I recently ran into a little problem where I had installed Server 2008 Standard Edition and passed the server off to the Middleware guys to do their thing. I later found out that the license for this server was for Enterprise Edition, but much of the work had already been done from a middleware perspective. This led me to wonder if it was possible to change the edition of Windows Server after installing. The answer is a resounding “YES!” and it’s actually quite simple. Check out the steps below:
- Grab the default KMS key for the edition you installed from the chart at this page and enter it as your activation key.
- Attempt to activate with this key. It will fail with error code 0XC004F074, but this is expected behavior.
- Open a command prompt and run the following command, where the product key is the KMS key for the edition you want to change to. The second command can be run to determine the edition ID.
- DISM /online /Set-Edition:<edition ID> /ProductKey:XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX
- DISM /online /Get-TargetEditions
- After running the command successfully, reboot.
- Enter a valid product key for the new version and activate!
A couple of quick notes:
- This seems to be an “upgrade.” As such, I’m not sure you can go the other way (e.g. Enterprise -> Standard)
- This is irreversible, so be sure this is what you want to do.
- This can’t be done on a domain controller. In this situation, you could spin up a new one with the correct edition and transfer the FSMO roles, anyway.
Hopefully this helps you navigate this sticky situation without a headache!