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Windows 7 OEM and regular windows 7 difference?

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September 12, 2011 2:30:59 AM

What is the difference between Windows 7 OEM and regular wibdows 7?
September 12, 2011 2:35:37 AM

Regular comes with limited free tech support.
a c 209 $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 2:36:14 AM

The most important difference is that the OEM version is sold for use on a particular machine - once you install and activate it you're not allowed to transfer it to another system.

The retail version allows you to move it to any other system you choose.
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September 12, 2011 2:38:01 AM

The software is the same, it is the licensing that is different.

There are differences in the support that you can get from Microsoft but I'm not real familiar with that because I've never asked for any support from Microsoft.

The licensing difference is that the OEM version is sold to go on a specific machine, and not be used on another machine. If you buy the OEM version and install it on a machine, and that machine dies, you can't install it on another machine. In effect the OS license dies with the machine. Of course you can repair that machine and keep it going.

If you buy a regular (expensive) version of Windows and put it on your PC, then you decide to throw that PC away and build a new one, you can install that same version of Windows on your new PC. You can't do that with the OEM version.
September 12, 2011 3:25:18 AM

OK I thought it had to do with licensing. Now how about this, What is the difference between Windows Home Premium and Windows 7 upgrade. The windows 7 upgrade is $109 and the other is $189 IMO that's a freaking rip off but whatever.
September 12, 2011 4:14:48 AM

Windows 7 upgrade is for if you were upgrading from an earlier version of windows.
September 12, 2011 4:28:21 AM

rds1220 said:
OK I thought it had to do with licensing. Now how about this, What is the difference between Windows Home Premium and Windows 7 upgrade. The windows 7 upgrade is $109 and the other is $189 IMO that's a freaking rip off but whatever.


In order to actually install a Win 7 Upgrade, you MUST have an accepted version of the Windows O/S already installed. If you go to the Microsucks Win 7 website they show you all the options, differences, Upgrade requirements, etc.
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 7:26:21 AM

beenthere said:
. If you go to the Microsucks Win 7 website ...


Can't you spell Microsoft..?

An important difference between OEM and retail Windows that I don't think someone else mentioned yet: If you buy retail, you can choose to install 32bit or 64bit, i.e. you get both options. OEM has to be one OR the other, and if you re-install later, you can't change it.
September 12, 2011 7:41:43 AM

I.E You buy the OEM and install it on your machine but after 1 year you decide to upgrade your VGA card i.e, then you lose your license. With the retail copy you can upgrade your PC without having any problems with your license.
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 8:03:33 AM

^Disagree; the license is normally tied to the motherboard. GPU, RAM, or CPU upgrades will make no difference.
a c 209 $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 3:44:05 PM

crisan_tiberiu said:
I.E You buy the OEM and install it on your machine but after 1 year you decide to upgrade your VGA card i.e, then you lose your license. With the retail copy you can upgrade your PC without having any problems with your license.
That's not true. You can actually upgrade several components without loosing your OEM license.
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 4:21:53 PM

Some small disagreements.
(1) If your Computer (MB) dies, You CAN re-install on a New MB using your OEM disk, may require a call to microsoft explaing that the MB died a 1000 deaths and is in the trask bin. You CAN NOT use the OEM version for a NEW/UPGRADED MB from a Working MB. As pointed out changing video card, Ram, HDD will not even prompt a reactivation.

(2) for a Upgrade Version, you DO NOT have to have the qualifing operating system installed - You Do have to OWN a the qualifing version. ie moving from XP to Windows 7 (Upgrade version), You are allowed to do a "Clean" install. Microsoft just makes you jump thru a couple of extra hoops. (1) Do a clean Install, with OUT entering the key, then reinstall a 2nd time using the key or, (2) The prefered method: Clean Install perform a simple registery edit and then a rearm cmd from Dos. Just google "clean Install using windows 7 Upgrade. IF YOU OWN the XP and are doing a Clean Install, buy the upgrade version!!
September 12, 2011 4:46:38 PM

Herr_Koos said:
^Disagree; the license is normally tied to the motherboard. GPU, RAM, or CPU upgrades will make no difference.

