How To Fix “We Can’t Activate Windows On This Device” Error

“Software is like entropy: It is difficult to grasp, weighs nothing, and obeys the Second Law of Thermodynamics; i.e., it always increases.”

— Norman Augustine

In the operating systems industry for personal computers(pc), Microsoft Windows, Linux, and Apple Mac OS are the three most common ones. The modern OS uses a Graphical User Interface (GUI) for PCs and Entertainment Business Developer’s Operating System.

It is essential for the computer as it is the main reason we can maneuver the mouse to click icons, menus, and buttons. All of the screens’ features are because of the GUI. It uses a combination of text and graphics for that.

Windows is a group of numerous Operating Systems developed by the Microsoft edition of Windows. Every new edition has a brand-new graphical user interface and many new features tested and operated by the technical masters throughout the year.

We want to get our hands on the latest windows because a new Operating System comes with many benefits and makes a person’s work easier than ever before.

You will encounter many technical issues that sometimes come along when we update or install something. When installing Windows 10 on our computer, we get an error 803F7001.

The notification being’ we can’t activate windows on this device,’ and then we panic because of obvious reasons because a little slip-up could result in costing us a lot of money. 

This situation has proven to be pretty frustrating and quite common these days. Operating systems are necessary for the computer to perform even the simplest functions.

The error code seems like the end of the world, but it’s not. Every problem comes with a solution, and the same goes with the ‘we can’t activate Windows 10 on this device’ error code 0x803F7001. 

If there are some basic technicalities or small issues on the computer, you can resolve them independently. There are other easy methods to fix any previous issues with the computer, which are mentioned below:

  1. Download the renowned Restoro PC repair tool or any other repair tool, if you have one already.
  2. And with a right-click, select start scan to search for the errors in Windows 10 on your computer.
  3. Then select repair all to resolve all the issues.

If it is not a minor issue and is persistent, you may have to venture deep into this. Everything here in this article can help to assist.

There are several reasons why you will find Windows 10 cannot be activated on your device:

Product key

The product key is a small utility that presents the Microsoft office’s product ID and the CD key. It may seem insignificant, but the product key is essential, and it needs to be valid.

Product key helps software developers ensure that every copy of their software has been legally purchased. If you have an invalid product key, it will cause you many problems.

You have to change it with a proper one for a genuine Windows 10, a suitable product key. It will help to activate Windows 10 quickly and without any difficulties. 

 The product key is not compatible

 Compatibility is important in relationships and while activating new editions of Windows programs on the computer. Windows 10 uses it’s the only rare product key that is specifically designed for it.

Windows 7, Windows 8, or 8.1 product keys cannot be compatible with it. Windows 10 has a specifically designed product key, which can be used, so if you have a fake one, you need to change the Product key.

Windows 10 has a specifically designed Windows key, and that is the particular one that can be used. The error code could be shown on the page when a different key is used in another Windows 10 version and they don’t match.

Make sure you use the correct product key designed for the particular version of Windows. 

Problem occurred due to external factors

When we get a computer repaired or rebuilt, we need to have a back-up. A different version of Windows 10 remains on our computer after the repair or rebuild.

It happens because a different key could have been used to rebuild or hardware changes in the computer, so the original key is blocked. It is not a sudden instance when the computer faces problems due to hardware changes. 

There are some rules for installing Windows 10 again after a crucial hardware repair. Because when Windows 10 is installed, its authentic Digital License links itself with the Operating System’s hardware of your computer.

It depends if the hardware has gone through some major changes or a minor one or if you need to update security activation.

If it is a significant change, like rebuilding the motherboard or changing it, Windows 10 may not find a license to match your computer.

To fix this issue, you need to activate Windows again to function properly. 

You also need to find out first if you already have Windows 10 initiated in the computer.

  • Right-click on the Start button and then select Settings.
  • Go to Settings Update & Security and click on Activation, and then you will be informed if Windows 10 is already there or not.

