A license, in software, is a permission granted to a user to use a piece of software, under certain conditions outlined in the license agreement.

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Windows 7 and Vista Activation FAQ: How do language, version, 64-bit or 32-bit, and source affect ability to install and transfer Windows licenses?

We get a lot of questions on Super User about Windows activation and licensing. This question is an attempt to answer the most common questions in one place with a canonical answer. When ...
53
votes
4answers
11k views

Buy old Windows version now and still get the upgrade for free?

We have a little office for our local sports club here. In this office we have three PCs which are all running on Ubuntu. Because all of the PC users in this office are not that well educated in ...
49
votes
6answers
62k views

How does Windows 7 licensing work for running the OS as Virtual Machines?

I plan on buying Windows 7 Ultimate Edition to run on an old Pentium 4. I also want to run Windows 7 virtual machines inside Windows 7. My question is two fold: Do I need a license for each Virtual ...
20
votes
3answers
10k views

Can I “transfer” my Windows 7 license to a virtual machine running on the same computer?

I've read the blog post on license transfer, but I'm not clear in the case where I already have a licensed, activated copy of Windows 7 running on my PC but want to move that license to a VM running ...
19
votes
8answers
4k views

Installing legal older versions of Windows XP

For testing purposes, I need to install a Windows XP Home environment in a virtual machine. The thing here is I don't have a license and Microsoft won't sell it anymore. What can I do about it?
19
votes
2answers
179k views

Where I can I legally download Windows 7 installation .ISO files? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Where do I download Windows 7 (legally from Microsoft)? Disclaimer: I'm primarily a Linux/Unix person, so all this Windows licensing stuff is new to me. Where I can I ...
18
votes
4answers
96k views

Can I transfer a Windows 7 license to another computer? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When reinstalling Windows 7, does the language, version, architecture (64-bit or 32-bit) or source (OEM, retail, or MSDN) matter? I was thinking of buying Windows 7 ...
16
votes
4answers
83k views

Making a cracked or activated windows uncracked

I have a PC which has windows 7 license but I installed windows from an image I downloaded and it is already activated. For validating genuine Microsoft, I need to enter my own product key but the ...
15
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8answers
34k views

Can we use Windows 7 Home Premium for work?

I'd like our company to buy me a new laptop, but as I want quadcore i7 720QM, there are a lot of models with Windows 7 Home Premium, and few with Windows 7 Professional. I have looked in the edition ...
15
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4answers
2k views

What are the license(s) of the Linux man pages?

What is the license on the Linux man pages? GPL, Public Domain, etc? The Wikipedia page about the man doesn't appear to have any info about the licensing status of the man pages.
13
votes
8answers
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Acquire Windows XP License Keys Legally

I'd like to get my hands on to legal Windows XP keys so that I could setup a few virtual machines. I'm a software developer and this would be greatly useful. I'm willing to buy them (cheaply) if ...
13
votes
5answers
5k views

If I buy the Windows 8 Pro upgrade, can I do multiple fresh installs?

My understanding is that when I first upgrade, I can choose to upgrade as a fresh install. If I want to do another fresh install in the future, can I do that? I tend to reinstall Windows every 1-3 ...
13
votes
1answer
15k views

Is my Windows 7 x86 license key valid for a x64 installation of Windows? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When reinstalling Windows 7, does the language, version, architecture (64-bit or 32-bit) or source (OEM, retail, or MSDN) matter? I've just got a new laptop with Windows 7 ...
12
votes
9answers
26k views

How can I upgrade from Vista 32-bit to Vista 64-bit?

I just ordered a laptop, and it came with Vista Home Premium 32-bit. I want Vista Home Premium 64-bit on it. I'm planning a reinstall. Does anyone know if my product key for Vista 32-bit will also ...
12
votes
3answers
5k views

How can I change the license key on Windows-8

I have Windows-8 running. I set it up at home using my own license key. However now I need to change the license key to use it at work. In the past I've managed to do this by editing the OOBETimer ...
11
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2answers
2k views

Consequences of Windows Genuine Advantage Warning?

