Thursday, February 15, 2018

KMS Activation Error 0xc004f074

I recently had issues deploying a new KMS server to activate Windows 10 LTSB 2016 at a customer.  We deployed LTSB to remove all the bloatware from the Windows Store, Edge and other unwanted items like candy crush saga which Microsoft believes enterprise organisations should have in an enterprise version of Windows!

After setting up the KMS server, the following error were experienced on the endpoints:

We can't activate Windows on this device because we can't connect to your organisation's server. Make sure that you're connected to your organisation's network and try again. If you continue having problems with activation, contact your organisation's support person. Error code: 0xC004F074.

Activating Windows(R), EnterpriseS edition
Error: 0xC004F074 The Software Licensing Server reported that the computer could not be activated. No Key Management Service (KMS) could be contacted. Please see the Application Event Log for additional information.

License Activation (slui.exe) failed with the following error code:

Event ID: 8198
Source: Security-SPP

The KMS Server we deployed was running "Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacentre edition".

The key we used from our Microsoft VLSC portal was "Windows Srv 2012R2 DataCtr/Std KMS for Windows 10" - the key recommended for Activating Windows 10.

After liaising with Microsoft with regards to the error, Microsoft advised me that the KMS Key "Windows Srv 2012R2 DataCtr/Std KMS for Windows 10" can only be used for "Windows 10 LTSB 2015".

In order to activate Windows 10 LTSB 2016, you need to use the "Windows Svr 2016 DataCtr/Std KMS" Key.  This will also activate all other builds of Windows 10, Windows 8.1 and Windows 7.  This is what it should look like in your Microsoft VLSC Portal.

In order to install this Server 2016 KMS Key on Windows Server 2012 R2, you must first install the KB3172614 patch.  This can be downloaded from the following URL:

Once this patch is installed, perform the following:

1. Uninstall any current KMS keys on the KMS server with the following command:

slmgr.vbs /upk

2. Install the new "Windows Svr 2016 DataCtr/Std KMS" Key from the your VLSC Portal.


3. Activate the KMS Server

slmgr.vbs /ato

4. Check the key was installed correctly

slmgr/vbs /dlv

Next on your workstation's install the correct KMS Client Key which can be viewed here:

To install use the same command on the server, just using the KMS Client Key instead:


Then activate it against the KMS Server:

slmgr.vbs /ato

I hope this post has been helpful.

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