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Licensing Questions Thread, Win 7 and Volume Licencing in Technical; I am at a school which are shortly going to purchase some new laptops which come with Windows 7 Pro ...
  1. #1

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    Win 7 and Volume Licencing

    I am at a school which are shortly going to purchase some new laptops which come with Windows 7 Pro licences.

    These are going on a network and in the past I have only used Win XP with a Volume Licence Key, but believe Windows 7 works a bit differently with its licence and activation.

    I don't really want to have to input the OEM licence for each machine and activate it manually each time a station is rebuilt, and would rather use a volume licence key as watched at: Volume Activation Process - Windows, Server, Office | TechNet

    The thing is, as part of the cost of the Laptops is Windows 7 Pro, wouldn't purchasing a volume licence key for them be purchasing the same thing twice? Or am I missing something?

    I'd also be interested to know where it would be best to go to buy MS CAL licences and Volume Licences.

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    In terms of "being best" you're best off getting quotes from various authorised sellers, in the end our school found Pugh.co.uk to be the best suppliers, and they seem very knowledgeable whenever I have a licensing query.

    We ended up going with a school's EES agreement, licensing our entire site for Windows and Office. With this, you get the latest and greatest OS and Office version upon release, and access to things like Windows 7 Enterprise and MS Technet. As far as I know, your systems have to have a base license on in the first place to use volume licensing (may no longer be the case though). It might not make sense for you to go down the volume licensing route yet, it worked quite well for us because licensing was a huge mess in our school and we wanted to start pushing 7 and Office 2010 out on workstations only licensed for XP and Office 2003.

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    Hi CommodoreS, If subscribing with Microsoft EES you will be buying a Windows 7 (Enterprise) upgrade license, which requires the OEM license for the hardware. You might find it cheaper to buy an alternative edition of the operating system, e.g. home premium which still qualifies for the upgrade.

    There is a table at the bottom of this page about qualifying operating systems - Microsoft Volume Licensing - Product Licensing Search – look for the academic column. Although this is for Windows 7 Professional upgrades (and Microsoft EES provides a Windows 7 Enterprise upgrade) – the Microsoft partner FAQ for EES directs us to this location.

    Again, assuming an EES subscription, you will be provided with both MAK and KMS keys for multiple activation.

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    if they are branded laptops hp for example and you image one before use (and dont mind the crapware) when you fire the image out it will be oem but pre activated. its also possible with branded pcs that have a slic2.1 bios (read most) to do your own install with a "doctored" win7 install media and have it fill in the hp details and be preactivated like from the factory and that will survive sysprepping so you can install one as you want sysprep it and refire the image out and have them all activated

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    sparkeh's Avatar
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    I refer you to my previous thread: Win 7 OEM licence, VLKs and reimaging rights

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