KMS Activation failed with Server 2008R2 SP1 or Windows 7 SP1



Running Active Directory Server 2008 R2

DNS and DHCP services running on Server 2008 R2

Single Domain

Multiple Forward Lookup Zones Configured in DNS

Running KMS Services on Server 2003. (Handles activations of Win7, Server 2008, Ofice 2010) KMS srv record configured in DNS to point all clients to KMS host. This was setup by adding a service record at the root of DNS under _tcp. I added the forward lookup zone _tcp at the root of our DNS for the vlmcs srv record manually.

Prior to Win7 SP1 being released, all clients activated without any issues. Activation issues started when Win 7 and Server 3008 ISO's were released with SP1 slipstreamed. The error code mentioned in this thread would occur when the activation was attempted from the client. Seemingly the only way to activate the client was to use the MAK code.

After many days pounding on this issue I found a work around that would allow client machines that were built with the SP1 ISO's to activate through KMS. While not an acceptable solution it does work. The trick was to manually point the client to your local KMS host server. The command to accomplish this is as follows:

From an elivated command prompt on the client machine, type: slmgr -skms "KMS Server IP Address" (without quotations) After entering the command, client machines would activate normally.

At first I thought I discovered the miracle cure for activation issues, but soon decided there has to more to this since I didn't have the problem before SP1 was released. Plus, running around typing in the above command was not going to be fun given the number of machines affected by this issue.

Many days went by trying to figure this out I came to the conclusion that is must be a DNS issue. SP1 probably fixed some holes in Activation or who knows what. Anyway, to make a long story short, here is what I did to fix the problem.

The main problem was I had to _tcp forward lookup zones in my DNS configuration. One at the root and one in the DomainName forward lookup zone. To fix it, I deleted the _tcp lookup zone from the root of DNS. Next, I added the _vlmcs service record within the domain name _tcp records. This solved activation problems for computers joined to the domain, but not for machines that belonged to workgroups (non-domain computers). To fix activation for non-domain computers, I added option 135 (domain suffix search order) to the DHCP server options. See instructions below.

1. Open up the DHCP MMC.
2. Navigate DHCP and choose the DHCP server name.
3. Right Click on the IPv4
4. Choose "Set Predefined Options"
5. Click on Add.
6. Name: "Domain suffix search order"

Data Type: String
Code: "135" (without the quotation marks)
Description: "List of domain suffixes in order" (without the quotation marks)
String: Enter "" (without the quotation marks)

7. Click OK to save changes.
8. Exit the DHCP MMC and restart the DHCP Server Service.
9. Open the DHCP MMC again and add the new scope option 135 to your server options/scope.
10. Windows 7 w/sp1 and Office 2010 will activate without issue.

Once these steps were taken, the activations worked as expected.

I hope this helps fellow IS people to fix activation problems.


Setup of KMS server in Enterprise an several unwanted KMS DNS Entrys

Setup of KMS server in Enterprise an several unwanted KMS DNS Entrys

While installing a KMS Server for Enterprise we had already had two or three DNS entrys per Domain Controller already there. But the KMS was not installed and planned before.

We found out that the person installing the Server 2008R2 used tke KMS-key to activate the Server itself instead of using a MAK key. You only need the KMS ONCE per company or Domain

and then leave the Server 2008R2, WIndows 7, Vista as they are. They will connect to the KMS Server and do the rest. Everything goes over one or two KMS keys or KMS Groups.

Mostly people don't understand that you need to activate a minimum of 5 servers or 25 windows 7 or 5 Office 2010 to get the whole thing running.

If you try to run with 4 servers 2008R as example at the end it will fail (After Grace period).



 So while looking at DNS an TCP\ you had two _VLMCS entrys there. If you don't want Round Robin Redudancy

something is wrong here. (Worng keys used for installing the Server)

If you use the KMS key for installing a nommal 2008R2 Windows automaticly thinks THIS is the KMS licence

server an dthus install the KMS licence server in the background.


You need to change the product key of the machines that should not be KMS

slmgr /IPK xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx

Then activate with that key

Slmgr /ATO

Then we need to stop and restart the service( the name is different depending on the product)

For Windows Vista or for Windows Server 2008

net stop slsvc

For Windows 7 or for Windows Server 2008 R2

net stop sppsvc

For Windows Vista or for Windows Server 2008

net start slsvc

For Windows 7 or for Windows Server 2008 R2

net start sppsvc
Also check:

Office 2010 APPV, MAK oder KMS Server, Product Activation

Links for: Office 2010 APPV, MAK oder KMS Server, Product Activation

* APPV Sequence Office 2010
Office 2010 APPV MS
Application Virtualization-Anwendungspakete, office 2010
Office 2010 Softgridblog with a lot of videos and good explanation

* KMS/MAK Licence Server
Key Management Services (KMS-Server) Windows Vista und Windows Server 2008 Lizenzserver
Volume Activation 2.0 for Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008
Determine KMS host on network


* Office 2010 Activation
Office 2010 KMS Aktivierung
Troubleshoot volume activation for Office 2010
Reactivate Office 2010
C:\Program Files\Common Files\microsoft shared\OfficeSoftwareProtectionPlatform\OSPPREARM.exe
Office 2010 volume activation a nightmare

* Samples from diffrent MS customer (Text samples office activation, german)




Here are the steps to get it running with KMS (Minimum 5 Office clients) and Office 2010

KMS Minumum:

05pcs Server2008/R

05pcs Office 2010

25pcs Vista, Windows 7

Thats means to GET it running fix you have to run 5 offices in min. with KMS Server. Or if min 25 Windows 7 clients. If you never have 25 WIndows 7 client

online it want turn as it should.


1. Take an existing Windows Server 2003, 2008R2 or a Windows 7 Client (name in this example is

2. Install the KeyManagementServiceHost and activate the host above

3. Install the KMS Signature of Office 2010 on the host above using: slmgr.vbs /dli 86f3489b-e730-45ee-ad42-039a64c82ba4

4. When you install Office 2010 on the client let this batch file run right after the Office installation:


@Echo Off

If not exist "%ProgramFiles(x86)%\Microsoft Office\Office14" Goto x64

pushd "%ProgramFiles(x86)%\Microsoft Office\Office14"

cscript ospp.vbs /

cscript ospp.vbs /act


Goto End


pushd "%ProgramFiles%\Microsoft Office\Office14"

cscript ospp.vbs /

cscript ospp.vbs /act




After the installation of Office 2010 (32 bit) on a 32 or 64 bit Windows 7, Vista or WinXP the kms host is set (/sethst) and the Office is activated (/act).