On my desktop at home, the only reason I boot Windows is Team Fortress 2. Lately Windows Genuine Advantage has been telling me that my Windows is illegitimate. I get a black screen with a notification ...
10
votes
4answers
9k views

Is it possible to install Windows 10 as the host OS and as one or several guest(s)?

With a single license of Windows 10, is it possible to install the OS at the same time as: The OS of the host machine (the non-virtual machine) The OS of one or several guest system(s) In such ...
10
votes
3answers
53k views

How to remove or deactivate my windows 7 licence on one computer and use it on another [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When installing Windows 7 or Vista, does the language, version, architecture (64-bit or 32-bit) or source (OEM, retail, or MSDN) matter? I want to remove my windows 7 ...
10
votes
1answer
36k views

How can I upgrade from Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard to Enterprise Edition?

Our IT guy mistakenly set up Windows 2008 R2 Standard Edition instead of Enterprise Edition. The machine has 64GB of RAM, and Standard only supports 32GB, so half of it is unusable. Is there a way to ...
10
votes
3answers
44k views

Legal to install an OEM license of Windows 7 in VMWare Fusion?

I have a desktop (HP) and a laptop (MacBook Pro). HP is currently running Vista Ultimate. (It came with Vista Premium; I formatted it and installed Vista Ultimate because I had a license for that on ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

How can I return a Microsoft License delivered with a Dell computer?

I have to change my current single-core Pentium computer to a new Dell XPS8300. Unfortunately, I'm deadly allergic to Microsoft and someone where I work says I can return the Microsoft Windows that ...
9
votes
1answer
12k views

Does the license allow me to run Windows 7 in a virtual machine and on the host? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How does Windows 7 licensing work for running the OS as Virtual Machines? To sum things up: I have bought Windows 7 Professional (OEM license) It's installed on my laptop ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

Can a user use any software be it Legal/Pirated with windows xp/7 Legal Version (OEM)

This question is just to increase my knowledge as a dealer/seller of microsoft systems. In my location customers are not willing to use original Windows installations, as they say that they will not ...
9
votes
4answers
34k views

Microsoft Home Use Program - use more than one computer

I purchased a copy of MS Office through Microsoft Home Use Program (HUP) It basically allows you get a very cheap copy for home use if your employer owns the licence. My question is: Can I install it ...
9
votes
4answers
13k views

Can you re-install Windows 7 OEM on a new motherboard?

I want to buy a copy of Windows 7 OEM for my PC so I can run Adobe Premiere on a 64 bit OS. However, there seems to be a problem with OEM copies as some people say that once you install them you can't ...
8
votes
3answers
3k views

Can I reuse the licence of Windows XP from laptop to desktop

I purchased a HP Laptop with preinstalled Windows XP. The laptop has not worked for a few years now. I have recently purchased a desktop and can I use the same license key to get Windows XP ...
8
votes
4answers
14k views

Recovering a Windows XP License key

I threw out a Windows XP machine a while ago (the motherboard failed). I kept the hard drive and the XP installation media. Problem is the license key was on a sticker on the machine - doh! The ...
8
votes
7answers
46k views

Same Windows 7 license key on a laptop and a desktop — legal?

I would like to know if it is legal to use the same Windows 7 Home Premium license key on my laptop and on my desktop? Someone told me that I could because MS allows you to use the same key on a ...
8
votes
1answer
398 views

Which files within a win 7 cd report info about exact license type

As described in title I'm looking for a way to know which type of license come with a Win7 (Pro SP1) CD: Retail, OEM and so on... But I'm interested in understanding which files contained in ...
7
votes
2answers
11k views

Is it possible upgrade to Windows 8 from Windows XP/Vista/7 OEM?

In a Microsoft's post about Windows 8 upgrade it is written: We set out to make it as easy as possible for everyone to upgrade to Windows 8. Starting at general availability, if your PC is running ...
7
votes
2answers
35k views

Is there a way to establish what version a Windows 7 product key is?

I have a Windows 7 product key that I foolishly did not label. Rather than downloading and creating disks for however many different ISOs exist (Basic, Pro, Ultimate, 32-bit/64-bit, upgrade, full ...
6
votes
3answers
36k views

One License and multiple PCs, how does it work?

