Windows 10 · July 26, 2021 0

Help Upgraded Win 10 activation after formatting Windows 10

Windows 10 Trouble : Upgraded Win 10 activation after formatting
Error Trouble : Good morning,I’m posting here after discussing with Dell. I have a Dell Precision 5510 that came with Windows 7 Pro, no hardware change. It is an old company laptop that I’m recycling for personal use since I got a new one and already migrated the company stuff there. The old laptop was upgraded to Win 10 maybe three or four years ago and never had an issue. After formatting it won’t activate since “Windows reported that no product key was found on your device. Error code: 0xC004F213”. I had used the “Dell OS Recovery tool” so I contacted Dell. They formatted it again using Microsoft’s ISO and

User : Arcadi.Sanmartin
Question : Upgraded Win 10 activation after formatting
Update : Last reply 4 hours 12 minutes ago
Solved : Arcadi.Sanmartin
Views : 10 views
Answer : 4 replies

How to Fix Upgraded Win 10 activation after formatting on Windows 10?

  1. Hi Arcadi. I’m Greg, an Independent Advisor, Volunteer Moderator and 10 year Windows MVP here to help you.g

    When you first Upgraded it assigned a permanent Digital License for the PC in Microsoft Activation servers so that you can reinstall Windows 10 at any time, skipping the Product Key during install, and it will reactivate afterwards when you connect to the internet and it phones home to find your hardware profile confirming the Digital License.

    There is no Product Key for a Digital License. If you try to change the key from the generic version key (present when you install without a key) it will never activate with the DL.

    However since the main reason a DL will not activate after reinstall is due to the wrong version being installed, and almost all Windows 10 that comes preinstalled from factory is Home version, is there any chance this is due to the wrong version being installed?

    If you’re unsure about this then I’d recontact Dell and ask them if they installed the same version that Service Tag shipped with.

    You can check the factory OEM Product Key embedded in the BIOS using the Command Prompt, type CMD in Search, Run as Administrator, copy and paste the command here and press Enter:

    wmic path softwarelicensingservice get OA3xOriginalProductKey

    Then copy and paste the key into Windows Activation Settings.

    If that doesn’t help then contact Microsoft Support and they will also derive the key and be able to check it’s version and if it’s the correct one then they should activate it for you based on what they’ve been doing for others who have an embedded OEM BIOS key detected.

    Contact Microsoft Support at… or at choose Get Help, then Contact Us toward the bottom, then answer Yes you can Sign In, then Select Product: Windows, then tell the Issue, it should offer Messaging and/or a Call Back on week days.

    I hope this helps. Feel free to ask any questions. Based on the results you post back I may have other suggestions if necessary.


    Standard Disclaimer: There are links to non-Microsoft websites. The pages appear to be providing accurate, safe information. Watch out for ads on the sites that may advertise products frequently classified as a PUP (Potentially Unwanted Products). Thoroughly research any product advertised on the sites before you decide to download and install it.

  2. In reply to Greg Carmack – Windows MVP …’s post on July 26, 2021

    Hi Greg,

    Thanks so much for your quick response, much appreciated. I’ve gone through what you suggested:

    – Check Windows version: The version that originally came preinstalled with the laptop was Win 7 Pro. It was later upgraded to Win 10 Pro. The dates are approximate but it was early 2016 when I first got the laptop with Win 7 Pro, somewhere in 2017 it was upgraded to Win 10 Pro and worked just fine until one month ago that I formatted it.

    – OEM Product Key: I tried the wmic to get the key but it returns a blank result. It just returns “OA3xOriginalProductKey” and a three blank lines. This was also what the Dell service guy tried remotely before reinstalling, with the same blank result.

    – Contact Microsoft: I tried that as well and the “contact us” towards the bottom is this link: that takes me to another one and after explaining the issue and suggesting troubleshooting and similar solutions finally offers me the option to “Get community help” but no Messaging or a Call Back.

    Please let me know what else can I try, and thanks so much for your help.


    Reply Report abuse

    Was this reply helpful?

    Yes No

  3. Hi Arcadi. I’m Greg, an Independent Advisor, Volunteer Moderator and 10 year Windows MVP here to help you.

    I’d try Support again on a week day during the day.

    If there is no embedded key it means that Dell must have shipped it with a separate Product Key which they should have records of. They know full well that it’s illegal to sell preinstalled Windows without it having a way to activate, so they need to make it right or you can report it to Microsoft here:…

    I would call Dell back and ask for a supervisor. Tell them you spoke with an Moderator in Microsoft’s Community forums who told you this and that you need them to make this right. If there is no OEM-BIOS key shipped due to it being Pro version, then they should have a record in the Service Tag that it was activated with a retail Key and provide you with the key if it wasn’t provided when you bought it.

    Keep me posted on your progress as I will be here to help until the case is resolved.

  4. In reply to Greg Carmack – Windows MVP …’s post on July 26, 2021

    Hi Greg,

    Thanks so much for your reply. I’ll try again with MS Support tomorrow. Meanwhile I’ll contact Dell again, they are very responsive and assisted me remotely with the installation so I’m sure they are willing to help.

    I’ll keep you posted.

    Best regards.

    Reply Report abuse

    Was this reply helpful?

    Yes No

Upgraded Win 10 activation after formatting fixed Laptop Windows 10 | Resolve Upgraded Win 10 activation after formatting PC Windows 10