Troubleshoot Windows Activation Errors

Windows can present activation errors for a wide variety of reasons, run through the steps below to troubleshoot.

  1. 0xC004F050 error code

    How to fix windows 10 (0xc004f050) error code

    What it means:
    This error code means the activation key cannot activate the edition of Windows you have installed on your PC and is most commonly seen when an OEM activation key is used outside of its license terms:

    – The license can only be activated on a newly built computer system by the system builder.
    – The license cannot be used to upgrade an existing installation, e.g. going from Home to Pro.
    – Activation requires a fresh Windows installation using the ISO.

    – Perform a fresh Windows installation using the ISO.
    – Purchase a “retail” product key that does not have the same limitations as an OEM key.

    Windows 10 installation guide
    Windows 11 installation guide

  2. Internet connection & system time

    No internet connection

    Make sure your computer is connected to the internet and that the system date and time is set correctly for your timezone.

    If you have no internet connection, you will see the icon shown above.

  3. Activation troubleshooter

    Activation troubleshooter

    Run the Windows Activation Troubleshooter which will attempt to automatically resolve any issues.

  4. Windows update

    Windows update

    Check Windows Update for any outstanding updates, download and install any outstanding updates.

  5. Restart your PC


    Restart your PC and retry the activation.

  6. Activate by phone

    Activate by phone

    Try a phone activation by clicking the Activate by Phone link on the activation page (if the option is shown).