Using Windows 10 without activation

Discussion in 'Windows 10' started by redbug, Jul 28, 2015.

  1. redbug

    redbug MDL Junior Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    There are some peeps who, for various reasons, cannot activate Windows 10. They cannot afford to buy Windows 10, or are not eligible for a free upgrade, or don't want to or don't know how to employ dodgy methods of authentication. Would it be possible and practical for them to run Windows 10 without activating it? How does Windows 10 behave when it is not activated?

    I installed Windows 10 build 10240 in VirtualBox on 7/15/2015. Used an ISO that I created from an ESD file.
    10240.16384.150709-1700.th1_clientpro_ret_x64fre_en-us_9d40e15f430ab89a1eabb165acbf40c9f07d18bb.esd
    en_windows_10_pro_10240_x64_dvd.iso

    Here are some things I noticed:

    After a day or two, Personalization changes were disabled about 1/2 hour after booting. Changes could be made within 1/2 hour of booting, but were disabled thereafter. Any changes made to Personalization would be persistent. They would not be undone.
    When Personalization was disabled, it could be re-enabled by rebooting.
    After several days, Personalization would only be enabled for a few minutes after booting, not 1/2 hour.

    After a few days, I noticed that when the machine had been running for 5 or 6 hours, a watermark would appear on the lower right part of the screen. It would appear not only on the Desktop, but also on any windows whose area covered the lower right part of the screen.
    Rebooting would cause the watermark to disappear, until 5 or 6 hours later when it would re-appear.

    After a few days, I noticed some Universal Apps would not work. When I tried to open them, their window would flash briefly and then disappear.
    The following Universal seemed to work OK:
    Calendar, Contact Support, Cortana, Mail, Maps, Edge, OneDrive, OneNote, Xbox.
    Other Universal apps did not work.

    That is all I have noticed so far.
    I wish somebody else would try this experiment and report their findings.
     
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  2. redbug

    redbug MDL Junior Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    Thanks for your quick reply.
    No, I haven't gone with that, yet.
    It would still be good to know how the OS behaves when it is not activated.
     
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  3. MrMagic

    MrMagic MDL Guru

    Feb 13, 2012
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    There's no reason for anyone to not be genuinely activated, the Insiders program was running for a long time, all you had to do was join for free, install and activate one of those builds > upgrade to 10240
     
  4. TheCandyManHK

    TheCandyManHK MDL Addicted

    Jun 26, 2015
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    same like other windows better to activate ...
     
  5. rEApEAt

    rEApEAt MDL Senior Member

    Jan 5, 2011
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    Oh, dear... :rolleyes: redbug is not trying to activate Windows, he is trying to obtain a bit of knowledge. ;)
     
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  6. redbug

    redbug MDL Junior Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    There are reasons. I mentioned some of them in my original post. Some peeps didn't want to join the Insider program. Some peeps have several machines. Half the peeps in the world have an I.Q. at or below 100. Some users might not know how to activate. It would be useful to know what the penalities are for not activating, if those penalities are a mere inconvience or if they prevent one from using the OS unactivated.
     
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  7. Pointy

    Pointy MDL Junior Member

    May 11, 2015
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    Yes this is important information and we should find out all about how it behaves.
    yes he knows we can activate.
    this is for knowledge
     
  8. shtrumf

    shtrumf MDL Novice

    Sep 20, 2009
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    Thank you redbug for testing this un-activated state of Windows 10.i asked the same question 2 days(what happens or what are the nags of an un-activated copy of Windows 10 .as long as win 10 doesn't have nagging pop up windows or forces you to reboot every 2 hours its all good.Looking forward for more feedback from you. :thumbsup:
     
  9. redbug

    redbug MDL Junior Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    So far, it seems to me the penalties for not activating are merely an inconvenience. I don't need to change my Personalization settings everyday. Or, if I did, I could remember to do it soon after booting.
    I can live without some, or maybe, all the Universal Apps.
    The watermark is a nuisance, but I could live with that.
    It would be an advantage to MS if their OS was useable without activation.
     
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  10. shtrumf

    shtrumf MDL Novice

    Sep 20, 2009
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    i never used any of the modern apps,ass for "Personalization" i couldn't care less...That watermark, it appears on the desktop and on the windows opened?can you take a screenshot on how it looks on opened windows,i want to see how invasive it is.Another thing,for how long have you been running win 10 non activated.
     
  11. redbug

    redbug MDL Junior Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    I installed it on 7/15/2015. About 13 days.
    I booted it about 2 hours ago. So, it will be about another 4 hours until the watermark appears. I will post a screenshot then. The mark is semi-transparent.
     
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  12. redbug

    redbug MDL Junior Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    Window.JPG CloseUp.JPG FileManagerCloseUp.JPG NotePadCloseUp.JPG Here are the screen captures of the watermark.
    Previously, I think the watermark appeard about 5 or 6 hours after booting. Just now, it appeared about 4 hours after booting.
    Again, after rebooting, the watermark disappeared.
     
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  13. TONSCHUH

    TONSCHUH MDL Addicted

    Jun 11, 2012
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  14. redbug

    redbug MDL Junior Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    In a manner of speaking, you never have to activate. Nobody will force you to do it. I think the more interesting question is what happens when you don't activate it. That's what I'm trying to find out. You could help by installing it in VirtualBox and watching to see what happens as time goes on.
     
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  15. redbug

    redbug MDL Junior Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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  16. redbug

    redbug MDL Junior Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    #17 redbug, Jul 28, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2015
    (OP)
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  17. MrAnalysis

    MrAnalysis MDL Senior Member

    Aug 4, 2012
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    Just install Windows 7 activate via Daz loader and then update to Windows 10. Then fresh install.
     
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  18. redbug

    redbug MDL Junior Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    Thanks for the advice. I'll probably get around to activating via dodgy methods sometime later. BTW, I've been using Windows 7 for years, unactivated, by rearming the grace period, and by rearming the rearms every few months. In a sense, activation is against my religious Spaghetti Monster beliefs.
     
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  19. shtrumf

    shtrumf MDL Novice

    Sep 20, 2009
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    Thank you for posting the screenshots.Lets wait and see some official statement from MS about grace period or what are the downsides of running windows 10 without activating(ex:testing scenarios like VM's) .