How To Get Rid of Activate Windows

A watermark reading “Activate Windows” will display in the lower right corner of the screen if Windows 11 on the computer has not been activated. The watermark serves as a gentle nudge to consumers to go out and buy a licence key for the version of Windows 11 they have installed on their computers.

It’s understandable to wish to remove the Activate Windows watermark from your computer. To get rid of the watermark, Microsoft recommends purchasing a licence and activating Windows. That’s just fine, by the way.

How To Get Rid of Activate Windows

Understanding “Activate Windows”

Decoding the Message

“Activate Windows” is a notification from Microsoft that appears on your desktop when your Windows operating system is not activated with a valid product key. It’s a built-in feature to remind users to activate their copy of Windows to ensure they are using a genuine and licensed version.

The Importance of Activation

Activating Windows is essential because it unlocks the full potential of your operating system and grants you access to all its features and updates. An activated Windows copy also ensures you are in compliance with Microsoft’s licensing terms.

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Reasons Behind “Activate Windows”

1. Fresh Installation

  1. New Computer: When you purchase a new computer or laptop, it often comes with a pre-installed version of Windows. However, this pre-installed Windows might not be activated, and you need to activate it separately.
  2. Reinstallation: If you’ve recently reinstalled Windows or performed a clean install, you’ll need to activate it again, even if you had previously activated it.

2. Expired Activation

  1. Product Key Expiry: If your Windows product key has expired or your activation period has run out, the “Activate Windows” message will appear.

3. Hardware Changes

  1. Major Hardware Changes: If you make significant changes to your computer’s hardware, such as replacing the motherboard, Windows may require reactivation.

4. Unauthorized Copy

  1. Pirated or Unauthorized Copy: If you are using a pirated or unauthorized copy of Windows, you will encounter the “Activate Windows” message.

The Watermark “Activate Windows” Must Go!

So, the question becomes, how can I get rid of the Activate Windows watermark in Windows 11 without paying for it? If you’re reading this, it’s safe to assume that you’re in the same boat and have similar goals.

This article will show you how to remove the “Activate Windows” watermark in Windows 11 in two different ways. Consequently, let’s go right in:

1: Deactivate the Timer and Start Over

To open a command prompt, hit the Taskbar’s Search button and enter CMD. Simply type “command prompt” into a search engine and right-click “Run as administrator” when the prompt opens.

  1. If a UAC prompt displays, select Yes to proceed.
  2. To re-arm your sonic defences, open the Command Prompt and enter slmgr -rearm.
  3. You will need to restart your computer after you see the following message box. The watermark will disappear after this.

2: The Registry Exploit

To access the Registry editor, select the Search button from the Taskbar, enter “Regedit,” and then select it from the list of results.

  1. If a UAC prompt displays, select Yes to proceed.
  2. To modify this setting, open Registry Editor and go to the following key:


  1. In the right pane, locate the Start DWORD (32-bit) Value and enter 4 into its Value data field.
  2. Then, exit Registry Editor and open a Command prompt as an administrator.
  3. The following command should be run after that:

gpupdate /force

  1. Finally, you can apply the modifications by restarting your computer.

With this tweak to the registry, the Activate Windows watermark will no longer be displayed.

3: Command for Test Mode Use

Some Windows users have reported success in erasing watermarks by using the command typically used to disable testing mode. Which is why you should give it a shot yourself.

  1. To use this technique, open a Command prompt with administrative privileges and enter the following command: bcdedit -set TESTSIGNING OFF and press the enter key.
  2. When you’re done, restart your computer for the modifications to take effect.

Removing “Activate Windows”

1. Activate Windows

  1. Enter Product Key: The most straightforward method is to enter a valid product key to activate Windows. You can do this by going to “Settings” > “Update & Security” > “Activation” and clicking on “Change product key.”
  2. Online Activation: If you have a genuine product key, you can activate Windows online. Follow the on-screen instructions and enter the product key when prompted.

2. Troubleshoot Activation

  1. Activation Troubleshooter: Windows provides an activation troubleshooter that can help resolve activation issues. Go to “Settings” > “Update & Security” > “Activation” and click on “Troubleshoot.”

3. Contact Microsoft Support

  1. Customer Support: If you encounter activation issues that you can’t resolve on your own, you can contact Microsoft Support for assistance. They can guide you through the activation process and help troubleshoot any issues.

4. Purchase a Genuine Copy

  1. Buy a Windows License: If you are using an unauthorized copy of Windows, consider purchasing a legitimate license. This will not only remove the “Activate Windows” message but also ensure you have a legal and fully functional operating system.

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“Activate Windows” is a reminder from Microsoft to ensure your operating system is genuine and properly licensed. While it may seem like a nuisance, activation is a necessary step to access all the features and benefits of Windows.

By understanding the reasons behind the message and following the steps outlined in this guide, you can quickly remove the “Activate Windows” notification and enjoy the full capabilities of your operating system.

So, whether you have a valid product key or need to purchase one, taking action will ensure a smooth and genuine Windows experience without interruptions.