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Dell Desktop Operating Systems

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Desktop operating systems

Windows 8 license - how does it work? There are only 2 versions of Windows Windows 8 for home users. Windows 8 Pro for business and advanced users. Windows is available as an upgrade for Windows XP And Windows 7. This is available as a retail package. There is no FPP Retail version of the full version of Windows 8 or Windows 8 Pro. It is ....more..
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Desktop operating systems


Windows 8 license - how does it work?

There are only 2 versions of Windows
  • Windows 8 for home users.
  • Windows 8 Pro for business and advanced users.


Windows is available as an upgrade for Windows XP And Windows 7. This is available as a retail package.


There is no FPP Retail version of the full version of Windows 8 or Windows 8 Pro. It is only available as DSP which is licensed as "OEM" or "Personal use" as below. The "Personal use" license replaces the retail license.


For a new computer, a computer with no O.S. or a VM (Virtual Machine)

There is no Retail (FPP - full packaged product)  version of Windows 8 or Windows 8 Pro.

If you have a new computer, or old computer that has no OS on it (and never had), or you would like to install Windows 8 / Windows 8 Pro onto a VM (such as on a Mac), you will need to buy the DSP version of Windows 8 or Windows 8 Pro.

You will fall under the "personal use" license.

If your computer already has Windows XP or Windows 7 on it


If you already have Windows XP or Windows 7 installed on a PC, you will need to buy the upgrade version.
  • OEM: the manufacturer supplied installation that cannot be moved to another computer.  A Windows machine must start with either OEM or Personal Use License (see later).
  • FPP Upgrade: Fully packaged product, the thing you buy off the shelf or direct from Microsoft. Windows 8 (for Home) or Windows 8 Pro (for business and advanced users). This is an upgrade license only.
  • VL: Volume license, which you can buy if you have more than 5 machines. It is legally an upgrade license (even though it can do a clean install). It requires the machine already has an existing license, e.g. an OEM of Windows 7 Pro or Windows 8 Pro.
  • SA: Software Assurance, an optional add-on or Open or Select (volume) license programs that offers free upgrades and additional benefits for a certain number of years, e.g. 2 years.  EA and Open Value license programs include SA.
  • Personal Usage License: The “system builder” license that is available to actual system builders. Now it is also available to enthusiasts who build their own PC and have no OEM license to start with. Not for upgrades, legalization, or businesses over 5 users.
  • Legalization: You or an auditor has found discrepancies and you need to fix your licensing.

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