I disagree with that. I upgraded the CPU on my system. It ran ok. I did a clean install and said the license was invalid. I had to call MS for activation of my newer system hardware, the only upgrade was the CPU. Oh ya I upgraded from and Athlon x4 9950 to a Athlon II x6 1100...

Food to ponder on...
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 4:52:18 PM

^ I have replaced Ram, HDD, and video cards and never had to call uSoft. CPU Not sure, But in any case a simple phone call is all that is required - as you found out.
September 12, 2011 7:12:49 PM

Is the OEM version worth it? Its cheaper and it has its limits but its only for the one computer I'm building. Looking at the past how long is Windows 7 going to be #1 for anyway. Is it really worth 200 dollars for something that will probably be outdated in 5 to 10 years like Windows 98, ME, and 2000. When I build this Pc i plan on taking care of it and keeping it for awhile. Also I can't see the advantages of having 32 bit and 64 bit OS. My computer has that now and I only use windows 64bit. All my games like COD, COD UO, Cod 5 and Company of Heroes series all work on a 64 bit system.
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 7:16:27 PM

rrance said:
I disagree with that. I upgraded the CPU on my system. It ran ok. I did a clean install and said the license was invalid. I had to call MS for activation of my newer system hardware, the only upgrade was the CPU. Oh ya I upgraded from and Athlon x4 9950 to a Athlon II x6 1100...

Food to ponder on...


It ran fine before you did the clean install, that's the point. It would have kept on working after the CPU upgrade if you hadn't re-installed.
September 12, 2011 7:46:23 PM

rds1220 said:
Is the OEM version worth it? Its cheaper and it has its limits but its only for the one computer I'm building. Looking at the past how long is Windows 7 going to be #1 for anyway. Is it really worth 200 dollars for something that will probably be outdated in 5 to 10 years like Windows 98, ME, and 2000. When I build this Pc i plan on taking care of it and keeping it for awhile. Also I can't see the advantages of having 32 bit and 64 bit OS. My computer has that now and I only use windows 64bit. All my games like COD, COD UO, Cod 5 and Company of Heroes series all work on a 64 bit system.

IMO, yes. Since your only other option while sticking to Windows is the retail, and you are willing to use forums and work with computers, then the OEM version is worth it. If it lasts you for ten years, then that is only $20 a year. But then again, look at the older iMac G3s (The fruity colored egg shaped iMacs). They, in 10 years are way outdated! If your computer needs will stay the same of the next ten years, then look for that OEM license to be fine.
If I were you, I'd get the OEM license and not retail. It just is not worth it because I would not use the support, and can work on my own machine. I also plan to keep my custom builds around for a while.
So, go for it! :D 
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 7:49:56 PM

What's this 5 -> 10 years. By then Windows 9 should be out. I think windows 8 comes out Next year.
September 12, 2011 8:02:08 PM

I'm just saying. When we had windows 98 on our everyday home computer we continued to use windows 98 until XP came out. Like I said this build isn't going to be your everyday 300 dollar Dell that you can just throw away when it breaks I plan on keeping it for along time. With that said I just can't see myself spending all that money on something thats going to be outdated in no time anyway.
September 12, 2011 8:04:06 PM

Then if you can wait for a bit, wait until Windows 8 comes out.
That way you can have the features of 8, and keep the system kicking around for a while.
Do what you want. As you seem to have your mind made up that it is not worth it. If it is not worth buying 7, or waiting for 8, then what else is your choice? Linux......
September 12, 2011 8:06:50 PM

I guess but I'm most familiar with Windows its what I've used my entire life. Windows is the first OS we got after DOS became out dated and its always been like that we've never used anything else. I would probably just stick to Windows.
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 8:09:12 PM

Well then you'll have to buy something... There is no option besides Windows 7 right now. 7 is the new XP in my opinion; it will not become outdated any time soon.
September 12, 2011 8:14:49 PM

Maybe maybe not. Just did a search and a few websites have said that Microsoft VP Dani Lewin has hinted that Windows 8 will be released in the fall of 2012. Windows 8 might make Windows 7 outdated by this time next year.
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 8:17:33 PM

think about it this way, your license wont become invalid

if it does, a quick call to microsoft will fix it


the only difference is the support from microsoft, personally im a competent computer user and can fix most problems quite easily

so id go for oem, going to upgrade pc soon and im not paying for another version of windows

im in diferent boat though, i got student edition upgrade disk
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 8:17:46 PM

Microsoft have spent a LOT of effort getting the corporate market to adopt Windows 7. They will continue to support it for years to come, Windows 8 or no Windows 8.

