Windows product activation system identification number is all dashes

Support for Windows XP has ended

Microsoft ended support for Windows XP on April 8, 2014. This change has affected your software updates and security options. Learn what this means for you and how to stay protected.

This article was previously published under Q322960
This article has been archived. It is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.
SYMPTOMS
When you try to activate your copy of Windows XP by telephone, Windows may generate an Installation ID that consists completely of dashes, and you cannot continue with activation.
CAUSE
This problem usually occurs when the combination of the product key that is used for installation and the channel of the media is not licensed or is incompatible with the current hardware.
RESOLUTION
To resolve this issue, repair your installation of Windows XP, and then activate the product. To do so, follow these steps:
  1. Insert the Windows XP CD into your computer's CD-ROM drive or DVD-ROM drive.
  2. Restart your computer. If you have to, change the BIOS settings to start from the CD-ROM drive or DVD-ROM drive, and then restart your computer again.
  3. At the Welcome to Setup page, press ENTER.
  4. Press F8 to accept the Licensing Agreement.
  5. Use the arrow keys to select the installation of Windows XP that you want to repair, and then press R to start the automatic repair process.
  6. When Setup is completed, activate Windows XP.
MORE INFORMATION
For more information about how to complete an in-place upgrade or repair ofWindows XP, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
315341 How to perform an in-place (reinstallation) upgrade of Windows XP
For more information about Microsoft product activation, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
302806 Description of Microsoft product activation
For more information about how to activate Windows XP, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
307890 How to activate Windows XP
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Article ID: 322960 - Last Review: 12/07/2015 11:05:39 - Revision: 2.0

Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, Microsoft Windows XP Professional

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