Article ID : 00100475 / Last Modified : 07/12/2018

Windows 8 fails to activate

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To help prevent software piracy, Microsoft requires that Windows 8 is activated before it can be used. All Sony VAIO computers that come with Windows 8 installed will activate automatically once connected to the Internet. This is made possible because of the digital product key (DPK) that is installed on the motherboard during the manufacturing process.

In certain conditions, Windows may fail to activate automatically. If this would occur, please follow the steps below to resolve the issue.

  1. Ensure the unit is connected to the Internet.
  2. Press Windows Key + C to access Charms.
  3. Select Settings and Change PC Settings.
  4. Verify that the “Activate Windows” option is still present (otherwise the unit is already activated).
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  5. Attempt to activate Windows by pressing the “Activate” button. If the activation fails, activation by phone may be offered as an alternative. If this is the case, press Activate by Phone and go to step 7, otherwise proceed with step 6.


    If above procedure fails or an error is displayed, attempt to Activate unit by phone:


  6. In the command prompt enter: slui 4 and press <Enter>
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  7. The phone activation Wizard will now start. Begin by selecting your country (if the Wizard fails to start, you may proceed to step 10).
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  8. Call the displayed number and follow the instructions provided on the screen.
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  9. Click "Activate" when you are ready to complete the activation.


    In case the Activation Wizard fails to start, a full system recovery is necessary.


  10. Perform a VAIO Full System Recovery.
    NOTE: Please use VAIO Care Rescue, and not Refresh / Reset the Windows function. How to recover your VAIO?

  11. Restart the unit and follow steps 6-9 to activate by phone.


If the problem persists after completing the above steps, please contact VAIO support for further assistance.