By Ellie / Last Updated March 11, 2022

License server is not available on Windows Server 2016

“I have set up a Windows Server 2016. Installed the 10 per User CALS after following all of the requirements and activating the core license. When I run the RD license Diagnoser, however, I keep getting the following error:

License server XXX is not available. This could be caused by network connectivity problems, the Remote Desktop Licensing service is stopped on the license server, or RD Licensing is no longer installed on the computer.

What causes this problem and how can I fix this?”

License Server Is Not Available

How to fix “License server is not available” on Windows Server 2016

If you’re facing this problem when using Remote Desktop on Windows Server computers, here we offer you four methods to fix Remote Desktop “License server is not available”.

Method 1. Change the licensing server name in Group Policy

Step 1. Press Win + R to open the run dialog box, and type in “gpedit.msc” to open the Local Group Policy Editor.

Run Box Gpedit.msc

Step 2. Navigate to: Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Remote Desktop Services > Remote Desktop Session Host > Licensing. Double-click Licensing.

Licensing

Step 3. Find Use the specified Remote Desktop license servers and double-click to open it.

Use the Specified Remote Desktop License Servers

Step 4. Switch Not configured to Enabled, enter the corresponding server name in the License servers to use, and click OK to complete the configuration.

Configure the License Server

Step 5. Back to the Licensing setting list, double-click Set the Remote Desktop licensing mode.

Set the Remote Desktop Licensing Mode

Step 6. Select Enabled. Then under Specify the licensing mode for the Remote Desktop Session Host server, select Per Device or Per User, as appropriate for your deployment.

Specify the Licensing Mode

Step 7. Re-run the RD Licensing Diagnoser. The problem should be gone.

Method 2. Install RDS client access licenses on the Remote Desktop license server

Step 1. Click Start, then find Server Manager.

Server Manager

Step 2. On the Dashboard, click Remote Desktop Services.

Remote Desktop Services Server

Step 3. Click Servers, find and right-click the server that is not available, then choose RD Licensing Manager.

RD Licensing Manager

Step 4. Right-click the server and select Install Licenses.

Install Licensing

Step 5. Choose the type of license you purchased.

Choose Licensing Type

Step 6. Here we’ll take License Pack (Retail Purchase) as our License program.

Install Licenses Wizard

Step 7. Enter the License key, click Add, and then Next.

Add License Key

Step 8. After the License is successfully installed click Finish.

Complete the Installation

Step 9. Open RD Licensing Manager again and select Review Configuration.

Review Configuration

Step 10. Click Add to Group first and then Continue.

Add to Group

Step 11. Enter the Domain user name and password and click OK.

Enter the Domain Name

Step 12. Then the license server will be added to the Terminal Server License Servers group in Active Directory.

Added to Terminal Server License

Step 13. Refresh the RD License Manager.

Refresh License Manager

Step 14. But if you check the RD Licensing Diagnoser, you might still see some errors like the below image. The next thing you need to do is to follow the same steps in Method 1 to edit those two specific group policies.

RD Licensing Diagnoser

Step 15. Re-run the RD Licensing Diagnoser. The problem should be gone.

Method 3. Change the licensing server name on a non-standalone RD Licensing Server

Step 1. Open Server Manager and then click Remote Desktop Services. Click Overview first, and then click TASKS. Choose Edit Deployment Properties.

Server Manager RD Config

Step 2. Go to the RD Licensing tab, choose either Per User or Per Device, as appropriate for your deployment. Specify a license server, and then click Add.

RD Licensing Configure

Step 3. Re-run the RD Licensing Diagnoser. The problem should be gone.

Method 4. Change permissions on the RDS GracePeriod key and delete the key

Step 1. Press Win + R to open the run dialog box, and type in “gpedit.msc” and press Enter.

Run Box Regedit

Step 2. Navigate to : HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > SYSTEM > CurrentControlSet > Control > Terminal Server > RCM > GracePeriod. Right-click it and then choose Permissions.

GracePeriod

Step 3. Click Advanced.

Permission for GracePeriod

Step 4. Click Change to choose whichever user/group that you want to use to delete the registry key.

Change the Ownership of the Registry Key

Step 5. Tick the two options. Then click OK.

User for Ownership Selected

Step 6. Then you can grant your user full control over the key.

Grant Full Control

Step 7. Then right-click the value in the GracePeriod key and Delete it.

Delete GracePeriod

Step 8. Reboot your server.

Try free & easy alternative to Remote Desktop for Windows Server 2016

One more option we provide you here is to use the free and easy third-party remote desktop software AnyViewer, which supports multiple Windows versions, including Windows Server 2016. It is much easier to use compared with Remote Desktop. Let’s see how to use it.

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7
Secure Download

 Step 1. Download, install, launch AnyViewer on both computers.

Connect

Step 2. Go to Log in, and then click Sign up. (If you already have signed up on its official website, you can log in directly.)

Log in AnyViewer

Step 3. Fill in the signup information.

Sign Up for AnyViewer

Step 4. Then you can see you successfully logged in to AnyViewer. Your device will automatically be assigned to the account you've logged in to.

Free Editions

Step 5. Log in to the same AnyViewer account on the two devices, then click Remote control to achieve unattended remote access.

Connect to My Devices

Note: If you want to assign more devices to achieve unattended remote access, then you can upgrade your account to a Professional or Enterprise plan. Also, you can connect to another computer in privacy mode, which means you can black the screen and block the mouse and keyboard of the remote computer.

Pro Edition

Conclusion

This post mainly introduces four methods to fix Remote Desktop “License server is not available” on Windows Server 2016. Besides, we also provide you with another option. You can use the free and easy third-party remote desktop software AnyViewer, which is much easier to use than Remote Desktop.