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  • Thanks.

    I am curious how this will work if you upgrade from 7 for free and a year or so later lets say your computer crashes, be it a hard drive failure or virus, what have you.  Will you be able to install Win 10 again for free?

    Chris 

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  • Good point Chris75, sure there are backups but what if you want to do a clean install. Will a key-finder program be able to get the key? Is it bound by OEM conditions or full aftermarket conditions?

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  • "Many companies used their Software Assurance rights to install the Enterprise versions of Windows 7 or Windows 8.x in the first place, so most of those users should be able to upgrade to Windows 10 for free using their new version rights as long as their existing SA agreement hasn't lapsed / expired."

    Please do not use the expression "for free" when referring to Software Assurance. It is neither free nor cheap. Stating that someone is getting something for free when a payment already has been done upfront is prety awkward.

    And please remember that many companies are paying Software Assurance since that thing that looks as an OS (WIndows 8) appeared, paying in fact for an upgrade they'll not use.

    For free? Thanks, I had a good laugh.

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  • Raise of hands.  Who here will be upgrading an operating system in a corporate environment instead of doing a fresh install?  

    I guess where I need clarity is, I think "upgrade" is being used in two different ways or just one way, but it implies the other to an IT target audience.  

    I think many of us are wondering, "Can we just start installing Windows 10 from scratch going forward because we have Windows 7 OEM stickers on our machines?"   Or is our only path to do so through an actual upgrade installation?  These are massively different scenarios.  

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  • Rui Meleiro wrote:

    Please do not use the expression "for free" when referring to Software Assurance. It is neither free nor cheap. Stating that someone is getting something for free when a payment already has been done upfront is prety awkward.

    Hi Rui,

    I can see how that one word "free" can be a loaded word, even if in the previous sentence we talk about how SA costs money and part of that cost and includes new version upgrade rights.

    I'm taking your suggestion and changing "for free by using their new version rights' to "by exercising their new version rights"

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  • Peter (Spiceworks) wrote:

    Rui Meleiro wrote:

    Please do not use the expression "for free" when referring to Software Assurance. It is neither free nor cheap. Stating that someone is getting something for free when a payment already has been done upfront is prety awkward.

    Hi Rui,

    I can see how that one word "free" can be a loaded word, even if in the previous sentence we talk about how SA costs money and part of that cost and includes new version upgrade rights.

    I'm taking your suggestion and changing "for free by using their new version rights' to "by exercising their new version rights"

    Thank you Peter, for clarifying that. It actually is not your fault, I really go mental when I read any hint that Microsoft is actually giving away anything to companies. I'm right in the middle of a negotiation with them, so I'm sure you'll understand...

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  • More information is needed regarding Volume Licensing.  The section on Volume Licensing only mentions Enterprise versions and says  "For those companies that don't have Software Assurance, Microsoft has not yet announced plans for a Standalone Windows 10 Enterprise option without SA."  

    Volume Licensing does not require SA and is also available for those who use Windows 7/8/8.1 Professional.

    For those Volume License users who are not using Enterprise versions or Software Assurance, how does the licensing upgrade from Windows 7 Professional to Windows 10 Professional Volume License work?

    Every time I try to search for information on this, I find articles that omit providing concrete details on the Pro (non-Enterprise) versions of Windows.

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  • The OEM question is really something Microsoft needs to clarify.

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  • Joe9493 wrote:

    Every time I try to search for information on this, I find articles that omit providing concrete details on the Pro (non-Enterprise) versions of Windows.

    Me too... agree that there is confusion around licensing, and I didn't want to definitely say something I can't confirm, but we'll update this article once there are some definite details coming from MS. 

    NonProf wrote:

    The OEM question is really something Microsoft needs to clarify.

    Agreed. Will update the post once they provide more information. This guide isn't perfect but I hope to evolve it over time as we learn more.

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  • Chris75 wrote:

    Thanks.

    I am curious how this will work if you upgrade from 7 for free and a year or so later lets say your computer crashes, be it a hard drive failure or virus, what have you.  Will you be able to install Win 10 again for free?

    Chris 

    I've been wondering this as well.  I like to format my computers at least every 12 months just to keep them clean and tidy.

    I'll still buy a license if required as i have with all the other versions but be nice if it was free forever :)

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  • Joe9493 wrote:

    More information is needed regarding Volume Licensing.  The section on Volume Licensing only mentions Enterprise versions and says  "For those companies that don't have Software Assurance, Microsoft has not yet announced plans for a Standalone Windows 10 Enterprise option without SA."  