Product key license term violation

There is a particular number of times a product key can be used on computers. If the product key has been used on more computers than allowed, it may be why windows cannot be activated.

As Windows 10 is specifically licensed as a digital download or as a whole packaged product, you can buy it at a physical store. It happens because a licensing agreement is a signed contract between the licensor and the licensee.

The product key license terms permit the licensee to have rights to use and have the License over a particular brand name, trademark, or patented technology by the respective licensor.

If you cannot find your license key, then you can follow the steps below-

  • Press Windows key and X together simultaneously.
  • Then click on Command Prompt (Admin).

In the Command prompt, click on type’ wmic path SoftwareLicensingService’ then you get OA3xOriginalProductKey. This will present the Product key to you.

When you buy Windows 10 Product key and License from the Microsoft store, you will get a copy of the product key stored safely in your Microsoft Account. You will get an email as confirmation. Remember to check your spam folder as well. 

If you do not find it even after that, then log in to the Microsoft Store.

Visit your Downloads or Download history, and then you will find Product Keys.

Then click on the Subscription page, select the Digital Content tab, and now you can easily view all of your purchases in the past along with your Product key information and the details related to the product.

Pirated copy of Windows

we can't activate windows on this device

It is very essential to purchase the original copy of Windows. If you bought Windows from a certified seller, you do not need to worry about the product’s originality.

But that is not the case every time and sometimes you get an error after Windows 10 activation. Some shopkeepers have Windows that are activated with the help of some third-party software, which does not have an original but a duplicate Windows version.

You can distinguish among them based on the Product key details. There are three types of Product keys- Original Equipment Manufacturer(OEM), Retail key, and Volume Key.

OEM key comes with pre-installed Windows and is designed specifically for the manufacturer. It is legal and safe. OEM editions of the Windows installed in the computer cannot be transferred to any other device under any circumstances, it is only meant to be used by the manufacturers.

Retail keys can be accessed and activated many times, it is particularly used for retail builds of the product. It can also be transferred from one device to another and allows multiple activations.

It is costlier than the OEM because it can be used on several devices simultaneously. No need to worry, Microsoft supports it, and it is trustworthy.

Volume license key is mostly made for every scale of companies and institutes. It is a merge between OEM and Retail keys.

If you have a pirated copy of the Windows version or a fake copy, Microsoft will not be activated on your computer, and there will be an error. You can always post it on Microsoft’s ‘How to Tell’ website about your Windows’s credibility; if it is not the real deal, you need to buy a new copy of Windows.

You can find out if your Windows Retail key is original or fake. Go to your Windows search bar, type Command Prompt, and click on it.

Then type slmgr/xpr and press Enter.

Windows Script Host

 After that, if you see a message on the screen that says ‘Windows ® (Your Windows version): The machine is permanently activated.’ then your Product key is an authentic one, and that you need not change the product key.

Second-hand computer problems

There is always a controversial discussion on which is better: a low-cost but new pc or a branded but used pc. The low on cost computer may not have the best features but would work as new and reliable. The debate can go on according to the experiences and perspectives of the users.

But the used but branded could have a version of Windows, which has already been activated on more than one computer. And if that is the case, it will be blocked according to the Microsoft Software Licence terms.

You can avoid this by contacting your seller or a support person and asking for the original Windows installation disc and the Product key. If by any chance, it happens that they don’t have it or you cannot receive it, then you will have to buy a new copy of Windows from a trustworthy organization.

 Malware infection risk

Malware infection risk

This fishy and dangerous software can steal private information and spy on the user’s activities. It is quite dangerous and can cause many problems as it can also put your Online Banking activity at risk and lock your data, and then you will never be able to access it in the future.

You can know if your computer is infected with malware when it is slowing down your computer, unnecessary Ads pop up, or when your internet traffic increases suddenly out of nowhere, etc.

If you have a Malware infection, it could also be why Windows 10 would not initiate your computer.

