikilet, May 16, 2017
  14. Bree New Member
    Thanks for the update. Please do let us know if you get to the bottom of this, you've got us intrigued *Smile

    My bet is on an XP VM to support an obsolete HP printer...
  15. Nikilet Win User
    She finally got back to me. I don't know if a real determination has been made on what caused all this, but the reactivation she went through apparently ended up working as she confirmed that when she turned her machine on yesterday everything was back in place. She has an external hard drive coming and is going to have that tech person access her computer remotely and take care of all that backup stuff for her. I'm so happy for her. This is just a family farm but they farm over 10,000 acres and have lots of leased lands and such and it would be a real nightmare for them if she lost her information so I'm really tickled she has ordered an external and is going to get that backup business taken care of.

    Thanks for listening to me on this.
    Nikilet, May 16, 2017

Re-activation window causes disaster

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