My NI Activation Code Does Not Work

Updated Oct 24, 2023

Reported In


  • NI License Manager

Issue Details

This issue could occur in different situations:
  • I completed the activation process using my serial number and I did not receive an activation code.
  • After entering my serial number I receive an error that says that it was unable to connect to the Internet, even though I have Internet connection. 
  • After entering my serial number in the licensing wizard it asks me to try again, as shown in the image below, for my software.
  • I did receive a 20-digit activation code but my software remains in "Evaluation" or "Unlicensed".
  • I am trying to activate my software using a 20-digit activation code, but it says it is invalid or fails to activate my software.


The most direct way to determine what software is and isn't activated is to open up NI License Manager on your local machine and confirm that the icons in your Local Licenses tab are what you expect. You can activate and deactivate software from this page by right-clicking on any license entry.

Activation codes are generated based upon the combination of product, serial number, version, and computer ID, and will only work for the specified system. 

If you run into trouble using an activation code, ensure the correct information was entered into the licensing wizard. Verify:
  1. Computer ID  each computer generates a unique Computer ID. Activation codes from another computer will not work.
  2. Product - for example, LabVIEW and LabVIEW Remote Panels are not the same.
  3. Software Version - for example, LabVIEW 2012 Professional, LabVIEW 2012 Full, LabVIEW 2012 Professional SP1 will all require different activation codes.
  4. Serial Number - ensure that the serial number you enter is for the exact product you are activating.
    • If you found your serial number on packaging associated with a hardware purchase (DAQ, RIO, PXI, etc.) it is likely that it is the hardware serial number for those products and will not activate the software. Check the order and packaging associated with your software purchase for any additional serial numbers.
  5. License File - if you're serial number doesn't work you may require a new license file, please contact NI Support in this case.
  6. NI License Manager 3.7 or above installed. There are known issues with activation codes and serial numbers not working in versions of NI License Manager before 3.7. You can find NI License Manager in Windows by navigating to Start»All Programs»National Instruments»NI License ManagerThe current version is displayed at the top of the NI License Manager window. 
If your activation still fails and you have verified your information, you can contact NI.

Additional Information

Activation codes should be used only when necessary. Follow the preferred activation methods, depending on your licensing needs, as listed in Activating NI Software Products.