Microsoft products and services—including images, text, and software downloads (the "content")—are owned either by Microsoft Corporation or by third parties who have granted Microsoft permission to use the content. Microsoft cannot grant you permission for content that is owned by third parties. You may only copy, modify, distribute, display, license, or sell the content if you are granted explicit permission within the End-User License Agreement (EULA) or license terms that accompany the content or are provided in the following guidelines. For more information, consult your copyright attorney.

Visit the copyright FAQ or Microsoft trademarks for additional information.

Requirements for allowed uses

For permission to be granted for any uses allowed by these guidelines, you must comply with the following four requirements:

Use full product name

If your use includes references to a Microsoft product, you must use the full name of the product. Follow Microsoft Trademark and Brand Guidelines when referencing Microsoft Trademarks.


Link methods

You may link to Microsoft content by using a plain text link with words such as "This way to"

No offensive use

Your use may not be obscene or pornographic, and you may not be disparaging, defamatory, or libelous to Microsoft, any of its products, or any other person or entity.

Permitted by Microsoft

You must include the following statement: "Used with permission from Microsoft."


If you have any questions concerning the usage or licensing of Microsoft copyrighted materials, for example, Microsoft advertisements, photographs, video footage, or other Microsoft materials, please submit your detailed request in writing to:

Microsoft Corporation
One Microsoft Way
Redmond, WA 98052-6399

Please be sure to include any surrounding copy or text to the Microsoft material. In your advertising, Microsoft does not permit you to:

  • Use Microsoft-owned content, including but not limited to icons, product sounds, product animations, logos, and images without Microsoft’s prior permission.
  • Imply Microsoft sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement.

Microsoft product box shots are complete images of Microsoft product boxes. You may not use Microsoft box shots on third-party software packaging. You may use box shots in advertising, in documentation (including educational brochures), in tutorial books, in videos, or on websites, provided that, in addition to the requirements above, you:

  • Do not alter the box shot except to resize the entire box shot.
  • Do not use any images contained with the box shot (for example, graphics, artwork, or trade dress) independently of the entire box shot.
  • Present your company name and logo, product, and/or graphics significantly larger or more prominently than the box shot.

If you are part of a nonprofit organization and are seeking a donation of software or software licenses from Microsoft to your organization, visit Microsoft Philanthropies.

Windows comes with a collection of pre-installed fonts. In general, the fonts supplied with Microsoft products may not be modified, copied, or redistributed. Explore the Font redistribution FAQ for Windows for more information. Many of the fonts that come with Microsoft products are also available directly from their original creators. Look at the trademark and copyright notices within each font file to determine who to contact for additional end user, ISV, or OEM licenses. Some of the fonts that contain copyright or trademark strings identifying Microsoft as the font’s creator can be licensed from Monotype Imaging. Find licensing information at Microsoft typography.

For questions regarding the use of games or game content published and owned by Xbox Game Studios, visit Game Content Usage Rules. For other information about Xbox content, go to developer information.

Visit Bing Maps for information on licensing arrangements and pricing options for the commercial use of maps.

Microsoft product icons are the thumbnail-sized images indicating that a Microsoft product has been installed on your operating system. Icons may not be used in advertising, in books and other printed matter, on clothing or other promotional items, in online and Internet locations, in software applications, in television programs, in commercials, in movies, or on video.

You may use Microsoft product icons in training manuals or documentation about a Microsoft product. The use of the icon must be specific to the function of the icon within the Microsoft software. The icon may not be used as a graphical or design element. Icons cannot be modified or altered and must appear as they would within the Microsoft software.

If you have licensed a Microsoft development tool, review the redistributable section of the EULA to learn which Microsoft properties may be redistributed by licensees.

Microsoft logos, including our well-known product names such as Windows, Microsoft Office, and Xbox, are some of the most recognized, trusted, and valuable trademarks in the world. Microsoft logos may only be used in compliance with Microsoft trademark and brand guidelines. No other use is permitted.


Microsoft does not allow separate distribution of audio or AVI files—files with the extensions (.wav), (.mid), or (.avi).

For Microsoft images that may be used in articles or other news reports, visit the Microsoft News Center Image Gallery. Images found on the News Center may be used for editorial purposes only by the press and/or industry analysts. For images that contain third-party trademarks or logos or images of individuals, it is the responsibility of the user to determine whether consent from the third party or individual is necessary.

If your license terms do not grant redistribution rights for a particular software file and you need assistance with your software, visit Microsoft Help and Support. For software downloads, unless expressly permitted in the accompanying License Terms or End-User License Agreement (EULA), Microsoft does not allow redistribution. You may link to the download page, but not directly to the download, from your product or website. If you experience technical difficulties, visit the Product Solution Center and select the product in question. If the customer does not have internet access, Microsoft may provide a CD. Call (425) 882-8080 and ask to speak with a Product Support Services representative.

For Windows Internet Explorer (or any of its components), review the information regarding use and redistribution rights at Internet Explorer Administration Kit (IEAK). The IEAK allows a minimal silent install of Internet Explorer.

Microsoft does not own all articles and images appearing on its pages. To determine the owner of an image, move your pointer over the image and the copyright owner’s name will be displayed. To determine the owner of an article, look at the top of the article for the author or company that owns it.


Anyone, including a business, may link or point to articles on Microsoft websites for informational purposes, provided the material is available at no charge, it is not used for publication or sale outside of your company, and the pointer takes the user to the Microsoft page from which the material originates.


If you wish to reuse or reprint stories or images you found on, please visit MSNBC Reprint Requests.

Visit Volume licensing briefs downloads to determine if you may have downgrade rights for your product. If Microsoft does not permit the downgrading of your product, visit the Product Solution Center, which provides information for many Microsoft products, including information on common issues and the Microsoft product return policy.

You may use images or content from Microsoft products and services in school reports provided that you comply with the guidelines above. You may critique or comment on the product or service.

You may not use screenshots of Microsoft product boot-up screens, opening screens, "splash screens," or screens from beta release products or other products that have not been commercially released. You may use other screenshots in advertising, in documentation (including educational brochures), in tutorial books, in videos, or on websites, provided that, in addition to the requirements above, you:

  • Do not alter the screenshot except to resize it.
  • Do not use portions of screenshots.
  • Do not include screenshots in your product user interface.
  • Do not use screenshots that contain third-party content.
  • Do not use screenshots that contain an image of an identifiable individual.

You may sell a spreadsheet, database, or PowerPoint deck you made using Microsoft software. The spreadsheet, database, or PowerPoint deck must be created using legitimate, licensed Microsoft software.

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Intellectual property

Innovation is at the heart of Microsoft as a company.