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I'm about to buy a new Windows PC, and I'm wondering which edition of Windows 7 to get. The standard retail customer choices nowadays seem to be Home Premium, Professional or Ultimate.

I need to do the following:

  • Open a VPN connection from home to my employer's Windows domain, using my employer's Windows domain credentials.
  • While the VPN is connected, connect to file shares on the work network that I have access to.
  • While the VPN is connected, open Remote Desktop clients to work PCs that I have access to.

I don't envisage ever needing to connect in the opposite direction.

All the information I have been able to find on the internet concerning Windows 7 seems rather vague. Can anyone confirm, for example, whether Home Premium is sufficient for this, or should I shell out more money to get Professional or Ultimate?

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Which VPN technology are you planning on using? –  Goyuix Jan 11 '10 at 15:32
    
Just the standard Microsoft one built into Windows. –  Christian Hayter Jan 11 '10 at 16:26
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3 Answers

up vote 5 down vote accepted

Windows 7 Home Premium should be fine, since I believe all versions of Windows 7 can connect to a VPN natively and Home Premium comes with RDP to make those connections. What you should do though, is check with your IT department and make sure that their VPN software works on Windows 7. If they use Server 2003/2008/2008 R2 Routing and Remote Access no software should need to be installed and everything should work without any problem. If they use something like the Cisco VPN Server they currently do not support the Cisco VPN Client on Windows 7 64-bit. (Cisco VPN Anyconnect supposedly does)

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Thanks Joshua, you've put my mind at rest! –  Christian Hayter Jan 11 '10 at 22:04
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Wouldn't you run into troubles of not joining Domain through VPN using Home Premium only? AFAIK Home Premium has not ability to join Windows Domain networks.

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As Peter said, Home editions cannot join a domain. I do not know if that will be an issue, but it is something to discuss with IT. Most companies don't require a home PC to join the domain, but yours might.

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