Problems with WGA (Windows Genuine Advantage)

Recently a customer of mine was experiencing problems with WGA under Windows XP with SP3.  Upon boot-up and login WGA some of the PCs would state that the Windows installation was not legitimate.  This was odd as I had recently reinstalled Windows XP on these machines with the correct volume license key.

Comparing the actual product key (using Belarc Advisor) I found that it differed from what it was supposed to be… very odd.  So how to remedy this?  Here we go:

Step 1:

  • Start | Run | regedit
  • Go to: HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\Current Version\WPAEvents
  • Right-click OOBETimer and choose Modify
  • Change at least 1 digit of this code

Step 2:

  • Start | Run | %systemroot%\system32\oobe\msoobe.exe /a
  • This runs the activation wizard.  Choose Yes I want to telephone… and hit Next
  • Choose Change product key
  • I entered the correct product key and hit Update
  • Choose Remind me later

I think a restart was then required… can’t quite remember.

I read somewhere online that if Step 2 gives trouble then you should restart, hit F8 and choose Last Known Good Configuration.  I didn’t have to do this so I can’t vouch for this.

This did the trick for me, I hope it works for you.


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