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Activation and COAs



The The "Product ID” (PID) is also known as an “Activation Key”. This 5X5 sequence of 25 numbers and letters (12345-12345-12345-12345-12345) is used to make the installed Microsoft product “Production ready”, otherwise the installation expires after 180 days. A single PID can be used for activating any number of different configurations and any number of systems, as long as the PID is for the same Windows Embedded part number.

 Windows Embedded Standard 7

To get the PID you’ll need to fill out a form (available through Avnet)  and email it to Microsoft. Microsoft will then send you a PID via email. The form requires the your CLA#  and the name of a Microsoft rep (contact your Avnet representative for this information and a copy of the form).

Once you get the response email with the PID, you can either pre-install it into the image using Image Configuration Editor or enter it into a system after it boots -when using the Install Build Wizard (IBW) disk, the PID is entered at first boot and persists beyond Sysprep. Within "Image Configuration Editor", the right place to insert it is in the "setup" feature pack below "Product Operating SystemFoundation CoreWindows Embedded EditionShell-Setupx86".
The setting is called "Product Key". Place the PID in there and re-create the unattended.xml file.

Windows Embedded Standard 2009 and XP Embedded

For these licenses, the PID is not printed on the COA (Certificate of Authenticity). For these products, a single PID is printed on a separate flyer that is enclosed in the runtime license envelope (which can contain 1, 10, 100 or 1000 COAs). There is just one PID per envelope and the Embedded OEM can enter this single PID number in the design tool to permanently unlock the Embedded image. The PID does not correspond with the number on the license stickers and any number of systems can share the same PID. Additional PIDs acquired from subsequent purchases of runtime licenses need not be utilized.

PID Card

Certificates of Authenticity (COA)s

The sticker that is delivered when the OEM purchases a runtime license is known as a “Certificate of Authenticity” (COA). This is the primary anti-piracy device, OEM product-tracking device, and proof of license for Microsoft OEM products.  The COA is a non-removable, sequentially numbered sticker with anti-piracy features that is to be permanently affixed to an accessible location on or within each Embedded System.
Embedded Systems distributed with Microsoft Embedded Licensed Products must have a COA attached. If attaching the COA is problematic, a waiver can be obtained from Microsoft allowing the COA to be accompanying the system (unattached).
It is the OEM customer’s responsibility to accurately reconcile total number of COAs received with the number of systems shipped with MS software. OEM customers and MS Distributors should maintain appropriate records regarding the disposition of all COA labels, including serial number tracking of any COAs damaged as part of the manufacturing process.

COA (actual size 8.74mm X 22.23mm)




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