Product key doesn't work after upgraded to Windows 8.1 from a Sony VAIO with Windows 8 preinstalled

Last week I bought a Sony VAIO with Windows 8 preinstalled (I have most likely a Windows 8 OEM key somehow embedded in the computer).

Today I went to Microsofts website and saw I could upgrade to Windows 8.1. I clicked the link on Microsofts website and it launched Windows Store where I started the upgrade.

Now when Windows 8.1 is installed on my laptop and I check the Windows activation page and its saying that the product key doesn't work. I am getting "Error code: 0xC004C003".

I assume that my upgrade was eligible since I do have a valid Windows 8 key (since Windows 8 was preinstalled) and I could start the upgrade from Microsofts own store.

How do I resolve this? Meaning, how do I get Windows activated after upgrading to Windows 8.1 using a Sony VAIO wich has Windows 8 preinstalled?

Sincerely,
Christoffer
 

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Last updated January 21, 2020 Views 6,860 Applies to:

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try activating by phone

1. Press Windows key + X then clickRun, then type: slui.exe 4

2. Next press the 'ENTER' key

3. Select your 'Country' from the list.

4. Choose the 'Phone Activation' option.

5. Stay on the phone (do not select/press any options) and wait for a person to help you with activation.

6. Explain your problem clearly to the support person.


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Update:

After speaking with Microsoft support, they requested my product key. But since I have laptop with a preinstalled Windows 8, I don't actually have access to my key. The Windows 8 key is injected into the BIOS of the PC, and I can only see the 4 digits on Windows activation page.

Microsoft support asked me to contact my manufacturer (Sony) and ask for the key in order to continue with the activation.

I will continue to update this thread hopefully helping others with same problem.

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Don't you have a sticker with the product key under you VAIO? Or did they change that with windows 8?

using Windows 8.1 on Acer iconia Tab W510

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Under my laptop I do have a sticker, but it only says "Windows 8" :-)

I don't have a sparkling sticker with the key, they use to have back in the day when you bought computers.

I will contact Sony tomorrow and ask how I can get the whole key for Microsoft.

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with windows 8 and newer version the Cert was done away with by microsoft if your machine was preinstalled with windows 8 the key is embedded in the bios .
 you should have recived and 8.1 product key if you used an upgrade or oem
 try here to see if you can get your product key

http://superuser.com/questions/496455/getting-windows-8-product-id-through-command-line
or search google for magic jelly bean or belarc key finder

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Try removing any product key by following the instructions at the bottom of the page here.

http://philipyip.wordpress.com/download-windows-8-1-iso/

i.e. remove any key from system properties using the slmgr.vbr /upk in an elevated command prompt and restart the computer to see if Windows 8.1 picks up the OEM SLP key and activates with it.

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So, the story continues.

I contacted Sony support, said that I updated my Windows 8 to Windows 8.1 via the Microsoft store, but now Microsoft says the key is invalid.

They replied with that I should have upgraded to Windows 8.1 via their software VAIO care and the only option I had now was to do a factory reset, back to Windows 8 then upgrade to Windows 8.1.

So I went home, and started a factory reset of my VAIO when suddenly the reset wizard said "Unable to reset your PC. A required drive partition is missing.". So apparently, when I did the Windows 8.1 upgrade, it removed my recovery partition.

I contacted Sony support again and they said the only way I can recover my hidden partition, in order to do a factory reset, to get my Windows 8 back, was to recover my VAIO using my recovery dvds - I apparently should have created via the VAIOP care prior to the upgrade.

I told them I didn't do any. I didn't really expect that an Windows 8.1 upgrade through the Windows store would render my key invalid, so I asked them for my Windows 8 key so maybe Microsoft could validate my installation to Windows 8.1. They replied that I cannot get the Windows 8 key. So I asked them; how do I get a recovery dvd then if I didn't create one myself?

They replied: "Well of course, for 75 USD, we can send you one."..

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I did the same mistake and updated from Microsoft website and it gives me error as well to use a product key and when I tried to reset it gives error partition not found.

Solution.      turnoff vaio, press assist button, go to troubleshoot, select rescue disk option and then select recover C driver and it will format and install clean windows 8. then download belarc find your key and write it somewhere.

update again and use that key all done.

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I've got a similar issue with a Sony laptop.

I want to swap my hdd for a ssd but I don't have a windows 8 oem iso to allow me to reinstall.

I have a windows 8.1 iso but that doesnt work with a windows 8 key (I got the key using Belarc if that helps anyone).

I think this is pretty poor from Microsoft - I prefer to buy genuine software but I resent having to buy another licencence for something I already have paid for. Does microsoft seriously expect me to upgrade to windows 9 when you cant make simple hardware changes?

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Hi Peter,

When you make a significant hardware change such as upgrading the hard disk, you might be required to activate Windows again.

You can download and install Windows 8 from this page using just your Windows 8 product key. You can then create an ISO file.

Upgrade Windows with only a product key

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-AU/windows-8/upgrade-product-key-only

You can refer to this article to create an ISO file.

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-AU/windows-8/create-reset-refresh-media

(Also, applies to Windows 8).

You can then upgrade to Windows 8.1

Hope this helps.

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