    Volume Licensing does not require SA and is also available for those who use Windows 7/8/8.1 Professional.

    For those Volume License users who are not using Enterprise versions or Software Assurance, how does the licensing upgrade from Windows 7 Professional to Windows 10 Professional Volume License work?

    Every time I try to search for information on this, I find articles that omit providing concrete details on the Pro (non-Enterprise) versions of Windows.


    I second the above - What about us small guys with Windows 7 Pro installed?

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  • Neil8736 wrote:

    Chris75 wrote:

    Thanks.

    I am curious how this will work if you upgrade from 7 for free and a year or so later lets say your computer crashes, be it a hard drive failure or virus, what have you.  Will you be able to install Win 10 again for free?

    Chris 

    I've been wondering this as well.  I like to format my computers at least every 12 months just to keep them clean and tidy.

    I'll still buy a license if required as i have with all the other versions but be nice if it was free forever :)

    I was wondering the same thing as well. My assumption would be that it is tied to a Microsoft account like 8 was, therefore, if you wipe and reimage you should be able to get the installer pretty easily. 

    To be honest though, I'm probably just going to install the OS, drivers and a few essential programs and then clone the drive. It makes life a lot easier.

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  • Thanks, great write up. Clears lots of things up! :)

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  • Peter (Spiceworks) wrote:

    However, this free offer does not apply to all OS editions. It's only available to users of non-enterprise versions of the OSes above. 

    The definition of the phrase "non-enterprise versions" is unclear.  Does that mean "non-enterprise" (as in running at an enterprise) or "non-Enterprise" (as in Windows Enterprise Editions)?

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  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_7_editions#Main_editions

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_8_editions

    According to this, Windows Enterprise Edition is only available through SA, MSDN, and other volume license agreements. I'd have to assume that Home, Professional, and Ultimate would all be eligible for the upgrade to Windows 10, but I haven't seen anything that mentions the specific versions. It just wouldn't make sense to allow Home Edition and volume licensing versions to have the no-additional-cost upgrades, but punish those who paid more up front for Pro or Ultimate... The goal seems to be to get everyone to upgrade. 

    Also, RT gets completely ignored as well, adding more insult to injury for those people unfortunate enough to have fallen for it. 

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  • My question is will.

    All versions of Windows 10 have the ability to connect to a domain. Or will upgrades from 7 Home Premium be gimped.

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  • Win 7 home premium upgrade path: Will there be a Win 10 equivalent (Win 10 home premium?)

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  • Erik6041 wrote:

    Peter (Spiceworks) wrote:

    However, this free offer does not apply to all OS editions. It's only available to users of non-enterprise versions of the OSes above. 

    The definition of the phrase "non-enterprise versions" is unclear.  Does that mean "non-enterprise" (as in running at an enterprise) or "non-Enterprise" (as in Windows 7 Enterprise Edition)?

    There was a Microsoft disclaimer that pointed out specifically that Enterprise editions (meaning Windows 7/8/8.1 Enterprise) and RT editions have no free upgrade.  So, by omission, that implied that Professional should be eligible for the free upgrade, but that is too ambiguous.  Also, doesn't mention how Volume Licensed upgrades of Windows 7/8/8.1 Professional to 10 Professional would work. 

    C_J wrote:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_7_editions#Main_editions

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_8_editions

    According to this, Windows Enterprise Edition is only available through SA, MSDN, and other volume license agreements. I'd have to assume that Home, Professional, and Ultimate would all be eligible for the upgrade to Windows 10, but I haven't seen anything that mentions the specific versions. It just wouldn't make sense to allow Home Edition and volume licensing versions to have the no-additional-cost upgrades, but punish those who paid more up front for Pro or Ultimate... The goal seems to be to get everyone to upgrade. 

    Also, RT gets completely ignored as well, adding more insult to injury for those people unfortunate enough to have fallen for it. 

    Since there is no Ultimate version of Windows since Windows 7 Ultimate, it is also unclear what those users could upgrade to.

    Enterprise edition has also been available through Intune, but that is a subscription that would already allow upgrades to new versions.

    Enterprise edition  is also available as a standalone upgrade unbundled from SA last year.  So, now some businesses who didn't get Enterprise edition because they didn't want to get tied up in SA were able to just buy Enterprise directly.

    Lots of not-so-small enterprises choose Professional because they don't use Branch Cache, Bitlocker or Direct Access etc. because they have already standardized on third party VPN, encryption and other products or just don't have a need for it.  So, it is not just very small shops using Professional.


