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Are businesses permitted to run Microsoft 7 Home?

I just read through the EULA for Microsoft Windows 7 Home and have not found any reference that a business may not register nor use this operating system.   However, I have been told by our reseller that we may not purchase or run Home versions of the OS and remain within terms of the license agreement.

I have always understood (possibly incorrectly) that the 'Home' designation was referring to feature set - not licensing limitations.  For example, the Home version of the OS cannot connect to a domain.

Are businesses permitted to run these versions?  Where would this be documented if not in the EULA?
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Rob_Jeffrey
Asked:
Rob_Jeffrey
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Spike99On-Site IT TechnicianCommented:
I don't believe there are any licensing restrictions on Windows 7 Home: you could run that in a business setting for commercial purposes, if you want.

The feature set  itself will limit what you can do with it. Some professional software packages, like accounting software, require Pro, Enterprise or Ultimate.  You wouldn't be able to join a domain, either.  You definitely don't have the windows management tools you would get in the Pro or Ultimate versions.  You can't remote in to the PC using RDP: that remote logon feature is only included in the Pro, Ultimate or Enterprise versions of Windows 7. If you need that functionality, you'd have to go with a third party tool like TeamViewer, LogMeIn or GotoMyPC.

To get those extra features, I would upgrade to Windows 7 Pro if that's an option, but I don't think it's required by anything in the EULA.
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rindiCommented:
Besides what has been said already, you can't join windows home versions to an Active Directory domain. This would greatly restrict what you can do with it, and you wouldn't be able apply group policies from the domain etc, which would increase the work of your admins to keep things properly secured.
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
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License information provided here is "best efforts".  The comments of the respondents are based on interpretation of the license agreements and their knowledge of the particular laws and regulations in their geographic location.  Laws in your location may invalidate certain aspects of the license and/or licenses can change.  "They told me on Experts-Exchange" will not be a valid excuse in an audit.  You need to contact the license granting authority to confirm any advice offered here.

As far as I know, there is no licensing limitation to using Windows 7 Home in a business.  You cannot enable business class features on it such as Remote Desktop, Domain Join, or other non-Home features, but strictly speaking there is no prohibition on using Home.
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Rob_JeffreyIT/ProgrammingAuthor Commented:
I received confirmation today (after a lot of pushing) from our supplier that, no, there are no restrictions on companies or businesses that wish to run Home versions of Microsoft Software.

It only comes down to features - if a business only want or needs the features provided by the Home version, they are permitted to operate it.
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