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I heard a rumor that of you use a "server motherboard" with multiple sockets then that somehow forces you to use windows server rather than ordinary windows, is that true? Why would that be?

I had this motherboard in mind: http://uk.asus.com/product.aspx?P_ID=0dOUj0Ts5XBBxUJ6

I was planning to plug in a couple of xeon processors and run it with windows 7 professional. Could that work?

EDIT: Sorry, I should have phrased that as "I heard a rumor that of you use a 'server motherboard' with two sockets then that somehow forces you to use windows server rather than windows professional". I already know that standard windows only handles one CPU and you need windows professional to handle 2 CPUs.

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3 Answers 3

No, that is not true. You can use which ever version of Windows you would like. Drivers may be another issue, but as for the initial OS install, you would not be limited.

Yes, you could run a xeon powered workstation with Win7 Pro. That would be an excellent and powerful combo.

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I'm running Windows 7 on a dual Xeon Dell Precision workstation right now! It's quite powerful and I definitely recommend it. –  Russ Warren Jan 18 '10 at 17:16
    
@troggy: What do you mean when you say "drivers may be another issue"? –  Mick Jan 18 '10 at 17:23
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Microsoft's Desktop operating systems support up to 2 physical processors (regardless of the number of cores).

I double-checked with the on-line MS licensing viewer and according to it All versions of Windows 7 (including Home Basic) support up to 2 physical processors -- under "2. INSTALLATION AND USE RIGHTS":

"b. Licensed Computer. You may use the software on up to two processors on the licensed computer at one time."

Once you get above 2 physical processors you have to start looking at Windows Server.

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The rumor has at least a basis in fact. Desktop versions of Windows (depending on exact version) might not support as much RAM or as many processors. It would work fine, but might not see all the available system resources.

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This is a good point mentioning that the different OS versions have hardware limitations in place. –  Troggy Jan 18 '10 at 17:52
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