How Do I Change the Product Key in Windows?


Updating your product key is sometimes necessary to extend the use of your Windows system. For example, you may want to upgrade your Windows system to a full version after the free 30-day trial is done, or you might decide to change the version of Windows you have by changing the product key. To update your product key, first determine whether you already have an existing product key and whether your Windows system is activated -- in each case, changing the product key is slightly different.

Use a new product key to register or update your system.
(Courtesy of Microsoft)
Step 1

Right click on "Start" and choose "System" from the drop-down list.

Choose "System."
Image courtesy of Microsoft
Step 2

Click "Change product key" to open a dialogue box to input your new product key.

Go to the product key section.
Courtesy of Microsoft
Step 3

Type the product key into the box. The Windows system automatically activates the product key.

Enter the new key.
Courtesy of Microsoft

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Tips & Warnings

  • If you did not activate your Windows system the first time you used it, the option "Change product key" is not available in the Settings section, since there is no key to change. Therefore, you need to open a software license program provided by Windows called "slui.exe" in order to enter a product key for the first time. In the Modern UI, search for "Slui 3" or "slui.exe" and click to open a screen in which you can enter your new product key.
  • When you enter your product key, the hyphens are inserted for you automatically, To avoid errors, don't enter spaces.
  • You don't need a new product key to update Windows 8 to Windows 8.1; a free update is available in the Windows Store.
  • Since problems sometimes occur when updating operating systems, you should back up your files before upgrading Windows with a new product key.


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