Know the facts. And get the genuine licensed software you deserve.
- Each PC needs its own full license. To be properly licensed and receive technical support and updates, you must have a full underlying license for all software installed on each PC.
- Volume License Agreements cover Windows software upgrades only. All Volume Licensing agreements, including those for Academic, Government, Healthcare, and Small Business are upgrade only and require a qualifying underlying license. Microsoft® Windows® upgrades are designed to upgrade previously acquired qualifying licenses. This means you must first have the full license for a qualifying underlying operating system for each PC before you install the upgrade. Windows software licensing is different from other Microsoft software because Volume Licensing Agreements do offer a full version of all Microsoft software except Windows desktop operating systems.
- With the introduction of Windows 8.1, there are two ways to legally acquire the initial full version of Windows: The first is preinstalled on a PC through a PC manufacturer or system builder—this is the most cost-effective way to get a genuine Windows license on a new PC. The second way to legally acquire the initial full version is through retail stores as a full packaged product.
When the license is intended for business use (except for academic institutions), the license that is acquired preinstalled or through a full package product must be a Windows Professional version.
- Only qualifying operating systems can be upgraded using a Volume Licensing agreement. For more information on Windows operating systems versions that qualify for upgrades under Volume Licensing agreement programs, click here.
- If you discover you have unlicensed or non-genuine software Microsoft has a portfolio of legalization solutions available to help you. Click here to see what options are available to you.