Activate Subscription Grayed Out

I tired to upgrade my XG firewall from version 17 to 18.  After the upgrade the server would not boot up again with various file system errors.  I decided to put a new hard drive in the same server and reinstall the firewall.  I then restored from the latest backup.  Everything works but apparently the license keys are not stored in the backup.  When I go to Activate my subscription the button is grayed out.  Sophos seems at a loss to help me with something so basic.  Has anyone else come across this and found a fix to activating your subscription after a reinstall?  Thanks.

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[edited by: emmosophos at 11:02 PM (GMT -7) on 16 Sep 2021]
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  • Experience. I know, that you cannot activate a license on a not "sold" appliance. The status "eval" on base license basically means, the appliance is not sold from a Sophos perspective. Therefore there was a mix up in the sales process or the customer got a Proof of concept appliance and the appliance was not sold to the customer in that term. 


  • This is not an appliance it is our own hardware.  We purchase Sophos software to install on our hardware.  I need this server activated and you are right it doesn't have a base license. I don't know how you knew but that is what Sophos told me as well but they can't figure out their own licensing.

  • You need to purchase the base license (for your appliance) as well as the subscription. The base license will be activated until year 2999 - So its yours for ever, but this one time purchase needs to be done first. 

    Most likely customer purchase a bundle (Subscription + base license) but i assume, this was not the case in your purchase? Or do you have a base license on another serial number? If you check your license schedule, do you see a serial number on it? 

    If yes, you need to perform a license transfer: It will transfer the purchase base license to your current serial number. 


  • I don't own a Sophos Appliance. I use my own hardware for 4 firewalls and just buy their software.  My old server crashed while doing an upgrade so I reinstalled and restored from backup.  I just spent over an hour on the phone with Sophos Tech support going through 3 different people and they can't figure it out.  They will investigate and get back to me.  So frustrating!

  • In the World of Sophos, everything is bound to a serialnumber. So the serial number is your license. If you have 4 different firewalls, they should have 4 different serial numbers. Therefore you should have 4 different licenses. 

    If you start a wizard setup, it will activate a trial on a new serialnumber (it is a option there to do it). If you did this, the trial is started and the appliance expects a new base license to be applied to it. As you do not have a new serial number, but like to use the old one, you can transfer in mySophos (see link above) to the new serial.

    Check the mySophos, if you can locate the serial numbers you are using with your valid licenes, if you had one.


  • Thank you for all the help.  Unbelievable it took 4 days to get this solved and LuCar Toni you know more than Sophos Licensing team on how to fix something like this.  Next time I have an issue I will just message you directly.  I will be happy to pay you for your time when my system is down as I have zero faith now in Tech Support.

  • The advantage of a community is, everybody can read and reply to your questions, Therefore if somebody sees a issue, he saw before, it is way more easier to get this sorted out. I usually recommend to ask general questions like this in the community and get troubleshooting done in the Support section. I am not able and willing to give support in a 1:1 basis. 


  • I completely agree with you that having a community to respond is very efficient and helpful but when I have a simple licensing issue that takes 4 days to resolve that is not OK especially when I am paying for support.  God forbid my entire firewall was down would I get the same run around and be down for 4 days?  I hope not.