How to Solve Windows Activation Error 0x8007023E

Several users reported receiving an activation error 0x8007023E when they were trying to activate their Windows copy after a recent installation or upgrade of Windows. If you are one such user and are wondering what to do next, follow this post till the end. 

Upon encountering this error, you might receive an error message as well that reads the following – 

Windows is not activated
We can’t activate Windows on this device right now. You can try activating again later or go to the Store to buy genuine Windows.
Error code: 0x8007023E

Fix Activation Error 0x8007023E

What causes an activation error 0x8007023E in Windows?

If you are encountering an error 0x8007023E, check if your device meets the following conditions –

  • You’re not using a genuine product key
  • Network Problems or Server Outages
  • You have recently changed the hardware on your computer
  • You have installed the wrong edition of Windows on your PC

How to Fix Windows Activation Error 0x8007023E

To activate a copy of Windows 11/10, users must provide a genuine 25-digit product key. They obtain this key from the store from where they have purchased the Windows copy. If you have purchased a new laptop, you will receive the same through your retailer.

Since the Windows product key never expires, you may use the old keys as well to activate your device. The shortcut to this is by signing into your Microsoft account. There is a digital license associated with your official account. So, when you sign in to your account, the system uses that and activates your copy using that. 

Follow and apply the below fixes to overcome the activation error 0x8007023E on your Windows 11/10 PC –

1. Wait for some time and try again

Windows activation errors mostly occur when the related servers are down or are under maintenance. Wait for the next few hours and try again to activate your Windows normally. If you are using a genuine product key or a valid digital license, your copy of Windows will activate in no time. However, in case the error persists even after a long wait, attempt the below fixes one after another.

2. Reset your Network or Switch to a different network

The error 0x8007023E might also appear due to network problems. Several users have reported fixing this error code when they switched to some other network. If you are using some VPN or proxy on your PC, consider disabling them first, and see if the problem resolves this way. You may even reset your network by running the below codes on an elevated Command Prompt (Admin).

  • Reset your TCP/IP settings:

netsh winsock

  • Remove and re-add TCP/IP by overwriting registry keys: 

netsh int ip reset

  • Release the IP address that was associated with your router:

ipconfig /release 

  • Reconnect to the router to acquire a new IP address: 

ipconfig /renew

  • Purge any cached IP addresses and domain names: 

ipconfig /flushdns

Restart your PC and check if your Windows gets activated now. If not, consider switching to a different Internet Service Provider. 

3. Run Windows Activation troubleshooter

There’s an in-built tool on Windows that can search for the underlying causes preventing Windows activation. You may find this tool by navigating to Settings (Win + I) > System > Activation. Click to expand the Activation State, and hit on the Troubleshoot button. 

Troubleshoot Windows 11 Activation

The troubleshooter will launch next and start detecting the reasons behind the activation failure. Wait for this tool to complete its diagnosis. If there is some system error, the error 0x8007023E will resolve on its own. Otherwise, this tool will suggest ways that you may perform to overcome it on your Windows 11/10 PC. 

If you are encountering this error code on Windows 10, navigate to the below path to locate the Troubleshooter. The remaining steps would be similar to that of Windows 11. 

Settings > Update & Security > Activation

4. Check your Windows Edition 

Windows 11/10 is available in many editions such as Home, Pro, Enterprise, Student, and a few others. At times, Home users skip checking the edition and install either the Pro or Enterprise edition. If that’s the case, you must install Windows 11/10 Home Edition on your computer.

Note: Upgrading from Home to Pro doesn’t require performing a clean installation of Windows. 

  • Press Win + X and choose Terminal (Admin). Copy/paste “slmgr /dlv” near the blinking cursor and press Enter.
  • Windows Script Host will open next describing which edition is currently running on your computer.
  • If this says, CoreSingleLanguage edition next to Name, you are on the Home edition. Pro, Enterprise, and Student have their own descriptions. Now, check if you have the product key for the same or not. In most cases, you will find the product key belonging to the Home edition whereas the installed edition is Pro or Enterprise. 

Check your Windows Edition using SLMGR

  • In case your device is activated using the Organization’s on-site server, you need to contact your organization’s IT desk and ask for help. 

5. Download and Try Microsoft Support and Recovery Assistant

If the error 0x8007023E is still appearing, you may download and run Microsoft Support and Recovery Assistant from its official site. This file downloads as a zipped folder. So, you need to first unzip this folder, and double-click on SaraSetup.exe to begin Sara installation. 

SaRa is basically a desktop client designed especially for Microsoft users. This tool helps to troubleshoot and diagnose the underlying issues on your computer. In case it isn’t able to resolve a problem for you, it will suggest the subsequent steps to resolve an error code or problem. Using this tool, one can also get in touch with Microsoft Support, which we have discussed as the last resort. 

6. Contact Microsoft Support

If none of the above fixes address this activation error 0x8007023E and you do own a valid product key, get in touch with Microsoft Support. One may contact the Microsoft Support team directly or from the SaRa interface. Sometimes, the activation issues persist just because some server maintenance is going on. So, wait for ample time, and then contact Microsoft Support. 

The support team will ask you for the 25-digit product key during the activation process. So, keep your product key at hand and get in touch with them.

My Windows is not activated, What Can I do?

If your Windows PC is not activated, you will see the “Activate Windows watermark” on the right-bottom end of your display screen. Go to Settings > System > Activation on Windows 11, and click on Troubleshoot. This tool will check for possible causes behind the activation issue and resolve them (if possible). 

Troubleshooting will help only if you have made some hardware changes to your computer and are on the same edition for which you have the proper license. In case you have intentionally upgraded your edition from Home to Pro, go to System > Activation, and click to expand Upgrade your edition of Windows. Click on the Change button beside the Change product key, and provide a valid 25-digit key. 

Enter a Product Key

Can I use a single product key on more than one device?

No, you can’t use the same product key on more than one device. However, if your device gets corrupted somehow, and you go for a clean installation of Windows on it, you may re-use the same product key. In fact, if you had signed in to your Microsoft account previously, you need not use the product key. Your device will get activated on its own using the Digital License attached to your account.

How long can you use Windows without Activation?

Microsoft allows the use of Windows 10 for one month after installation without any restrictions. As soon as this one-month grace period expires, you are required to activate your copy with a genuine product key. If you fail to do so, you still be using Windows 11/10, but with limited features. 

One key disadvantage of using a non-activated Windows 11/10 is that you can’t change your desktop background. In addition to this, you will be getting an “Activate Windows watermark” on the bottom-right corner of your PC. 

Soni Aryan

Soni Aryan

Soni Kumari is a tech enthusiast known for her expertise in how-to type topics and Windows troubleshooting articles. She loves exploring how to do things or tweaks in Android, iPhone, and other operating systems.