Checking the activation status of your Windows 11 machine after a clean installation is usually a good idea, notably if you have an OEM licence connected to your laptop. You can make sure you have access to every feature of Windows 11 in this way.
Also, if you use a legal, active copy of Windows 11, you can be sure that you can use all of your computer’s features, including changing the way it looks. If you’re unsure whether your copy is activated, you can easily find out. In this article, I’ll explain how to go about doing that.
Checking your Windows activation status
First, verify that Windows 11 is activated as well as linked to your Microsoft account. Linking your Microsoft Account to your device’s Windows 11 licence is crucial. When you upgrade hardware, you can use the Activation Troubleshooter to reactivate Windows by linking your Microsoft account to your digital licence. Checking your activation status, you’ll first want to find out if your Windows 11 is activated and linked to your Microsoft account.
To check activation status in Windows 11, select the Start button, and then select Settings
System and then select Activation. Your activation status will be listed next to Activation.
Check activation status in Settings, You’ll see one of these activation status messages on the Activation page.
Activation helps verify that your copy of Windows is genuine and hasn’t been used on more devices than the Microsoft Software License Terms allow
It is essential that you link your Microsoft account to the Windows 11 license on your device. Linking your Microsoft account with your digital license enables you to reactivate Windows using the Activation troubleshooter whenever you make a significant hardware change.
You’ll see one of these activation status messages on the Activation page:
- Activation status
- Windows is activated
- Windows is activated with a digital license
- Windows is activated with a digital license linked to your Microsoft account
- Windows is not activated
Methods of activation
Depending on how you got your copy of Windows 11, you’ll need either a digital license or a 25-character product key to activate it. Without one of these, you won’t be able to activate your device.
- A digital license (called a digital entitlement in Windows 11) is a method of activation in Windows 11 that doesn’t require you to enter a product key.
- A product key is a 25-character code used to activate Windows. What you’ll see is PRODUCT KEY: XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX.
After determining which activation method you use, follow the steps in the corresponding Activate using a digital license or Activate using a product key. You will either need a digital licence or a 25-character product key to activate Windows 11, depending on how you obtained it. Users won’t be able to activate your device without one of them.
Upgrade your edition of Windows 11
You can also upgrade your Windows 11 Home edition to the Windows 11 Pro version using the product key, or you can upgrade via the Microsoft Store by purchasing Windows 11 through it.