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Do you have to be a "partner" to take advantage of an OEM key?


SolidSonicTH
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My father seems to think so. I personally do not because all of you seem to be installing it and I doubt you're all recognized MS "system builder partners".

 

The keys are only like $70 right now, which is a fine price but I don't want to blow money if it really requires some kind of special recognized "status" to activate keys that come this way.

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I believe OEM just means the software can only be registered against 1 system (motherboard) so you can't uninstall it and re-install it on to another system at a later time.

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Correct. If you're actually talking about retail keys like TechNet offers, that's another story. Install any of those TechNet keys on any machine(s) and activate it up to 10 times.

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I see.

 

Well, unless I decide to build a better PC to act as a Home Server (and really, I don't think I need more power than I already have), I think this computer's staying as a WHS box.

 

So I'll probably do that.

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Technically, I believe OEM Windows is supposed to be sold only with a computer, not on it's own. Many retailers fudge the rules by selling it with almost any cheapy piece of hardware, calling it a 'system'. I'm almost certain there is no requirement that they be Microsoft Partners.

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Ikon is right with the technically correct answer. From the MS FAQ:

A. The current OEM System Builder License allows system builders to distribute Windows desktop operating system licenses in the following ways:

 

Preinstalled on a new PC.

Unopened OEM System Builder packs (1-, 3-, or 30-packs) can be distributed to other system builders by themselves. Note that they must remain unopened so the receiving system builder can accept and be bound by the break-the-seal license agreement that is affixed to the pack.

 

From the NewEgg product page:

Use of this OEM System Builder Channel software is subject to the terms of the Microsoft OEM System Builder License. This software is intended for pre-installation on a new personal computer for resale.

 

MS tightened up the legal language recently (well, last year or two) and made it more reseal oriented.

 

Doesn't seem like they've really cracked down and enforced this or punished retailers.

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osquest, which particular MS FAQ are you quoting from?

 

I ask this, because the FAQ on the Microsoft WHS 2011 product pages seems to imply a far more relaxed attitude. For example:

 

Q: I have tried the online experience and now would like to purchase the full version of the software. Where can I buy this from?

A: You can buy the software online from retailers such as Amazon.com or Newegg.com in the United States. If you are outside the United States, please check with your online software retailers to check for availability of the software through their websites.

 

Q: How much does Windows Home Server cost?

A: Manufacturers set the final pricing for their products depending on hardware specifications, storage capacity, and additional capabilities. Prices range from $350 and up. System Builders and do-it-yourself users can acquire the software from a variety of online sources. Check out the "How to Buy" page for more information.

 

This seems pretty clear that Microsoft are unlikely to crack down on do-it-yourself users who acquire the software from a reseller such as NewEgg and install it on their own home built server...

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