Windows reimaging rights questions



  • I have some questions about Windows activation after image deployment with FOG Project. I hope someone have time to answer.

    I’ve created an image with preinstalled programs and unattend file. The unattend file completes OOBE automaticly except username and password for local user.
    I’ve made this image from an OEM licensed machine and experienced activation problems after deployment to another OEM computer. I read some @x23piracy posts on the forum explaining reimaging rights and thought that it might be why i have problems?

    Here comes the questions;
    Would a volume license from Microsoft Volume Licensing Service Center give me the reimaging rights?
    If I activate an clean Windows image with the VL. Can I deploy it on OEM machines and reuse the OEM key stored in BIOS? - And would it count as another used VL key in the MVLSC with every deployment?

    Thank you in advance.

    Best regards
    OrKarstoft



  • Alright. Thank you everyone for your time and answers.


  • Moderator

    @OrKarstoft said in Windows reimaging rights questions:

    which equals payment of another key

    Please check with your MS licensing vendor/specialist for a comment on the pay requirement.

    All of the documentation I found says as long as you are deploying the same OS level as the OEM eula that single (1) VL key is all you need. It IS your responsibility to ensure you maintain proper paperwork to show you purchased X number of systems with OEM keys installed.



  • @x23piracy Thank you very much for your comment.

    Our computers comes with Windows activated with OEM keys of course. Building an image with a VL is no problem. My main worry is how to get the Windows activated with the OEM key insted of purchasing another key. - As far as I know the VL key from MVLSC would count up if it stays in the deployed Windows, which equals payment of another key.


  • Moderator

    @x23piracy said in Windows reimaging rights questions:

    my company is on a strict way up to the ms clouds, i have to deal with intune (autopilot) i hate it, FOG rules! that said!

    Some how I want to make a comment about you head is in the microsoft clouds and feet planted firmly in the FOG. But that is just silly.



  • Hi,

    i tried to activate a VL Image with an OEM key and this doesn’t work!
    But with a single VL Key you can activate up to 250 machines (my last information) maybe its lower today until it counts out. You can see the activation count in the VLC.

    Doing this more then once is okay if the target machine has an oem key in its bios. Remember the reference image needs to be build based on the VL Media!

    Thats all about the trick purchasing one VL copy of for example Windows 10 Pro to gain the reimaging rights.
    Also the activation count can be resetted, i don’t know anymore if this happens after x days or can be done another way.

    In the past i gave a s*** on that part in the eula, at least when everbody is onboarded to the cloud microsoft isn’t interested anymore in doing sam checks, so i was used to activate my computers by reading the key from bios and activating it by a snapin that was doing nothing more then slmgr.vbs /ipk key followed by a slmgr.vbs /ato ;)

    P.S. my company is on a strict way up to the ms clouds, i have to deal with intune (autopilot) i hate it, FOG rules! that said!

    Bild Text

    Regards X23


  • Moderator

    @OrKarstoft said in Windows reimaging rights questions:

    So if i understand you correctly then my issue with my computers not taking the Windows key from BIOS does not have anything to do with the golden image is made on OEM license and deployed on another machine with OEM license? - These OEM licenses could be from two different manufacturers.

    The root of the issue is you can not take an activated OEM image from one computer and capture with any cloning tool and deploy it to another computer. It will not activate automatically. There are ways to activate it but that would be against the EULA to do so. It will only automatically activate using the original OEM media. The OEM license comes from microsoft, so if you have a HP computer and a Dell OEM media that HP computer’s Win10 license WILL activate using the Dell OEM media (at least based on my experiences).

    And just to clarify. I’m supposed to install a Windows media with VL. I my case, the VL comes from the MVLSC. Then start in audit mode, make the changes needed and then sysprep, capture, deploy and insert BIOS key?

    This is a two part answer. If you are looking at a one shot solution (set it up once then forget it) you can do as you outlined in audit mode. The issue is with Win10 its not a one shot any more. With each new release you will (should) make a new reference image. That means at least every 18 months you will be doing this (build from DVD, audit mode, install applications, image capture, testing, deployment). A better approach (but take more time to setup initially) is to build your reference image using Microsoft’s (free) Microsoft Deployment Toolkit [MDT]. Use MDT to install MS Windows like you need, with all of the customization and windows updates, then have it install all of your core applications and any settings you need to the system. Do this using the lite touch method of deployment (once you start the initial deployment you don’t touch MDT until its done with the target VM fully configured and ready for sysprep). Then sysprep the reference image, capture with your deployment tools and the deploy (note that I did not say fog in the guidance. I would do this same process for any deployment tool, even Microsoft’s). By using MDT and task sequences you will get a reliable and repeatable reference image each time you create a new master image. When a new release of windows 10 comes out then you would simply load the new vl media create a new task sequence and copy the actions from the previous task sequence into the new task sequence and then build. Its pretty easy since you already have the logic worked out in your task sequence.

    If this is correct, would my VL from MVLSC count as used twice, since its deployed and changed key?

    Understand I’m not a MS licensing expert so you should always consult with a professional in this area, but from what I understand the VL license gives you reimaging rights. You are not upgrading your OEM license only reimaging using the VL key. Your MAK count will increase for every deployment that is activated, but you will not be out of compliance since you are just using the same licensing level. That bit of info should be covered in Chris’ document on Spiceworks.



  • First of all I’d like to thank you for your answer @george1421 !

    So if i understand you correctly then my issue with my computers not taking the Windows key from BIOS does not have anything to do with the golden image is made on OEM license and deployed on another machine with OEM license? - These OEM licenses could be from two different manufacturers.

    And just to clarify. I’m supposed to install a Windows media with VL. I my case, the VL comes from the MVLSC. Then start in audit mode, make the changes needed and then sysprep, capture, deploy and insert BIOS key? - If this is correct, would my VL from MVLSC count as used twice, since its deployed and changed key?


  • Moderator

    @OrKarstoft Well lets start off with licensing rights are out of scope for the FOG Project. It is the IT admin’s responsibility to ensure their company is in compliance with all EULAs. FOG is only a tool to aid in image deployment.

    With that said, if you haven’t read this article from Spiceworks its worth a read: https://community.spiceworks.com/how_to/124056-reimaging-rights-for-windows-10-licensing-how-to

    In a nut shell Windows OEM licenses doesn’t cover reimaging rights. You may only install an OEM image from an authorized OEM media. You may not adjust the OEM image recapture and redeploy that image. OEM images must be installed as they came from the OEM manufacturer without any adjustments.

    What you can do is buy a single Windows 10 (Pro) VL license. That single license will allow you to create a custom image for deployment. You would use the VL media to create your golden image and not OEM media. You will use your VL key to activate the workstation. As long as your OEM windows version is exactly the same as your VL media you are allowed to do this. You are not allowed to purchase 1 VL key for Windows 10 Pro (version does not matter) and upgrade your OEM Windows 10 Home to Windows 10 Pro license. This is a platform upgrade. If this is your case then you need to purchase the number of VL keys where you are converting from Win10 Home to Win10Pro. The same holds true upgrading from Win10 Pro OEM to Win10 Enterprise, in this case you will need 1 Win10 Ent license for every Win10 Pro OEM you want to upgrade.

    Your VL key will not activate a OEM image.


 

600
Online

5.4k
Users

12.6k
Topics

118.6k
Posts