Registration mistake or faulty System files

Regarding registration, even a small detail can cause misinformation or inaccuracy. The same could happen when there is even a small registry issue while handling Windows 10 activation. System files are essential, especially when we have to extract a file, and when they are missing or corrupt, it can be a problematic issue. That could also become why the activation of your edition of Windows 10 in the computer failed.

Issues in a Drive

Device installation settings

When it comes to technology, we should always use the latest version of everything if we can. Device drivers are an essential part of the computer because it carries out all the device’s small and big essential activities.

It helps various hardware components work in unison and smoothly with the computer. When the computer drivers are outdated, the computer can become slow and lag in performance.

Outdated systems or software can cause problems or be unfitting according to the computer, the system, and activation errors. An outdated driver can cause the error while initiating windows 10; it could also happen because of faulty and unsuitable drivers.

Can the Error Message “The Disk You Inserted Was Not Readable by This Computer” Cause the “We Can’t Activate Windows On This Device” Error?

If you’re encountering the error message “The Disk You Inserted Was Not Readable by This Computer” and also experiencing the “We Can’t Activate Windows On This Device” error, it’s possible that the unreadable disk is causing the activation issue. Try resolving the “how to fix unreadable disk” problem first to see if it resolves the Windows activation issue.

There are some simple steps that can fix activation errors without any trouble

winver run command

You must ensure that your device follows all the recent updates and is up to date. Later, in the taskbar, type ‘winter’ in the taskbar and click on it. That will help you know the version of the computer and other details about Windows.

Then you can use the Activation Troubleshooter to detect and fix the easy issues automatically.

If the problem remains the same, you should check the list of all the error codes below to see if the suggestions can be done quickly and follow up.

If this method proves ineffective, then these detailed steps will help.

  1. Type up the credentials of your real product key
  2. Then try installing the original Windows 10 again on the computer.
  3. After changing your hardware, initiate your Windows 10 again.
  4. Then, through the phone, activate Windows 10.
  5. You must run a full system scan on your computer, and carefully check for anything unusual.
  6. Install Windows 10 again.
  7. Then do a complete System Checkup.
  8. Then check for any errors in the drive and fix them manually.
  9. Purchase a new copy of Windows or a new product key.

Now come the details of these steps 

Type up the credentials of your real product key

Type up the credentials of your real product key

The solution below will only be suitable when Windows 10 has already been activated once before getting the computer rebuilt or repaired.

  • First, select on ‘Start’ and search for Setting, select on Update and Security in settings.
  • Click on Activation, and then under that, select Change Product Key.
  • Then put your original product key, wait for a while for the activation process to finish.
  • After the Activation, reboot/restart the computer.

Then try installing the original Windows 10 again on the computer

This process has proved to be quite useful. Install the original Windows again on the computer and then upgrade it to Windows 10. If this works out, you can initiate Windows 10 on your computer quickly.

After changing your hardware, initiate your Windows 10 again

If the computer has gone through an important hardware change sometime in the past, Windows 10 errors may occur. You can get your version of the Operating System back. You need to activate it again on your computer. You can follow the method below:

For any activity regarding Microsoft Operating Systems, you need to add your Microsoft account and link it to the digital license provided on your device.

  • Click on Start and the page search for Setting, in settings select on About. You get all the details there to move further. You need to make sure that you have Windows 10 or Windows 10 Pro(1607 or newer one).
  • While using the Administrator account, you must select the Start Button and go to the Start menu.
  • Select your account name, then click on Change account setting and find Administrator under the name of your account.
  • If you can find it, then it means that you are using an Administrator account and can move further.
  • But if you cannot find the word Administrator, it simply means that you have logged in from a Standard account, so log out from it and log in as an Administrator this time.
  • Then click on Update & Security, then find Activation to add an account.
  • Now carefully enter your Microsoft account and password. You may need to put your local account password and then Sign in.
  • Then you will be directed to the Activation page, so when you see ‘Windows is activated with a digital license linked to your Microsoft account’ on the screen, everything went well.