This question is about win7, not an OEM license. I'm planning on getting windows 7 home basic for my machine. However, I'm also planning on building a PC in the next year or two. Now, I've read ...
6
votes
3answers
11k views

Is it legal to use windows 7 home premium as business?

Someone told me this was illegal, is it?
6
votes
2answers
5k views

Number of Windows 8 Pro licenses per computer

I have three computers that I would like to upgrade to Windows 8, and I'm wondering if purchasing the Pro version once is enough for all of them. Here is what I saw on the Microsoft site. I want to ...
6
votes
1answer
7k views

On how many device can install a single user license of Visual Studio 2012?

I have my eye on Visual Studio 2012. I'm buying it for myself so I only want to pay for one user license. I have my desktop computer at home, my work laptop, and a tablet. On how many devices can I ...
6
votes
1answer
32k views

On how many computers can I install Microsoft Office 2010 Professional?

I have bought one copy of Office 2010 Pro. How many computers can I install it on?
6
votes
3answers
926 views

What will happen if I activate my Windows XP VM?

I made a Windows VM with Virtualbox in Ubuntu linux. I used the install disc that came with my laptop (I have a paid license for Windows XP). When I started my VM for the first time, it asked me to ...
6
votes
4answers
5k views

Can a license purchased in one country be used in another country?

My company has branches in France and India. The France office has bought sharepoint licenses for the development center in India. My IT support team says that they cannot use the licenses here in ...
6
votes
1answer
12k views

Explain Adobe's Deactivation Process to Me

My computer's on the fritz and in preparation of the thing going into the basement, I need to grab all the old software from it. In this case, namely the copy of CS5 on it. I hear of a deactivation ...
6
votes
3answers
24k views

How to uninstall a license key

I bought Windows 8 Professional, updated to it from my Win 7 Pro and it's great. All in all, I wanna keep using Windows 8, but something went wrong with my Visual Studio 2012 Professional installation....
6
votes
1answer
4k views

Windows 10 Free Upgrade - What happens to Windows 7/8?

Microsoft is giving Windows 10 away for free to Windows 7/8/8.1 users. If one reserves Windows 10 with the new notification in the tray area, what will happen to their Windows 7/8/8.1 license? Are ...
5
votes
4answers
30k views

Serial Number and Product Number of laptop in Windows

How do I get the Product and Serial Number of ASUS EeePC netbook on Windows (XP preferably)? Edit: I am not a label reader and I am interested to retrieve the two numbers by software or tool.
5
votes
9answers
5k views

Reload OEM Windows XP

I have a computer that came with Windows XP Home (with the sticker on it that has the product key). I used it for some time with a (legally obtained) copy of Windows. Now I want to reload the ...
5
votes
2answers
432 views

What are the license terms of Microsoft products that are no longer supported?

What are the license terms of Microsoft products that are no longer supported? Like Windows 98 or Microsoft Money?
5
votes
3answers
665 views

Upgrading to Windows 8 and keeping Windows 7

If I pay the $39.99 for the upgrade from Windows 7, will I still be able to use my Windows 7 license on another PC? I know it probably isn't supposed to work, but does anyone know for sure?
5
votes
4answers
502 views

Is there any value in a Windows 98 license? [closed]

Cleaning up some old papers, I found a Windows 98 license certificate. Does this have any value at all, or should I just toss it?
5
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1answer
5k views

Is there a way to legally extend the evaluation period?

Is it possible to rearm Windows 8 evaluation copy when it is close to expiry of 90 days again and again after every three months?
5
votes
4answers
3k views

How to tell if my license is OEM?

I got a Windows 7 license key from my university for my computer. I have 2 computers though, is it okay if I use the same key for both of them? According to this, unless it is OEM license it should ...
5
votes
4answers
6k views

How to audit all the software installed on a PC [closed]

one of my customers is going to be audited by a Microsoft partner to check if all the installed software is legal. So far, so good with the software I installed: all the Windows XP machines have ...
5
votes
3answers
9k views

Upgrade to full Windows 8

I am currently running an evaluation of Windows 8, as can be seen by the following screenshot of the bottom right hand side of my screen. How can I upgrade to the full, non-evaluation version of ...