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Windows 8.1 OEM vs Full Version

Hey guys,
Im really sorry if this is a stupid question but I couldn't find a straight answer that made sense to me. I am currently building a new computer and I can't figure out whether to get the OEM version or the full version of 8.1. What are the pros and cons of each? Whats the difference? Again I apologize if this is a stupid question, any help will be greatly appreciated!
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  1. With the OEM version, Windows is tied (forever) to the machine it is first put on. With the full retail version, as long as you remove it from the old machine, you can then put the OS on any new machine you build or buy. OEM is a lot cheaper than the full retail, which is why it is so often used by system makers.
  2. Wrong here is the info:


    With windows 7 OEM the license is tied to the first motherboard it's installed on.With Windows 8.1 (No more OEM versions) you can move it to another build when you are done with this one , but only one computer at a time.With Windows 8.1 you can change all the hardware you want including the motherboard.





    OEM versions of Windows 7 are identical to Full License Retail versions except for the following:

    - OEM versions do not offer any free Microsoft direct support from Microsoft support personnel

    - OEM licenses are tied to the very first computer you install and activate it on

    - OEM versions allow all hardware upgrades except for an upgrade to a different model motherboard

    - OEM versions cannot be used to directly upgrade from an older Windows operating system


    Microsoft.com ^


    OEM vs. Retail

    OEM Windows 7 comes preinstalled on computers. This is the cheapest way to buy windows. Large PC manufacturers like Dell, HP etc. (collectively called royalty OEMs) install windows on millions of such PCs. The main characteristics of such systems are:

    The license agreement and support agreement is between you and the PC maker, not MS.

    Activation by the end user is not required. Windows is preactivated at the factory by the OEM using images and standard SLP keys.

    Your copy of windows is locked to that PC. The license is not transferable.

    OEM system builder is what you get when you buy from say Newegg or from a local "white box" vendor. It too has the characteristics of Royalty OEM windows. Although it is possible for an individual to buy a System Builder copy, the license requires that the software be installed using the OPK (OEM preinstall kit) and then resold.

    Retail version is what you buy from a retailer like Amazon or Bestbuy. Its a full price version that comes packaged in a retail box with a retail product key. It has to be activated online via MS servers using the key on the box, it is not tied to the PC it was first installed on, though it can only be used on a single computer at a time. And, MS directly provides the support for it. It is also more expensive than OEM copies.

    As far as functionality is concerned, theres no difference between any of the versions above, given any specific edition (i.e. between OEM pro and retail pro, or between OEM ultimate and retail ultimate).

    sevenforums.com





    Windows 8 is a whole different ballgame.

    License agreement for the transfer of a Windows 8 license
    http://personaluselicense.windows.com/en-US/default.aspx
  3. Best answer
    EonW said:
    With the OEM version, Windows is tied (forever) to the machine it is first put on.


    With 8/8.1, that is no longer the case.
    If you buy it, and you install it, you can reinstall on whatever hardware you want. New motherboard, new PC, whatever.
    If it is preinstalled, then it is tied to that original motherboard.
  4. USAFRet said:
    EonW said:
    With the OEM version, Windows is tied (forever) to the machine it is first put on.


    With 8/8.1, that is no longer the case.
    If you buy it, and you install it, you can reinstall on whatever hardware you want. New motherboard, new PC, whatever.
    If it is preinstalled, then it is tied to that original motherboard.


    Thanks, I had not realised that there had been a change with 8.1 to the installation criteria. I was going by the old 'rules' up to Win 7.
  5. Win7 OEM is not tied to the first computer you install it on.

    If you change your platform, and install your old Win7 OEM license on your new computer, it will work.
    You just have to activate the license using an automated phone-service. Works like a charm ..
  6. Xigmatek said:
    Win7 OEM is not tied to the first computer you install it on.

    If you change your platform, and install your old Win7 OEM license on your new computer, it will work.
    You just have to activate the license using an automated phone-service. Works like a charm ..


    what do you mean? do you mean like from my old laptop that came with one I can use my laptop windows 7?
  7. USAFRet said:
    EonW said:
    With the OEM version, Windows is tied (forever) to the machine it is first put on.


    With 8/8.1, that is no longer the case.
    If you buy it, and you install it, you can reinstall on whatever hardware you want. New motherboard, new PC, whatever.
    If it is preinstalled, then it is tied to that original motherboard.



    Yeah.. That's not what it says on every disclamer you can see for example at amazon on the product page...
  8. Hey,
    I've been reading this thread, but I have one question. So could I buy the Windows 8.1 OEM to install on my pre-built Windows 7 PC? Would it work? :??:
  9. DragolinkFR said:
    Hey,
    I've been reading this thread, but I have one question. So could I buy the Windows 8.1 OEM to install on my pre-built Windows 7 PC? Would it work? :??:


    Why not just upgrade the OS through Microsoft?
  10. To clear up a response:
    You cannot buy "Windows 7 OEM" for your brand computer anyways.
    It is possible to buy an OEM Recovery disc (Dell or HP) and an inactive OEM COA separately then take your chances.

    Windows 8.1 OEM is very different. No COA sticker. Locked into a chip on the motherboard (not the BIOS).
    You could transfer the license to an identical motherboard.
    You CAN buy the System Builder version and do more steps to activate, and a COA sticker is included. It can be transferred, one use at a time. . Maybe that is what you meant by "OEM."
    Windows 7 will read: "Windows 7 Pro OA"
    Windows 8.1 similar.

    Another option is to try out Windows 10 for FREE as it is very similar to Windows 8.1.
    The only issue is drivers in the Preview or what it deems to download vs one particular driver you must have.
  11. Been doing it for years, all you need is an OEM disk to install oem windows key. Its not tied to anything just install and then call Microsoft to activate. There is no difference between full or OEM other than some extra support from Microsoft but really the best support comes from the smart people out there, just google it.
  12. You really do not know what you are talking about, you CAN buy windows 7 oem and you can buy a windows 8 oem disk which both come with a key and can be activated by calling Microsoft. Please stop pretending you know about this subject.
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