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Cloning HP OEM Windows 7 Professional - Is it legal or not?

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  • Cloning HP OEM Windows 7 Professional - Is it legal or not?

    Customer has ordered 50 new HP desktops and they all have Windows 7 Professional OEM -license. Those machines comes preinstalled from HP and they are full of bloatware and there is no way that we will deploy them with this original installation.

    Those machines ship with HP branded Windows 7 OEM -media that can be used to reinstall the OS. When I use this HP media to install OS from the scratch, I dont need to enter any key. OS activates automatically when installed from this HP media to HP computer (checks the special portion of the BIOS on the computer to determine if that computer is elligable for the pre-installed licence). This HP media contains nothing but the OS so it's clean. No bloatware.

    I tested and installed one machine from the scratch with this HP media. Installed all windows updates. Sysprepped the machine and used imagex to take the image from this reference machine. Used imagex again to write this image to other machine. System starts after image deployment and sysprep is running. It goes to desktop and Windows is automatically activated.

    Everything seems to work and no activation issues.

    Now I'm thinking to use MDT 2012 and WDS to deploy this image.

    Do I violate against some license policy or something? Every machine has legal Windows 7 Pro license sticker.

  • #2
    Re: Cloning HP OEM Windows 7 Professional - Is it legal or not?

    That is definitely one for HP and Microsoft, but I would argue (based on common sense -- which both the preceeding are not always noted for ) that you are not doing anything you shouldn't.

    If, of course, you used the HP image on other brands you would be breaking something.
    Tom Jones
    MCT, MCSE (2000:Security & 2003), MCSA:Security & Messaging, MCDBA, MCDST, MCITP(EA, EMA, SA, EDA, ES, CS), MCTS, MCP, Sec+
    PhD, MSc, FIAP, MIITT
    IT Trainer / Consultant
    Ossian Ltd
    Scotland

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    • #3
      Re: Cloning HP OEM Windows 7 Professional - Is it legal or not?

      I've done this with Dell OEM. Microsoft's answer was we don't care, it's OEM so ask them about the licensing and Dell said it's fine so long as all of the target machines were purchased with the appropriate OEM license (which they were).

      However, as Ossian said, check with your OEM and with MS because I've in the past called MS's licensing hotline twice with the same question and got two polar opposite answers.
      BSc, MCSA: Server 2008, MCSE, MCSA: Messaging, MCTS
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      • #4
        Re: Cloning HP OEM Windows 7 Professional - Is it legal or not?

        Originally posted by cruachan View Post
        I've done this with Dell OEM. Microsoft's answer was we don't care, it's OEM so ask them about the licensing and Dell said it's fine so long as all of the target machines were purchased with the appropriate OEM license (which they were).

        However, as Ossian said, check with your OEM and with MS because I've in the past called MS's licensing hotline twice with the same question and got two polar opposite answers.
        This is the exact same answer we received from Dell.

        As long as your machines are licenced for the Windows version you are installing then all is good.

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