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Changing the Product ID on Windows 2003 Server Standard Edition

How do I change the Microsoft Product ID on Windows 2003 Server Standard Edition? I have legal licenses for all the boxes but I am doing syspreps/ghost to build new servers. I want the legal code on the boxes.

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Microsoft has a Knowledge Base article that talks about this process in detail. The most common way is to use a volume license key with the key information in the SYSPREP answer file. Some volume-licensed editions of Windows Server 2003 sold through a retailer (such as Dell) have a "Pre-activated" option available in SYSPREP that can be used in such a situation.

This was first published in August 2006

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