How To Reset Or Remove Windows Activation/ Remove License Key Using Command

I am writing about how to reset or remove Windows Activation/Remove license key, using a command. It will work for Windows operating system in all versions. This is very important for any admin to make sure before formatting any system; just remove the license which exists in the systems or are activated.

If we are formatting the system or removing before license, it may cause you to activate the system back with the same license key, if we are using OEM or multiple activation key and doing the above without following the same process. We will be getting an error like “you have reached multiple activation limit” or “Unable to activate the windows with entered key.”

See the URL for the activation issue error code and the details.

The steps are given below to remove the activation key from the system:

  • Login to the system with an admin account and open cmd with run as admin rights.

  • slmgr /upk
    It stands to uninstall product key. The /upk parameter uninstalls the product key of the current Windows edition. Once this command will execute, we need to restart and the system will be in an unlicensed state unless a new product key is installed.

  • Enter slmgr /upk and hit enter. Subsequently, wait for this to complete. This will uninstall the current product key from Windows and will move Windows to the unlicensed mode.

  • The /cpky option removes the product key from the registry to prevent this key from being stolen or taken by malevolent code.

  • Now, enter slmgr /cpky and hit enter. Now, wait for this to complete. Once this command will execute, this will remove the product key from the registry, if it's still there. The screenshot is given below for the same result which will be on the screen.

  • Move to the next enter slmgr /rearm and wait for this to complete. This is to reset the Windows activation timers, so the new users will be prompted to activate Windows when they put in the key.

  • Once everything is done as given above, we can see our Windows activation properties status will be showing as not available.