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How can I setup KMS (key management server) for activating Windows 10 ?

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Hi all,
here's some brief note's for setting up KMS for activating Windows 10.
Step 1. Setup Server 2012 R2
First things first, you need to setup up a new 2012 R2 KMS server, because it won't work with Windows 2008 R2. Windows 2008 R2 is (currently) not supported for activating Windows 10 using KMS.
For info on that, see here.
Update: 2015/9/16 a new hotfix has been released by Microsoft here (Enables Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 KMS hosts to activate Windows 10)
Jump to Step 3 !. If you are using Server 2012R2 please go to step 2.
If you are running Windows Server 2008 R2 or Windows 7, be on the lookout for an update to support using those as KMS hosts for Windows 10 clients.

 

Step 2. Install a hotfix to add support for activating later versions of Windows
Install the following hotfix:
do you want to install the following windows software.png
which is an Update that enables Windows 8.1 and Windows 8 KMS hosts to activate a later version of Windows. More info > https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/dn502537.aspx
I wasn't prompted to reboot, but you may want to do so anyway.

Step 3. Login to the Volume License site

 

You need to get a new KMS Host key from the Volume License Service Center that is capable of activating Windows 10. To do so, login with adequate credentials and then click License, then Relationship Summary. Click the License ID of your current Active license. You may have more than one Active License, so if it does not appear under one, check the other.

 

Once the page changes, click Product Keys.

 

Scroll down the list and look for:

Windows Srv 2012R2 DataCtr/Std KMS for Windows 10

Save this key somewhere safe, you'll need it later.

Step 4. Add the Volume Activation Services role

 

After installing Windows Server 2012 open Server Manager and choose Add roles and features, choose Role-Based or Feature-Based installation. Choose your local Windows Server 2012 Server from the Server Pool.

 

Choose the Volume Activation Services role. You may be prompted to add features that are required for Volume Activation Services such as Remote Server Administration Tools, if so, click on Add features and continue through that wizard until completion.

 

volume activation tools.png

 

Click Close when done, you will see a Yellow Triangle in Server manager which means that the role is installed but there is additional post deployment configuration required.

 

yellow triangle.png

 

Step 5. Configure the Volume Activation Services role

 

To configure it, click VA Services in the left pane.

 

va services.png

 

Next click on the More text to the right of Configuration required for Volume Activation Services at SERVERNAME. This will popup All Servers Task Details and Notifications.

 

Volume activation tools link.png

 

click on the Volume activation tools link and then decide what Volume Activation Method you want to use in the Select Volume Activation Method screen, use the default (Key Management Service (KMS))

 

select volume activation method.png

 

on the Product Key Management screen enter your KMS host key retrieved above in Step 3 from the VLSC site.

 

install kms host key.png

 

After entering a valid Windows 10 KMS Host Key, you'll need to commit the change and you'll see that it has been accepted

 

KMS key for windows 10 accepted.png

 

you may be prompted to activate the key, click on Activate Product

 

you can activate by phone or online.png

 

you can select to Activate Online or by Activate by Phone and then click on the Commit button,

 

answer Yes when prompted and review the final screen and then continue through that wizard until completion.

 

Step 6. Get the Windows 10 KMS Client Setup keys

 

The Windows 10 Client KMS keys are available here

 

Operating system edition KMS Client Setup Key

 

Windows 10 Professional W269N-WFGWX-YVC9B-4J6C9-T83GX

Windows 10 Professional N MH37W-N47XK-V7XM9-C7227-GCQG9

Windows 10 Enterprise NPPR9-FWDCX-D2C8J-H872K-2YT43

Windows 10 Enterprise N DPH2V-TTNVB-4X9Q3-TJR4H-KHJW4

Windows 10 Education NW6C2-QMPVW-D7KKK-3GKT6-VCFB2

Windows 10 Education N 2WH4N-8QGBV-H22JP-CT43Q-MDWWJ

Windows 10 Enterprise 2015 LTSB WNMTR-4C88C-JK8YV-HQ7T2-76DF9

Windows 10 Enterprise 2015 LTSB N 2F77B-TNFGY-69QQF-B8YKP-D69TJ

 

 

Step 7.Test the KMS server configuration

 

To test the KMS server configuration, open a cmd prompt as shown below and enter

slmgr /ato

depending on whether you have less that 25 computers online or not you'll see different messages as shown below, note that in this example I'm specifying the kms host manually, you do not need to do that if DNS is working properly

 

activating test.png

 

(more details about that here)

 

cheers

niall

 

Related Reading

 

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It is worth noting the activation thresholds for a KMS on Server 2012.

 

KMS maintains an activation threshold, which requires that the organization activate at least five computers (physical or virtual machines) running a server operating system with Windows Server 2012 or later and at least 25 client computers running Windows 8 or later. The computers running Windows Server 2012 must connect within a 30-day period to active KMS client computers.

 

From: Volume Activation Overview

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I am trying to get this set up on a Windows 2008 R2 Std. Server with activating windows 10, can you by chance provide me with step by step instructions on how to do this? I have been searching the web for hours for assistance but can not find any good write ups on how to accomplish this.

 

Thank you.

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I have a question regarding KMS, after reading your all posts I understand KMS requires 25 Client OS request and 5 Server OS request in order to start activation,

 

in my KMS server the Current Count is 50, I don't understand what does it mean and what is the next number of this count 51 or 0

 

I tried a lot but unable to clear the concept of "Current Count" of KMS, please explain

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