I downloaded Windows Embedded Standard 2009 from my MSDN subscription and built a target image. I installed the image on an HP thin client.

The thin client says that I have and evaluation copy. How can I activate Windows and remove the "evaluation copy" text?

For example, I don't have access to the internet I would like build in target designer not evaluation copy.


According to this document, it does not need activation, but only to have the key entered:


If you set it up using a trial key (as I suspect is the real problem), you can change it to your MSDN key at an elevated command prompt using the following command:

slmgr.vbs /ipk New_Product_Key
  • Is it possible to enter a product key after the trial key has expired? It appears that an expired trial key prevents WES2009 from starting, but it's possible to access the file system by booting from a secondary bootable media. – Kyle Strand Jan 18 '16 at 18:32
  • 1
    Actually, I've asked that as a new question. – Kyle Strand Jan 18 '16 at 18:39
  • 1
    I don't seem to have a file called slmgr.vbs anywhere on the system. Is it in an optional component? If so, what is the component called? I don't see any components with "license" or "slmgr" in their names. – Kyle Strand Jan 22 '16 at 18:21
  • This is incorrect. slmgr.vbs is not present before Windows Vista – tabdiukov Aug 6 '20 at 23:13

This Microsoft post contains two VBS scripts for activating Windows XP. The former one, originally designed for Windows XP SP1 and earlier, found to be compatible with Windows POSReady 2009. That is, ChangeVLKey2600.vbs,

' WMI Script - ChangeVLKey.vbs
' This script changes the product key on the computer


if Wscript.arguments.count<1 then
   Wscript.echo "Script can't run without VolumeProductKey argument"
   Wscript.echo "Correct usage: Cscript ChangeVLKey.vbs ABCDE-FGHIJ-KLMNO-PRSTU-WYQZX"
end if

VOL_PROD_KEY = Wscript.arguments.Item(0)
VOL_PROD_KEY = Replace(VOL_PROD_KEY,"-","") 'remove hyphens if any
Dim WshShell
Set WshShell = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
WshShell.RegDelete "HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\WPAEvents\OOBETimer" 'delete OOBETimer registry value
for each Obj in GetObject("winmgmts:{impersonationLevel=impersonate}").InstancesOf ("win32_WindowsProductActivation")

   result = Obj.SetProductKey (VOL_PROD_KEY)

   if err <> 0 then
      WScript.Echo Err.Description, "0x" & Hex(Err.Number)
   end if


Just run the script and provide it with a valid POSReady 2009 key. From here, for example. Then reboot the machine and the timebomb should disappear


You cannot use the Product Key that you used for installation of Windows Embedded Standard 2009. You have to enter the PID from the stickers that you get for putting on the target computers. Additionally to the license for Windows Embedded Standard 2009, you need a license for each target computer. Your distributor should be able to help you.

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