Disable Automatic Activation Feature in Windows 10 / 8 / 7

Windows Activation is a process that helps you to activate Windows and verify that your copy of Windows is genuine and that it has not been used on more computers than the Microsoft Software License Terms allow.

Windows has different license states like:

  1. Licensed: You see this status after a successful activation.
  2. Initial Grace Period: This is the state after you have installed Windows, but have not activated it. You will be reminded to activate, or Windows will attempt to activate it online automatically.
  3. Additional Grace Period: If major hardware changes are made to your computer, Windows may prompt you to reactivate Windows.
  4. Notification Period: Once the grace period expires, you will see a message that Activation is required.
  5. Non-Genuine Grace Period: You may see this after Windows Genuine Advantage has determined that your Windows copy is not genuine.
  6. Unlicensed: This appears for unlicensed copies.

The Automatic Activation feature has been included by Microsoft in the Windows operating systems to make it easier for the user to get his copy of Windows activated conveniently. But for some reason, if you wish, you can disable the feature, by editing the Windows Registry.

Disable Auto Activation feature in Windows 7 / 8 / 10

This article will tell you how disable the Auto-activation feature in Windows 10 / 8 / 7 and Windows Vista. If you do not wish to have the auto-activation wizard bother you, you may choose to disable automatic activation. To do so in Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10 open regedit and navigate to the following key:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\WindowsNT\CurrentVersion \SoftwareProtectionPlatform\Activation

In the right pane of the registry editor, you will find REG_DWORD value ‘Manual’. Right-click on it and select Modify. In the Value Data window which appears, change the DWORD value to 1.

The default is 0 which means auto-activation is enabled. Changing the value to 1 will disable auto-activation.

Close the Registry Editor and restart your system.

You will find that the Auto activation feature has now been disabled completely.

In Windows Vista however, the relevant key is:

HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\SL\Activation

Change the value of Manual to 1 to disable auto-activation in Windows Vista.

Remember to create a system restore point first!

If you are having problems activating Windows, you may want to read this post on Troubleshooting Windows Activation States. Check this post if you need to change Product Key in Windows 7 / 8. See this post, if you see This copy of Windows is not genuine message in the bottom right side of your black Windows desktop.

Note: Please read the comments. It is working for some, while not working for others. Based on comments, you may want to change value of NotificationDisabled to 1 and see if that helps.

Posted by on , in Category Windows with Tags
Anand Khanse aka HappyAndyK is an end-user Windows enthusiast, a Microsoft MVP in Windows, since 2006, and the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.
  • Holger

    is it possible to integrate this regtweak with rt7/win toolkit

  • Cayman

    It’s no use for newer Windows 8 version. It still shows Activation Windows notifications.

  • Sunilpwyd

    doesn’t work on windows 7. The value is already 1, and still i get a pop up every 5 minutes , telling me to activate windows

  • Sam

    Might have to change NotificationDisabled to 1 too

  • diagyx


  • Ron Wolpa

    THere is not such path on WINDOWS 8 : HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsNT>>>>>>>>CurrentVersion SoftwareProtectionPlatformActivation
    Any other suggestion to get rid of the activation blue screen that paralyzes the system ?

  • http://www.thewindowsclub.com Anand Khanse

    That path exists in Windows 8. I reconfirmed.

  • Kiya Warrior

    Okay I edited them both to 1. manual and the one beneath it, lets see what happens.

  • Kareem Ahmad Moye

    Yes, the path does exist. I just tried it out. Thanks Anand!

  • Naser Mohd Baig

    Thanks Anand. But how can I disable activation countdown. The count down on my system has been reset to 30 days but it keeps on decreasing day by day. I see another DWORD entry named ” Activation Interval” in registry. Any idea how to tweak it?

  • http://www.thewindowsclub.com Anand Khanse

    It will only disable automatic activation, not stop the countdown. 😉 You will have to then activate it manually.

  • Naser Mohd Baig

    What if we use slmgr -rearm command?

    and by manually activating, do you mean I need to purchase a key?

  • http://www.thewindowsclub.com Anand Khanse

    Cheers Always Mate!

  • Sta8is

    It worked! The stupid message was on-screen, I followed the steps, restarted and it’s gone! Thanks SO MUCH!!

  • nwachrist

    how manually activate Window 7 Ultimate

  • james 86

    I’ve had windows 7 for 5 years. After a repair I’m seeing active within 10 days. I only make out the last 15 numbers. Is there a phone number?

  • http://www.thewindowsclub.com Anand Khanse

    You can always use the Product Activation Wizard and use the Activate by phone or Contact customer support for. See http://www.thewindowsclub.com/how-to-activate-windows-7 and http://www.thewindowsclub.com/fix-windows-activation-fails-windows-failed-activate.

  • mastema

    does this also allow desktop images to be used and not reset to a black screen?

  • Ratha

    not working, it just for a short moment then will appear again…

  • Arkayne

    Not a good fix for the windows vista home basic. I followed this step by step and was locked out of my computer and had to call microsoft to get a new activation key. The activation window continued to pop up after this “fix” was applied. Yeah, you almost “fixed” me.

  • Err500

    win 8 update fix.reg

    open notepad paste
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindows NTCurrentVersionSoftwareProtectionPlatformActivation]

    then save as win 8 update fix.reg

    change save as type to all files
    then run it -_-

  • orator

    try a downloadable key finder program like magical jellybean and you should be able to find your correct serial key from within your system. also finds windows office keys and such.

  • quang lac

    it doesn’t work in window 7. The window activation wizard still appears.

  • TEC

    Why didn’t you direct us to change “NotificationDisabled” to 1 also. The article is misleading. Luckily, I was anle clearly see this very important detail it for myself…

  • ThiVas

    IT WORKED ON 8.1 PRO! Trying to deal with my cracked windows for weeks now. Fail to activate with KMS or find a key so I focused on removing the messages. I don’t remember how I delt with the watermark but this one helped me with the message notification. Thanks!

  • Alexis Von

    goodmorning my os is fake my screen turn to black,..what im going to do???pls help me sir

  • Alexis Von

    please sir anandneed you help

  • http://www.thewindowsclub.com Anand Khanse
  • John

    I activated Windows 8 using KMSAuto Net, he stands automatic reactivation, if you fly off the old, the way they can be activated and Microsoft Office is probably the best activator that I’ve seen. As well they can be activated and the earlier version of Windows. Who needs the link below

    The password for the archive: 1234

    Here is the link: http://bit.ly/1wV4rzL

  • Matt

    Also, to temporarily disable it in the cmd type (pressing enter after every line)
    @echo off
    taskkill /F /IM explorer.exe

  • Matt

    Also, to temporarily disable it, in the cmd type (pressing enter after every line):
    @echo off
    taskkill /F /IM explorer.exe

  • Uldis Hofmanis

    exelent, it works on my Windows 10 Pro – thanx !!!

  • vladamir

    This article is BS. The HEADLINE refers to Windows 10 but, no where in it does it refers to steps to follow for Windows to. It reads “To do so in Windows 7 and Windows 8, open regedit and navigate to the following key:….”. Then, “In Windows Vista however, the relevant key is:….” No where else does it refer to Windows 10.

  • http://www.thewindowsclub.com Anand Khanse

    The process is same for Windows 10/8/7. The article is old, but updated to indicate that it applies to Windows 10 too. I expected you to understand that.

  • Aboiteau

    Tried both registry steps with a good copy of windows 10 and it doesn’t work.

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