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Microsoft's Office Starter edition has an interesting option to create a portable version on a USB flash drive using the "Microsoft Office Starter To-Go Device Manager". This creates a portable version of the Word and Excel starter editions (limited versions of the normal applications that include ads).

This would be great for use in Virtual Machines since it requires no registration and has a perpetual license. But I want to copy the files off of the flash drive and just store them in the VHD. The problem is that it appears when you try to run the office.exe executable from anywhere but the USB drive you get the error "Microsoft Office Starter To-Go cannot be launched because it is installed on an unsupported device."

Any ideas what it is objecting to and is there a legal workaround for this? A limited but legal and portable version of Word and Excel is a great idea. But tying it specifically to a USB flash drive seems a bit odd. They don't seem to care how many of those flash drives you create so it's not clear what the restrictions are about.

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A virtual flash drive may be helpful (even if as a temporary solution). There are software that can create and mount virtual flash drives in Windows and I think it's doable on linux too. – Mustafa AKTAŞ Feb 9 at 13:36

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