Mastering KMS Licensing: Insights on Windows Server 2022 Activation


Based on my understanding from Microsoft’s documentation, it seems that the KMS Host server requires the application of a KMS License Key from the M365 Volume License section, specifically the CSVLK. For instance, the license I am interested in is the “Windows Srv 2022 DataCtr/Std KMS,” which is obtained from the M365 licensing agreement page.

For registering a KMS client, it appears that the keys used are the KMS Client Activation Keys, also known as GVLK. If I were to license a VM running Server 2022 Standard, would I use the key “Windows Server 2022 Standard VDYBN-27WPP-V4HQT-9VMD4-VMK7H”?

I was under the assumption that KMS clients would utilize a license from the M365 licensing portal, but is that applicable only for MAK?

Additionally, is it necessary for the KMS Host to have distinct KMS Host Keys for each Windows version, such as Windows 10, Windows 11, etc., to monitor usage?

Thank you for your assistance.


When it comes to activating Windows Server 2022, the Key Management Service (KMS) plays a crucial role in the management of volume licensing. From your query, it’s clear that you’re seeking to understand the nuances of KMS activation for a Server 2022 OS environment.

KMS Host Server and CSVLK

Your understanding is correct that a KMS Host server necessitates the application of a KMS License Key, which is referred to as the CSVLK. This key is indeed part of the M365 Volume License section and is specific to your licensing agreement with Microsoft. For your Server 2022 deployment, the “Windows Srv 2022 DataCtr/Std KMS” license would be the appropriate CSVLK to use.

KMS Client Activation and GVLK

Regarding the registration of KMS clients, the keys employed are known as KMS Client Activation Keys or GVLKs. If you’re licensing a virtual machine (VM) running Server 2022 Standard, the key “Windows Server 2022 Standard VDYBN-27WPP-V4HQT-9VMD4-VMK7H” is indeed the correct GVLK to use for activation.


It’s a common misconception that KMS clients might use licenses directly from the M365 licensing portal. However, this is not the case for KMS activation. The licenses from the M365 portal are typically Multiple Activation Keys (MAK), which are used for a different activation scenario and are not interchangeable with GVLKs for KMS activation.

KMS Host Keys for Different Windows Versions

Lastly, the KMS Host does require different KMS Host Keys for each version of Windows it is going to activate. This is by design, as it allows Microsoft to track usage and activations across different versions and editions of Windows operating systems. So, for each version of Windows you wish to activate via KMS, such as Windows 10 or Windows 11, a corresponding KMS Host Key will be necessary.

In conclusion, your approach to KMS activation for Windows Server 2022 is on the right track. By understanding the distinction between CSVLK, GVLK, and MAK, as well as the requirement for version-specific KMS Host Keys, you can ensure a smooth and compliant activation process for your Server 2022 environment.

I hope this article provides clarity on the KMS activation process for Windows Server 2022. If you have any further questions or need additional assistance, feel free to ask.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Privacy Terms Contacts About Us