Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Automatic Activation for Hyper-V VMs

When you use Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter Edition as the host operating system for Hyper-V, you can implement an unlimited number of virtual machines using that same license. This means that you can buy a single Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter Edition license for a single physical server and run an unlimited number of guests using Windows Server 2012 R2 as the operating system.

If you have multiple Hyper-V hosts, it can be a pain to keep track of the Windows Server 2012 R2 keys for the guest VMs. Instead of using typical activation methods, you can use Automatic Virtual Machine Activation (AVMA).

AVMA activates a guest VM against the Hyper-V host instead of typical Microsoft activation methods. This means that the VM can be completely isolated without access to the Internet or other network and still be activated.

You can use AVMA guest VMs running:
  • Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials
  • Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard
  • Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter

For each guest operating system you enter in a generic AVMA license key. The generic license keys are:
  • Datacenter - Y4TGP-NPTV9-HTC2H-7MGQ3-DV4TW
  • Standard - DBGBW-NPF86-BJVTX-K3WKJ-MTB6V
  • Essentials - K2XGM-NMBT3-2R6Q8-WF2FK-P36R2
To enter the generic AVMA key, you can use any method that you typically use to enter a license key. During installation, you can use an unattend.xml file. After installation, you can run the following command:
slmgr /ipk AVMAlicensekey
To monitor AVMA licensing requests on the Hyper-V host, look for Event ID 12310. On the guest VMs look for Event ID 12309.

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