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KhawarPashaITApplicationSupportEng-3168 avatar image
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Downgrade Key: Windows Server 2019 Standard OEM License to Windows Server 2016 Standard

I purchased a OEM License from a reseller for Windows Server 2019 Standard since Microsoft is not selling license for Windows Server 2016. Now I need downgrade key for Win Svr 2016 std since my applications are running on it (evaluation).
Problem: reseller telling me to call Microsoft and downgrade key, Microsoft telling me that reseller will provide the downgrade key. I don't who to ask now. Please help!
(Being successful to talk a Microsoft Agent is also a big task since calls will cut abruptly.)

windows-server-2019
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Hi,
I would like to check if the issue has been fixed? If yes, please help accept answer. If you need any additional assistance, please feel free to feedback.
Best Regards,
Danny

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KhawarPashaITApplicationSupportEng-3168 avatar image
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KhawarPashaITApplicationSupportEng-3168 answered

Hi DragutinKrstaji-9179, Same happened to me. I had a terrible time calling Microsoft, waiting long, transferred from one department to another and at the end calls cut abruptly. Vendor tells me to check with Microsoft, and Microsoft tells me check with vendor. At the end one Microsoft guy listened to me carefully and replied properly.
The answer is, Microsoft does not provide downgrade key for OEM license purchased from re-sellers. If your OEM license came with hardware, there is a possibility of downgrade kit provided by the manufacturer. So I had to upgrade the server from Windows 2016 Standard to Windows 2019. The upgrade was smooth, all of the applications kept working fine. But yes, it is a risk, your applications may stop working.
It was a cheap tactic on vendor side to sell the license without telling that is not down gradable. There is a document which tells downgrade rights, but it is not as clear as I mentioned above after going through the experience. Good Luck

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DSPatrick avatar image
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DSPatrick answered KhawarPashaITApplicationSupportEng-3168 commented

You can also try calling the activation center.
https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/licensing/existing-customer/activation-centers
http://download.microsoft.com/download/6/8/9/68964284-864d-4a6d-aed9-f2c1f8f23e14/Downgrade_Rights.pdf


but the OEM should have handled this one.

--please don't forget to Accept as answer if the reply is helpful--





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Sir, I have been calling Activation Center multiple times, responses are like:
- Calls cut during conversation.
- Agents keep on transferring to different departments and during one of the transfer calls will cut.
- Your reseller should provide you downgrade key and media, while reseller replied twice in written to call Microsoft to get downgrade key.


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YuhanDeng-MSFT avatar image
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YuhanDeng-MSFT answered

Hi,
I would suggest that you contact Microsoft Customer Support and Services where more in-depth investigation can be done so that you would get a more satisfying explanation and solution to this issue. In addition, if the issue has been proved as system flaw, the consulting fee would be refund. You may find phone number for your region accordingly from the link below.
Global Customer Service phone numbers:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/13948/global-customer-service-phone-numbers

Thanks for your time.
Best regards,
Danny


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DSPatrick avatar image
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DSPatrick answered KhawarPashaITApplicationSupportEng-3168 commented

The only other option may be to start a case here with product support.
https://support.serviceshub.microsoft.com/supportforbusiness

--please don't forget to Accept as answer if the reply is helpful--


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Sir, support for business need 'Contract' or 'Subscription' while I have OEM license, am I not supposed to get a downgrade key without a contract while I already paid for the license..93521-ms-support.jpg


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ms-support.jpg (93.5 KiB)
YuhanDeng-MSFT avatar image
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YuhanDeng-MSFT answered YuhanDeng-MSFT commented

Hi,
Please try this link:
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/office365/servicedescriptions/office-365-platform-service-description/support
93533-image.png

Thanks for your time.
Best regards,
Danny


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image.png (28.5 KiB)
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Sir, this area is for open licenses. OEM licenses do not show up here.

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YuhanDeng-MSFT avatar image YuhanDeng-MSFT KhawarPashaITApplicationSupportEng-3168 ·

Hi,
In General, for OEM licenses Microsoft will not provide any media or keys to facilitate the downgrade.
Would you contact the reseller again and see if he could help?

Thanks for your understanding.
Best regards,
Danny


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cheong00 avatar image
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cheong00 answered cheong00 commented

If you buy your OEM license through Dell, HP or Lenovo, they do offer downgrade kit that can guide you through the process.

For others, in my experience they'll just tell you to activate the server with "another OEM key that you own for the server version that you're about to downgrade to", then when the activate fails you call the activation center as instructed by the activation wizard. After they verify you got the proper license (may need to email them the invoice and COA photo) for the correct server product with downgrade right, they'll help you activate.

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But evaluation can be activated with Open License?

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cheong00 avatar image cheong00 KhawarPashaITApplicationSupportEng-3168 ·

Yes. Any retail key but not those OEM ones.

The activation mechanism for OEM is always different even back in the days of Win98. OEM and retail keys/media won't mix.

In the old days VL and retail keys also are separate, but the activation for these 2 kinds of keys merged to allow switching KMS activation for both. OEM license follows the hardware the software sold with so KMS activation is never applicable.

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Btw, the vendor so just sell you OEM key violates licensing term, so in terms of licensing the license you pay money to buy is not proper. If government bodies such as Custom come to check your company for counterfeit / pirate software and see your invoice for OEM software don't have hardware item, there can be legal consequence.

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DragutinKrstaji-9179 avatar image
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DragutinKrstaji-9179 answered

Hello Khawar Pasha,

did you solve your problem with Downgrade Key?
I have the same problem so it would be helpful if you can give me some information.
I am trying to activate WS 2012 R2 standard, and I bought WS 2019. The key is not working. Also I have been calling Microsoft for weeks, they are keep refering me to my vendor, and vendor is pushing me back to Microsoft.

I would apriciate any info

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