Can NTLite disable the Win8.1 Blue Screen of ... Activation?

pmikep

Active Member
I recently updated/"refreshed" a version of Win8.1 Pro that I'm testing. Since then Win8.1 now shows a Blue Screen about two or three times a way, nagging me to Activate. (It hasn't been 30 days yet and I like to wait until I'm sure I have done everything correctly before I activate.)

I have NTLite set to "disable" automatic Activation. But I can't find a Setting to disable this Blue Screen.

Is there one?

P.S. AFAIK, the only difference between the previous version of Win8.1 that I've been testing (that didn't nag me with a Blue Screen) and this one (that does nag me) is that I slipped in later Windows updates to the .wim before refreshing. Is a KB causing this new behavior?
 

Taosd

Active Member
It is a notification to activate , i don't think there is a way to 'deactivate' it unless you actually activate it.

Also as a side note, i don't know if you are aware , but windows 8.1 EOL (end of life) date was January 10th 2023.

When Windows 8.1 reaches its end of life, Microsoft will no longer release software updates. This includes security updates, non-security updates, and updates to fix bugs or glitches.

Also, technical support will become unavailable. Microsoft will stop updating online technical content and Microsoft 365 apps will no longer be supported on your Windows 8.1 computer.

So to answer the main issue, i doubt if there is a way to stop the notification from reminding you, unless there is a reg thingy somewhere.
 

pmikep

Active Member
Tnx. Yes, I know about the EOL. (Which, philosophically, makes me wonder if "activate" a dead OS has any meaning?)

I'm still wondering "What changed" from my previous install vs this one, that the nag screen appears now. (Am guessing a KB.)
 

Hellbovine

Well-Known Member
Is a KB causing this new behavior?
This is almost assuredly the cause, as this is behavior that Microsoft has done for many years now whenever a new OS gets released and/or an old one reaches EOL, they start pushing new notifications.

Try using a regcompare tool and click "activate later" or whatever the option is, and capture the reg key. Sometimes it's as simple as a key that toggles a 0 or 1 and the notification is gone forever, then you can integrate that into your image, but in some cases it may require a secondary key which toggles how often to nag the user again in the future (i.e. every 3 days).

The point of activation is that it is both DRM and telemetry for Microsoft. It's a way to make sure you paid for the software, and then also Microsoft gets all of your computer specs and whatever else they want phoned back to them so they can use it for product development, and to sell to 3rd parties. They don't care if a product is already EOL, they still want people to activate. In some operating systems, not activating Windows will lead to reduced features until it's activated.
 

Clanger

Moderator
Staff member
This is almost assuredly the cause, as this is behavior that Microsoft has done for many years now whenever a new OS gets released and/or an old one reaches EOL, they start pushing new notifications
they did it on w7 and that was easily silenced. i expected 8.1 "EOL bom-s".
ive had the 3 days to activate warning before, not a biggy.
 

Hellbovine

Well-Known Member
I did some research on this today. It sounds like pmikep is talking about this screenshot:
https://i.ibb.co/SKL8ddP/EOL.webp

Because Windows 8.1 has reached EOL, one of the final updates it received now makes this reminder appear constantly until the user clicks the "Pause reminders for three months" button. OP wants to find a way to disable this entirely, instead of it popping up again every 3 months.

After some Googling it looks like what has happened is there are now 2 scheduled tasks added to W8.1 which do the nagging. If those tasks are disabled it should stop the notifications from ever appearing. NTLite can disable scheduled tasks nowadays, so it's probably already possible to disable this notification now. It can probably also be done via reg keys too, but you'd want to disable these tasks either way, so this is the place to start.

Check scheduled tasks for Microsoft > Windows > Setup > EOSNotify then disable all of them.
 

Kasual

Well-Known Member
I did some research on this today. It sounds like pmikep is talking about this screenshot:
https://i.ibb.co/SKL8ddP/EOL.webp

Because Windows 8.1 has reached EOL, one of the final updates it received now makes this reminder appear constantly until the user clicks the "Pause reminders for three months" button. OP wants to find a way to disable this entirely, instead of it popping up again every 3 months.
Do you have the KB# nag screen update?
We need to avoid the integration if we want to have win 8 nag free, same as Win 7.
 

Hellbovine

Well-Known Member
Do you have the KB# nag screen update?
No, but I did notice while Googling, that originally around July of 2022 is when it seems like the internet went crazy trying to find ways to disable the first round of notifications (that was a different notification, saying 8.1 is going to reach end of life next year).
 
