What is Windows 7 N or Windows 8 N? How does the N differ from a regular version?

Posted on 2012-08-22
Last Modified: 2012-10-23
What is Windows 7 N or Windows 8 N? How does the N differ from a regular version?

For example, on my company's MSDN account I have seen that some of the software (such as Windows 7 and Windows 8) are available in what is called Windows 7 Professional N or Windows 8 Professional N.

How does this N designation make the software different than the regular Professional version of the operating system software?
Question by:Knowledgeable
    LVL 18

    Accepted Solution


    N is made for the EU market and does not include Windows Media Player.
    KN is made for the Korean Market and does not include Windows Media Player or an Instant Messenger.
    VL are volume license editions for business enterprise customers and uses MAK (Multiple Activation Keys) or KMS (Key Management Server) to activate.


    Author Comment

    I have noticed that the Windows 8 N version in Microsoft Action Pack doesn't require a serial number activation key.

    Why is that?

    Doesn't that mean that it can be installed an unlimited number of times if it doesn't need to be activated?
    LVL 18

    Assisted Solution

    It will require a key during the installation. You may not be looking in the correct place.

    Action Packs do not allow for unlimited times. You need to check your entitlement, typically it will only be a small number of installs.
    LVL 95

    Assisted Solution

    by:Lee W, MVP
    ... furthermore, just because a product may not require a key, does that mean you should ignore the license agreement that grants you only a limited number of machines on which it can be run?
    LVL 77

    Assisted Solution

    by:David Johnson, CD, MVP
    you need a product key to install the program.. you cannot get around this.  If you cannot get a product key then you are not entitled to the product..

    with my subscription it is 5 x windows 8N and 5 x windows 8 pro N

    Expert Comment

    Just FYI you can install Windows 8 without product key. Please see link below.

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