Windows 10 20h2 Pro digital license activation issue

Ratliff, Garrett 21 Reputation points

Good morning. We recently purchased numerous HP z2 SFF G5 computers with Windows 10 Pro installed from HP. We usually reimage these computers to get rid of the bloatware and create a new system image that we build in house with specific programs installed for our users. We have been reimaging them with 1909 and running the troubleshooter to activate the license. This week I reimaged a pc using 20h2 and ran into an issue activating Windows. The troubleshooter could not complete as it said it had issues connecting to the internet. We have a 500 MB up and down circuit in our building that was working properly. I downgraded back to 1909 and the troubleshooter had no problems activating Windows. Is there a work around or will be have to use our license from our VLSC portal to reimage the computers with 20h2?

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Windows 10 Setup
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Windows 10: A Microsoft operating system that runs on personal computers and tablets.Setup: The procedures involved in preparing a software program or application to operate within a computer or mobile device.
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Accepted answer
  1. Teemo Tang 11,366 Reputation points

    Once a Windows 10 Pro has been activated on a PC, this PC has a digital license, then we can reinstall/reimage free on it, after connect to Internet, the PC with new version of Windows 10 will activate automatically by activation troubleshooter.
    So there are two points need to notice:

    1. Make sure these HP z2 SFF G5 computers are activated before reimage.
    2. Make sure your new customized 20H2 image has been sysprerp and doesn’t have the software which may influence Windows activation or network.
      You could use a clean Windows 10 20H2 image for reimage on a HP z2 SFF G5 to test activation state.


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3 additional answers

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  1. Jason C 6 Reputation points

    Just wanted to add some input to this. I experienced the same exact issue. When using the latest ISO for 20H2 (March 2021), Windows could not be activated. The same occurred with the February version of the ISO as well. When I imaged a computer using the original 20H2 iso (Nov 2020), I could activate Windows like before. It appears something broke in the process where ISOs are being updated monthly.

    1 person found this answer helpful.

  2. Reza-Ameri 16,846 Reputation points

    I recommend you to submit a feedback through Feedback Hub app in your Windows 10 device and explain how you reproduce this problem.

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  3. Ratliff, Garrett 21 Reputation points

    I had to downgrade the 20H2 back down to 1909 and then activate it. Once I activated Windows, I did an in place upgrade to 20H2. The Customized Z2's are reimaged with a clean 20H2 image before we customize the software that is running on it. I just found it strange that the 20H2 image was unable to see the digital Windows 10 Pro license that came on the preinstalled OS. We will probably let WSUS take care of updating at least one PC that is in our different LANs and then let the other computers grab the updates from it instead of beating up our bandwidth.