Windows has "Expired" / Surface 3 Won't Start

Discussion in 'Surface 3 (Atom)' started by RichBrownsDesk, Sep 26, 2016.

  1. RichBrownsDesk

    RichBrownsDesk Member

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    My Device:
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    I upgraded several months ago from my Surface 3 to the Surface Pro 4, but I donated the S3 to the nonprofit where I work. Now it's come to my attention that when we try to boot it up, it takes us to a screen that says our version of Windows has 'expired' and that we need to use a recovery USB to boot it up. I tried to boot through a USB but nothing changes....it still brings up the message that Windows has expired and to try to boot with a flashable USB. First, I don't know how Windows could "expire," since I never pirated any version of Windows. I had W8 and then when they offered the free upgrade to W10, I did it. More importantly, is there a way to get past this Catch 22?
     
  2. kundas1

    kundas1 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    sounds like someone tried to play with the registry or played with something... only thing I can suggest is to try and restore to factory... there is a bunch of video's on youtube that explains in detail how to do this...
     
  3. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Making recovery USBs is a little finicky ...
    To improve your chances...
    Remove any micro SD cards.
    Use Diskpart to "clean" the USB first then format it Fat32, mark Active.
    Expand all the files from the Zip file to a folder on a local disk then copy and verify to the USB.

    If it doesn't boot off the USB there's still a problem, try a different USB. It took me several tries before I got this to work the first time. I wish Microsoft would make a Recovery Drive Creation Tool for putting the downloadable image to USB that verified everything was correct.

    Alternatively you might use the Media Creation Tool to make a W10 bootable install USB . The tool is a more reliable way of creating the USB and it has a verify option I highly recommend.
    In the tool select 64 bit only when creating it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2016

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