Windows Server

Windows Server 2016/2019 Evaluation: How to extend the Trial Period

In this blog post I will show you how to extend your trial period to three years. The evaluation version of Windows Server 2012 / 2016 is valid for 180 days and you can convert your trial version to retail.

To explore Windows Server 2016 or 2019 download it here:

After installing, you can try it out for 180 days. After 180 days you and your system will run into troubles for sure. But the good news is: You can extend the period to another 180 days up to 3 years.

Extending the Trial Period

First, take a look at your desktop. You should see the countdown in the corner down right.


Or start PowerShell and run slmgr.

slmgr -dlv

Pay attention to the Timebased activation expiration and the Remaining Windows rearm count. You can rearm the period 6 times. (180 days * 6 = 3 years).


When the period comes to an end, run slmgr -rearm to extend it by another 180 days.

slmgr -rearm


Next restart your computer.


Once restarted, open PowerShell and check your settings.

slmgr -dli


Important Note

The evaluation version may not be used for commercial purposes. Have fun playing with the Windows Server 2016 Evaluation Version!

By the way: You can do the same with Windows 10. But the Windows 10 Evaluation Version can be used only for 180 days in total.

36 replies »

  1. Hi Patrick,
    In my case, Evaluation has expired. when i run “slmgr – rearm” and restart machine. I could see that it has been extended only for 10 days (slmgr – dli). i do not have Internet connect to this VM. any suggestions??


  2. Thanks a lot. After looking around to backup, not migrate data, there was a lack out there. This is very helpful. Took a break from MCSA training and the counter reset from 4 days to 180.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi, why do you recomend not to use the evaluation version for commercial purposes? I work in IT for a small business, and i’m thinking on starting to build a small server, obviously I want to start using the trial because I know nothing about servers. Thanks


    • Hi Marvin, it it not allowed to use the trial version for commercial use. Microsoft tolerated the use of trials for a short period of time in the past. It’s up to you to convert the trial version to a full version and pay for the OS.



  4. Does the computer have to be connected to the internet? The command yielded a 10 day rearm without being connected to the internet.


  5. Hey there pewa, awesome article! Bookmarked for later. But what do you mean with:

    “By the way: You can do the same with Windows 10. But the Windows 10 Evaluation Version can be used only for 180 days in total.”

    Sooo, you can extend it? Or not?


  6. Hello,

    may i ask you a question.

    i try to install virtualizor/KVM and install windows server 2016 on my vm,
    it shows 0 day,and i apply “slmgr -rearm”,it extend 180 days as your screen shows.

    but when i download windows server essential 2016 and install it on my pc,
    i use the key to install,
    it shows “Activate Windows Go to Settings to activate Windows” now,
    may i ask why there such a difference ?
    is it possible i let it show like 180 days as your screen shows ?

    because im new to test it.

    thank you.


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