Question is: Do you want to build new PC in the immediate future or don't you?
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 8:29:33 PM

rds1220 said:
Is the OEM version worth it? Its cheaper and it has its limits but its only for the one computer I'm building. Looking at the past how long is Windows 7 going to be #1 for anyway. Is it really worth 200 dollars for something that will probably be outdated in 5 to 10 years like Windows 98, ME, and 2000. When I build this Pc i plan on taking care of it and keeping it for awhile. Also I can't see the advantages of having 32 bit and 64 bit OS. My computer has that now and I only use windows 64bit. All my games like COD, COD UO, Cod 5 and Company of Heroes series all work on a 64 bit system.



FYI, Windows 8 is due out in 2012. I'm waiting until at least then to upgrade from XP.
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 8:35:47 PM

LOL - You could wait till windows 7 purchase incluses a FREE upgrade to Windows 8.

All Depends on your needs and ONLY you can determine that.

Windows 7 will be good for several years after windows 8 comes out. uSoft will do like it did with XP, announse a date for "No further" support - which only means that HW/Software that comes out after that date MAY/May NOT be supported.
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 10:27:34 PM

I have used OEM versions on my home builds for many years. In the few instances when a hardware upgrade caused a license issue, a call to MS always solved the issue. MS has never said no to the re-license under these circumstances. The cost of the call easily offset the cost difference in versions. I just upgraded from XP to Win7/64. Best move ever. The new OS is the best yet.
September 12, 2011 10:34:29 PM

Forget the 200 dollar full package I'm just getting the OEM 64bit package. I doubt I'll need all the support garbage that comes with the full package. If I can build a computer I can probably figure out how to troubleshoot Windows 7 without thier help its not worth another 100 dollars. It just seems better for me. With the full package I'm looking at 1,400 dollars. With out the full package 1,200. I'll take the 1,200 and save the other 200 dollars for a second video card.
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 10:53:23 PM

Herr_Koos said:
Can't you spell Microsoft..?

An important difference between OEM and retail Windows that I don't think someone else mentioned yet: If you buy retail, you can choose to install 32bit or 64bit, i.e. you get both options. OEM has to be one OR the other, and if you re-install later, you can't change it.


I don't believe that is the case. My understanding is the OEM version simply comes with one disk or the other, but not both like retail. However the key is interchangeable.
a b $ Windows 7
September 12, 2011 11:05:53 PM

Herr_Koos said:
Well then you'll have to buy something... There is no option besides Windows 7 right now. 7 is the new XP in my opinion; it will not become outdated any time soon.


There is no comparison between the two. Windows 7 is about to be eclipsed already and it will lose security updates on all version except pro in 2015. Unless something really special happens, 7's legacy will be that was better than Vista.

At last report, it still had not exceeded Xp's install base. And XP hasn't been the flagship in almost 5 years.

All that said, it should remain serviceable through 2015 at least since one would expect it to have a NT 6 core and would therefore be compatible with Windows 8 for the foreseeable future.
September 12, 2011 11:49:04 PM

Go for linux.
a b $ Windows 7
September 13, 2011 7:21:45 AM

FALC0N said:
There is no comparison between the two. Windows 7 is about to be eclipsed already and it will lose security updates on all version except pro in 2015. Unless something really special happens, 7's legacy will be that was better than Vista.

At last report, it still had not exceeded Xp's install base. And XP hasn't been the flagship in almost 5 years.

All that said, it should remain serviceable through 2015 at least since one would expect it to have a NT 6 core and would therefore be compatible with Windows 8 for the foreseeable future.


XP's legacy is Microsoft's own fault. They were too late in delivering an operating system that people wanted to move to rather than stay on XP. Vista was shunned due to bad press, and in contrast 7 has been almost universally praised.