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garlin

Moderator
Staff member
There isn't a separate 8.1 EOL "nag KB", it's integrated into the final rollup.

File information for update KB5022352:
"EOSNotify.exe","6.3.9600.20776","23-Dec-2022","23:05","500,736"​
"EOSNotify.exe","6.3.9600.20776","23-Dec-2022","22:33","482,816"​

nuhi can simply implement disable EOSNotify again for KB5022352.
 

Kasual

Well-Known Member
There isn't a separate 8.1 EOL "nag KB", it's integrated into the final rollup.

nuhi can simply implement disable EOSNotify again for KB5022352.

bugger update, nuhi can add it to components removal too, same as did in Windows 7.
 

Clanger

Moderator
Staff member
scheduled task on w7 if i remember correctly(i removed it before capture), been silent ever since.

bugger update, nuhi can add it to components removal too, same as did in Windows 7.
it will show up in 2 places then, Components and Settings - Scheduled Tasks.
 

pmikep

Active Member
I did some research on this today. It sounds like pmikep is talking about this screenshot:
https://i.ibb.co/SKL8ddP/EOL.webp
No, it's not the EOL screen that I'm talking about.

I did see that screen after Windows finished refreshing. But I clicked the "Pause reminder for three months" and it's gone for now. (Although it would be nice if NTLite could take it away forever.)

I will take a photo of the BSO Activation the next time it pops up and post it. I'm sure that it's a normal nag screen. It's just that I never saw it before with my previous Win8.1.
 

Hellbovine

Well-Known Member
A couple of thoughts on the topic to consider:

1) In my opinion, NTLite shouldn't be messing with activation tweaks, as it could be seen as a violation of the EULA (trying to bypass activation). That's my view, take it or leave it, I'm not here to argue about it. This is also more of a self-inflicted issue, because it's assumed everyone will activate their license in a timely manner.

2) It's too time consuming to download/install 8.1 on my machine and test the keys, as well as figuring out how NTLite tries to disable "automatic activation", but if you're adamant about trying to get rid of the notification screen, try the following reg tweaks together:
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\SoftwareProtectionPlatform\Activation]
"Manual"=dword:00000001
"NotificationDisabled"=dword:00000001

The following key may also be needed for the same registry path as above:
"ActivationInterval"=dword:00000000

The 4th key below probably ties into another scheduled task or service, which is how Windows actually follows through on the activation. I don't know the right way to edit this key without having a copy of 8.1 to test and research on. Also note that it is a binary key, which makes things difficult:
"Schedule"

Note: I have not tested any of these keys, I found all of them by cross-referencing multiple Google solutions.

3) I'm guessing that NTLite probably sets the "Manual" key to "1" which I'm assuming makes it so that by just being connected to the internet Windows won't automatically activate, and instead it requires a manual activation by the user.
 
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garlin

Moderator
Staff member
If you're curious to how NTLite does tweaks, read the preset -- it's always the actual regedit...
<Tweak name="Activation\Manual">1</Tweak>

Don't over think it ;)
 

Hellbovine

Well-Known Member
If you're curious to how NTLite does tweaks, read the preset -- it's always the actual regedit...
<Tweak name="Activation\Manual">1</Tweak>

Don't over think it ;)
Yeah, I figured as much, I just didn't want to try the tweak on my W10 machine and assume it applies the same key that 8.1 needs. I like to do all my testing in a real environment to eliminate as many user-errors as possible. On that note, what I'm getting at is a question I have regarding this concept, and I made a new thread over here so it doesn't derail this one:
https://www.ntlite.com/community/index.php?threads/question-ntlite-methodology.3302/
 

garlin

Moderator
Staff member
To quote answers.microsoft.com:
I wasn't able to pinpoint the exact frequency with which this overlay appears, but it's certainly more than 5 hours and less than 7 hours, so I guess it appears every 6 hours.
or "about two or three times a way [sic]"
 

AeonX

Well-Known Member
What is the name of the ISO you use? If it's en_windows_8.1_pro_vl_with_update_x64_dvd_6050880.iso or something with "vl" in the name you can try with the retail ISO.

Retail ISO: en_windows_8.1_with_update_x64_dvd_6051480.iso

I noticed that when you use a volume version of Windows or use a KMS client key then Windows complains about activation more often and in less time. And in Windows 10 it doesn't allow changing Personalization in Settings before activating Windows whereas in the retail edition this is possible.
 

pmikep

Active Member
AeonX is correct. For this install, I set Volume License in ei.cfg.

Interestingly, the old way, I never saw the Blue Screen of Activation - ever.
 
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