Activate Windows Now Error Message

Out of the blue, I suddenly received a pop up screen that asks me to "Activate Windows Now".  If I hit continue, another window pops up saying that "The Windows Vista Home Premium Key You Typed is Invalid" (I have not typed in any such premium key).  I have had this computer since 2/25/09, buying it from Dell, with the operating system already installed on it.  I have done all of the Windows Upgrades to it that were available and have not made any recent changes such as downloading or installing new programs.  I am not sure at all why this error message suddenly popped up (I have rebooted the computer to ensure it did not clear on its own).  As I purchased this from Dell, with the software loaded, I do not have an original Windows Vista CD/DVD to get any valid Product Code from.  I do have a DVD from Dell entitled "reinstallation dvd windows vista home premium 64bit sp1" that does have a bar code on it.  I am reluctant to run this "reinstallation dvd" not knowing what other problems might then pop up unless there seems to be no other alternative.


Anyone have any ideas?




Welcome to Microsoft Community and thank you for the post.


It looks like, you get pop up “Activate Windows Now” on your computer’s screen. When you try to activate the Operating system you get another error.


Let me ask you a question.


• Did you make any software changes to your computer?


You may be prompted to activate Windows Vista on a computer on which Windows Vista activation was not previously required. This problem may occur on a computer where Windows Vista was preinstalled by an OEM or by using a Volume Licensing installation.


Follow the steps given in the link given here.


Write to us if you feel any issues further. We will be happy to assist you.

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Question Info

Last updated June 16, 2020 Views 1,121 Applies to: