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Reselling used SBS server

As an IT support company, we have started to replace some of our clients older SBS2003 servers with SBS2008, which obviously requires new hardware.

We are also finding that the cost of SBS2008 (and a server to run it) is prohibative to the very smallest of companies (of perhaps 3-5 users in size), and that as such they are unable to afford to move away from peer to peer networks to a server based solution.

Therefore, as a cost effective solution, I'm thinking that the 5 year old SBS2003 systems that we're removing from clients sites could be sold on to these smaller companies.

Obviously we would have to purchase / part exchange the SBS2003 server (and licencing) from the current owner, but is there anything in the Microsoft licencing that would prevent us reinstalling the OS (on the same hardware, so no OEM issues) and selling the server on?

Thanks

Mike
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TS_MikeH
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TS_MikeH
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1 Solution
 
MesthaCommented:
As far as I am aware, as long as the license goes with the machine, then it is fine.
However I cannot answer licensing questions - no one on this site can. You need to ask Microsoft and get the answer in writing.

Simon.
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TS_MikeHAuthor Commented:
Simon,

Thanks for your response, but why do you say that no-one can answer? Is it because users on this site are not allowed to, or because you feel that Microsoft licencing is so vague that it's best to ask them?

If it's the latter, someone may have already thought of this and gone down the 'ask Microsoft' route, in which case they should be able to advise??

Mike
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MesthaCommented:
Doesn't matter whether the licensing is vague or not.

If you sold the product and then someone audited the site and asked about the license, they would come back to you and ask how did you know it was legal? If you then said "because someone on a forum told me" you would be laughed at.
Even if someone else has gone down that route, you have no way of proving that person is telling the truth or has interpreted the response from Microsoft correctly.

The only answer that is valid is the one from Microsoft, in writing. Anything else is opinion, and is about as valuable as asking a man in the street what he thinks.

Simon.
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TS_MikeHAuthor Commented:
Simon,

Thanks again for the response, and I see your point.

However, I accept that I may not be able to prove that it IS ok from answers provided here, but it is certainly feasible that someone has gone down the same route and has been told by Microsoft that it is not OK, or indeed may have been referred to a specific clause somewhere in the licence agreement that forbids this. In that instance, reference to said clause would then save me the hassle of trying to talk to Microsoft as I'd know it's a non starter.

And whilst opinions are just opinions, I'd still be interested to hear from anyone who's done it, and hear their opinion as to why they think it's OK

Mike
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MesthaCommented:
The understanding I have always had is that OEM licenses are tied to the specific hardware - and as long as you leave the certificate on the machine and supply all of the media etc with that machine, it can be resold - or rather the license MUST be sold with the hardware. You cannot keep it and use it elsewhere.

A quick look around Microsoft's licensing documentation throws up this:

"The OEM license for the Windows desktop PC operating system is tied to the device on which software is first installed. Accordingly, customers may not transfer the OEM license to a third party without that device. As long as the license and device remain together, there is no limit to the number of times they may be transferred."

http://download.microsoft.com/download/0/C/2/0C26114A-81B4-460E-BFEB-1448CFB4A296/10.%20VL%20Brief%20-%20OS%20Licensing.pdf

That would tend to support my view.
The OEM license is issued to the hardware, not to the company.

Simon.
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