How to upgrade Windows Server 2012 R2 evaluation version to full version
On a couple of occassions recently I’ve changed an 180 day Windows 2012 R2 evaluation server into a full production version. This is particularly useful if your evaluation has worked out well, but you don’t want to reinstall a new producation server from scratch.
In this post we’ll look at the steps required to turn the evaluation server into a production server.
Please note, this does not work for Domain Controllers running on an evaluation license.
On my test server below you can see I only have 2 days left.
If you try and enter the new product key from the System Control Panel you’ll receive an activation error like below.
Open an Administrative Command Prompt. Then run the command:
Slmgr.vbs /dlv is used for volume licensing, and this step is to gather information only. The/dlv switch displays detailed license information. As you can see below we are currently running the ServerStandardEval edition.
If you wanted to continue using the trial for another 180 days, your could use the /rearmswitch.
From the Administrative Command Prompt, run the command:
dism /online /get-currentedition
This will confirm the information we obtained from slmgr.vbs /dlv, as you can see the current version is ServerStandardEval.
Next, run the command:
dism /online /get-targeteditions
This will show you which versions the current evaluation license can be upgraded to, in our case it can be upgraded to ServerStandard or ServerDatacenter.
Next run the command:
dism /online /set-edition:ServerStandard /ProductKey:xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx /AcceptEula
This command selects the version of Windows 2012 R2 you want to upgrade to, specifies the product key and Accepts the Eula.
Once the process has completed it will prompt you to restart your computer.
The process will reboot the server twice.
Once completed and logged in you can see in the bottom right hand corner that the server is no longer running and evaluation version. Also on my test server I received an Shutdown Event Tracker.