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VMWare and OS Licences

Discussion in 'Virtual Computing' started by Griffon, Jul 31, 2006.

  1. Griffon

    Griffon Bit Poster


    I have been using VMWare for a while, mainly with Linux installed and an old copy of Windows 98 and Vista Beta 2.

    I have been setting up a virtual lan this week and have come accross a problem. I want to install a WinXP Pro vm but I only have one WinXP licence - the one for the machine that is running vmware.....I don't agree with piracy in any if its forms. So I am kinda stuck, if I were installing that copy of XP Pro on an actuall machine I would be breaking the license agreeement and Windows Genuine Advantage malarky would kick in. Is it any different if I do it on vmawre? I bet I know the answer already :( Anyone know, is there any allowances for virtual computing?

    /me crosses fingers.
    Certifications: A Degree, A+
    WIP: Network+, MCDST
  2. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

    Good question, I was trying to find a definitive answer myself a couple of weeks ago. I would say on the face of it, it would be breaking the licence agreement. I know MS are making alterations to the EULA to account for the increasing popularity of virtualisation and multi-cored processors. For example, I think now, you can have more than one copy of Server 2003 installed with the same product key on the same hardware, as long as only one of them is running at a time.

    Also, I'm not sure how Product Activation factors in. If you installed your only copy of Windows on a VM, and made no attempt to activate it (or bypass the activation which is surprisingly easy) and just let it expire after 30 days,would that be against the licence? Probably. Would it really be considered piracy? IMO, no. I think if you're using it for testing purposes, and it's installed on the same hardware, you're alright. It's not like you're selling moody copies of Windows down the Portobello Road is it?
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  3. Nelix
    Honorary Member

    Nelix Gigabyte Poster

    I agree with you on the above, however we are talking about MS here and they take a totally different approach, if it's installed...then it needs to be licensed, even if you argued that you were only using it for testing they would respond with "then buy an MSDN License" and even then the software cannot be used for general use, only development and testing. MSDN License are expensive, however, depending on the subscription level you can install pretty much any MS software on virtually any number of machines as long as they are not used for general purposes, they must only be used for development and testing.

    Hope this helps
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  4. mcshap

    mcshap Bit Poster

    Vmware licensing has changed with Enterprise 2003 RC2. You can have 4 copies of vm OS running on the system with the one licence. Of course this is expensive for a test system.

    I personally use the technet+ subscription. This is about £300 but gives you all the info and licences you need for training and testing. You also do not need to activate unless you plan to use the OS for more than a certian amount of time (check the licence for info).
    Certifications: MCSE , MCITP, MCT, CTT+, VCP

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