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Updated: August 1, 2012

Applies To: Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows Vista

ProductKey specifies the product key to use for Windows activation.

Entering an invalid product key in the answer file will cause Windows Setup to fail.

If you are using a Volume License Multiple Activation Key (MAK), you must specify it in the ProductKey setting. If you preinstall Windows under a volume license agreement, consult your specific license agreement to determine the number of installations permitted per product key. For more information about product keys, see Work with Product Keys and Activation in the Windows® Assessment and Deployment Kit (Windows ADK) Technical Reference.



Specifies the Windows image to install during Windows Setup.


Specifies a Product Key to activate Windows. This setting can be used with Microsoft-Windows-Setup\UserData\ProductKey\Key. The two product keys can be different.



Specifies the key used to install and to activate Windows. Product_key is a 29-character string.

This string type does not support empty elements. Do not create an empty value for this setting.

For a list of the Windows editions and architectures that this component supports, see Microsoft-Windows-Shell-Setup.

The following XML output shows how to set the product key.


See Also