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I'm planning to buy an anti-virus software with 3 PC license, I want to what actually 3 PC license means, for example on my laptop I have Win XP and Win7 installed, if install this anti-virus it on both the OS, is it will be considered as 1 license or 2?

Here are one more scenario.

On same laptop if I installed it in VM than will be separate license?

Also let me know about additional scenarios.

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Three operating systems, technically speaking, though you could argue that you're only using one at a time with dual-boot.

VM is definitely two separate licences required.

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Also I think the 3 PC license would be explained in the terms and conditions. – mickburkejnr Feb 9 '11 at 9:10
Technically a VM is just another PC. It may not look like one, but it is. Some software have VMs as exception. ie Windows XP allows a single VM install in addition to a PC install. – surfasb Jun 24 '11 at 21:27

A lot of older software licences talk solely about hardware (i.e. per PC), however with virtual machine and dual boots on the rise, software companies have got wise to this, and licences are increasingly requiring a licence per OS. Other licences (often for enterprise and shareware software) ignore PCs and OSs entirely and simply refer to concurrent uses - you can have it installed as many places you like, as long as it's only running in n places at once.

So, in short, it would depend entirely on the licence, though it should be specified in the terms and conditions. Most software companies make the licence available on their website before you purchase, so have a read - with the assistance of your solicitor if you think it's important enough.

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