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Micsosoft EA / SA -- barebones machines ?

Posted on 2014-03-07
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Last Modified: 2014-03-25
We have a Microsoft EA / SA where we purchased the software and 3 years of upgrade rights.

Is the below doable ?
   1. did the purchase
   2. two years into it a 1Ghz, 4GB ram machine dies
   3. I replace the machine with a new barebones 3Ghz, 6GB ram machine and install Win7

If not, what is doable ?
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Question by:finance_teacher
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by:magarity
ID: 39914062
It's not clear what you are asking about doing.  Do you mean to ask if you may install microsoft enterprise licensed software on a new computer when the old one is no longer functioning? The answer is yes to that.
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by:finance_teacher
ID: 39914149
Yes, that is the question.

Can I still do that if I don't renew my EA / SA after it expires ?

Example
   1. purchase EA / SA for 3 years, upgrade machine to Win7
   2. Win8.1 comes out in the last year of my EA / SA agreement,
        but I don't upgrade my machines since I did not have time
   2. one year after my EA / SA expires
        my 1Ghz, 4GB ram Win 7 machine dies
   3. I replace the machine with a new barebones 3Ghz,
       6GB ram machine and install Win 8.1 since this was
       LAUNCED during my 3 year EA / SA agreement
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magarity earned 500 total points
ID: 39914233
"Software Assurance" is just for buying upgrade versions. It's like an extended warranty.  GHz and Ram and whatnot don't matter in this case; a computer is a computer as far as they care.  You should still be OK for the original software on one computer which apparently was Win 7 in your case.  You would not be eligible to use SA to get 8.1 as the SA has expired.
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Expert Comment

by:colditzz
ID: 39914656
If you don't renew the EA/SA you must return all machines back to their previously licensed version.  The SA only applies whilst you are paying the subscription.
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Author Comment

by:finance_teacher
ID: 39914686
So the below would happen ?

 1. we purchase a 3 year EA / SA which allows us to upgrade old Win XP machines to Win7+
 2. we do some upgrades
 3. at the end of year 3 we do not renew
 4. we then have to downgrade all machines back to Win XP ?

If this is the case it sounds like we should have just purchased "bare-bones" machines with NO operating system 3 years ago, purchased the BOXED version of Win7, installed Win7, then when the machine dies I could install the license on another machine.

Just trying to find out what the real benefits of EA / SA are since my license will expire in 2 weeks.
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Expert Comment

by:magarity
ID: 39919629
This is getting confusing. I thought your SA was already expired.  I think you should consult Microsoft's volume licensing website and then their 800 number if that doesn't answer your questions: http://www.microsoft.com/licensing/  This is safer than relying on internet forums anyway since licensing infractions can be expensive.
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