What we've seen from Windows 8 so far looks very different from 7 in many respects, to such an extent that I believe people will be hesitant to upgrade, especially so soon after finally ditching XP for 7. So I wouldn't pay too much heed to the 2015 date; XP has shown that an OS can stick around long after MS wanted to throw the kill switch.
a b $ Windows 7
September 13, 2011 12:52:08 PM

Have to aggree with Herr_Koos assessment.
(1) A large percentage of sales fall into to two catagories: (A) corporations, and where I work they did not switch over to from XP to win 7 untill this year. (B) New systems that are preloaded. This tends to push out the switch. The lenght of time that a user "Need" to upgrade his/her computer has increased. The majority do not fall in that catagory of "Must have the fastest/latest greatest" computer and the computing power currently out strips the needs. For the private sector, other than Gaming, and the average corporate needs (excluding scientific and thoes that really need the horsepower) there is little need to upgrade outside of a five year replacement.
a c 209 $ Windows 7
September 13, 2011 3:01:38 PM

Herr_Koos said:
What we've seen from Windows 8 so far looks very different from 7 in many respects, to such an extent that I believe people will be hesitant to upgrade, especially so soon after finally ditching XP for 7.
I agree with the latter portion of your statement, but want to comment on the first portion. Microsoft's been giving a lot of press to the new tablet interface in Windows 8 - to the point where it almost seems as if it will be the ONLY interface. But this is untrue - Windows 8 will continue to use the standard taskbar-and-windows interface on laptops and desktops. It's really not as huge a change as a lot of people seem to think.

How well Windows 8 will be accepted in the laptop/desktop market will have a lot less to do with the user interface and a lot more to do with whether it offers any convincing features that make it worth the upgrade. But even with compelling features, I agree with you and RetiredChief that upgrade cycles will dominate it's acceptance rate. Corporations, in particular, are widely adopting Windows 7 and it seems unlikely that a majority of them would be ripe for another upgrade very soon.
a b $ Windows 7
September 13, 2011 3:04:00 PM

^True, the standard Windows desktop is still there; I was aware of this. Now for the tricky question, which ties in to what you mentioned: How different will W8 be from W8, and will it be worth the upgrade?
a b $ Windows 7
September 13, 2011 8:12:26 PM

Herr_Koos said:
XP's legacy is Microsoft's own fault. They were too late in delivering an operating system that people wanted to move to rather than stay on XP. Vista was shunned due to bad press, and in contrast 7 has been almost universally praised.

What we've seen from Windows 8 so far looks very different from 7 in many respects, to such an extent that I believe people will be hesitant to upgrade, especially so soon after finally ditching XP for 7. So I wouldn't pay too much heed to the 2015 date; XP has shown that an OS can stick around long after MS wanted to throw the kill switch.


Vista was shunned because it wasn't very good. 7's greatest achievement is that is replaced Vista.

And you should pay heed to that 2015 date. XP got a reprieve because it was the flagship for so long and still owns a plurality of the OS market, half a decade after it was eclipsed. 7 wont have that luxury.
a b $ Windows 7
September 13, 2011 8:14:31 PM

RetiredChief said:
Have to aggree with Herr_Koos assessment.
(1) A large percentage of sales fall into to two catagories: (A) corporations, and where I work they did not switch over to from XP to win 7 untill this year. (B) New systems that are preloaded. This tends to push out the switch. The lenght of time that a user "Need" to upgrade his/her computer has increased. The majority do not fall in that catagory of "Must have the fastest/latest greatest" computer and the computing power currently out strips the needs. For the private sector, other than Gaming, and the average corporate needs (excluding scientific and thoes that really need the horsepower) there is little need to upgrade outside of a five year replacement.


I agree with your point here, but thats not what he said. He said 7 was the new XP. The only thing they really have in common is people liked both.
a b $ Windows 7
September 13, 2011 8:25:37 PM

Time will tell, I suppose.
a c 209 $ Windows 7
September 13, 2011 10:14:21 PM

FALC0N said:
He said 7 was the new XP. The only thing they really have in common is people liked both.
I think when people say "Windows 7 is the new XP" what they usually mean is that it will be another Microsoft OS that hits a new highwater mark in terms of popularity. In that regard, I agree.
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