After that, you need to use Activation Troubleshooter.

  • Go to Start, Settings, and then find Update & Security.
  • Then under Activation, find Troubleshoot, then you have to click on ‘I changed hardware on this device recently.’
  • Type in your Microsoft account details and password. You may need to put your local account password and then Sign in.
  • Select the device you are using from the list, click on ‘This is the device I’m using right now,’ and then activate.

If these practical steps cannot solve your issues, then it could only mean that your Operating System is not eligible for reactivation due to the reasons below:

  • Your Windows significantly is not linked to the digital license.
  • No history of any Windows activated on your computer was found.
  • There is a limit to the reinitiation of Windows, and it seems you have already crossed it.
  • If an organization owns your computer, you are not permitted to reactivate it.

Then through the phone, activate Windows 10

Make sure not to go through this fix if your computer came with Windows 10 already installed because it would not work.

  • Press Windows key and R simultaneously and type ‘Slui 4’ in the Run box and Enter.
  • Choose your Country/Region from the details given in the list and select Next.

Then you will be provided with a toll-free phone number. You need to use this number to acquire your confirmation ID and then click on Activate.

Run a full system scan on your computer, carefully check for anything unusual

The mindless scan would not work. You must carefully pick out the unusual activities or threats on the computer. To start a full scan of your Operating System, you need to follow the steps below:

You need to make use of the inbuilt Windows Defender in the computer.

First, search for Settings and click on Update and Security.

Then you will find Windows Defender. After that, you need to open it and click on Full.

Note: You have to make sure that you are not using a fake or pirated Antivirus as well, or all of this will go into a drain.

You need to use your current Antivirus to detect any malware infection or threats and then fix them automatically or manually if needed.

After that, you can also use superior Anti-Malware Software like Norton, Malwarebytes, TotalAV, or any other you find accurate for future safety. 

Install Windows 10 again

Even after scanning for errors and threats in the computer, if the installation error remains, there might be something wrong while carrying out the Operating System procedure.

Then you should install Windows 10 on the computer again. This should be the solution. Again it would help if you made sure that the package is proper and the Product key is as well.

Then do a complete System Checkup

If reinstalling Windows 10 did not work, you should run a complete System Checkup as soon as you have installed it. A Registry key is essential as it contains all the settings, data, options, and information necessary for the Operating System to work.

Sometimes, the whole file folder is corrupt or missing some crucial files. The Windows 10 activation process’s failure could happen because of incorrect Registry entries, incomplete Registry keys, or System files that have been damaged.

So you will need to have a whole System Checkup to find the root cause of the problems and fix it after finding it. You can either do it while manually investigating the suspected areas individually, one by one.

You can also take assistance from other professional tools like Registry cleaner Pro, Disk Defrag Ultimate, or similar, according to your convenience.

The professional tool will help you automatically inspect your system and fix anything that hinders the Operating System’s smooth performance in the computer.

Then check for any errors in the drive and fix it manually

A device driver is an essential thing for the Computer program. It operates and regulates the device functions frequently attached to the computer.

Device drivers must be handled carefully because they often contain bugs or malicious malware. Sometimes it could be because of the problematic Hardware device, another problem. Here to fix your driver, you need to check it manually and fix it.

You can use the activation Troubleshooter one by one manually.

Press Windows key and X together and then go to device manager under that, you will see an option ‘Update your drivers’ click on it.

And if you cannot troubleshoot them manually, we can also help with a professional tool that will get the work done quickly. There are many good driver Update Software that could help you with security updates or better the computer’s functioning.

Purchase a new copy of Windows or a new product key

If none of these fixes are useful, then you have no choice but to purchase a new Product key or a new Windows 10 from Microsoft. This time you need to ensure everything you purchase is original and authentic.

Since all of these methods did not fix the problem, it could probably mean that your Product key was already used or your Windows existed on more computers than the Microsoft Licence Policy allows you to keep.