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  • Dreamwalkn wrote:

    Win 7 home premium upgrade path: Will there be a Win 10 equivalent (Win 10 home premium?)

    Yes, that would be the basic version of Windows 10 which would be equivalent to the basic version of Windows 8.1 with the silent "Core" edition in the name.

    Theborgman77 wrote:

    My question is will.

    All versions of Windows 10 have the ability to connect to a domain. Or will upgrades from 7 Home Premium be gimped.

    You have always needed to use Professional or above to join a domain.

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  • Chris75 wrote:

    Thanks.

    I am curious how this will work if you upgrade from 7 for free and a year or so later lets say your computer crashes, be it a hard drive failure or virus, what have you.  Will you be able to install Win 10 again for free?

    Chris 

    This is a very important question that we need answered.

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  • Joe9493 wrote:

    Theborgman77 wrote:

    My question is will.

    All versions of Windows 10 have the ability to connect to a domain. Or will upgrades from 7 Home Premium be gimped.

    You have always needed to use Professional or above to join a domain.

    Don't be so sure about that... This seems to be changing in Windows 10, at least to some extent.

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  • So I can take a Win7 box and change the hardware and it will not boot without a repair. How will that work on Windows 10 if it will become the last OS? I would love to be able to just transplant an SSD into a newer desktop and have it boot the first time.

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  • And please remember that many companies are paying Software Assurance since that thing that looks as an OS (WIndows 8) appeared, paying in fact for an upgrade they'll not use.

    


    Nothing wrong with Windows 8, it's faster and at least as stable as Windows 7.
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  • I already made some inquiries about, and does not seem to be so free and easy.

    Obviously this works for newer machines, not for the masses of computer out of warranty.

    This could lead to the decay of the warranty of the computer, in case of failure.

    Finally, I do not really want to be the guinea pig for any multi-billion dollar company.

    There's a saying: You have what you pay.

    When the manufacturer of my computer will propose a different operating system with the same warranty coverage and all necessary drivers, I will want try it.

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  • Thanks Peter and all the spiceheads for the above info. It is really helpful.

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  • I am curious as well with the upgrade paths available to Windows 7 Ultimate machines.  Windows 7 Ultimate included features that we use in a corporate environment, such as Direct Access.  Direct Access is only available on the Enterprise editions of Windows 8 and 8.1.  So, would I be losing this feature if I upgrade a Windows 7 Ultimate machine to Windows 10?  This will be a big no for me if that is the case.  

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  • Rui Meleiro wrote:

    "Many companies used their Software Assurance rights to install the Enterprise versions of Windows 7 or Windows 8.x in the first place, so most of those users should be able to upgrade to Windows 10 for free using their new version rights as long as their existing SA agreement hasn't lapsed / expired."

    Please do not use the expression "for free" when referring to Software Assurance. It is neither free nor cheap. Stating that someone is getting something for free when a payment already has been done upfront is prety awkward.

    And please remember that many companies are paying Software Assurance since that thing that looks as an OS (WIndows 8) appeared, paying in fact for an upgrade they'll not use.

    For free? Thanks, I had a good laugh.

    Well now, aren't you a haughty one. Tone down the sarcasm man.

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  • Ill be upgrading as soon as its available.  I'm doing this ahead of my users so that way I know what issues they will come across.  Then again I do follow directions so it might not help in the end.

    Also what happened to people using the 10 eval getting it for free as well?

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  • The whole re-install issue is a huge void that Microsoft seriously needs to clear up.

    I already have the issue of trying to get Windows 8 back onto customer machines that have had hardware failure. It ends up being more difficult than going through an IRS audit.

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  • Sorry to nitpick, but I think this:

     Instead launching a completely new OS every few years, they plan to continuously update Windows 10 going forward, adding new functionality as it becomes available. 

       

    Should read

    Instead of launcing

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  • Chris75 wrote:

    Thanks.

    I am curious how this will work if you upgrade from 7 for free and a year or so later lets say your computer crashes, be it a hard drive failure or virus, what have you.  Will you be able to install Win 10 again for free?

    Chris 


    Reload your licensed OS, e.g windows 7, install SP1 and then install the windows 10 update???
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  • "Windows 10 upgrade from non-genuine OSes

    At one point in time, there were rumors of of non-genuine copies of Windows 7 and Windows 8 being able to upgrade to Windows 10 for free.  While that statement is technically accurate, the version of Windows 10 you upgrade to will also be non-genuine."

    So you'll be able to pirate Windows 10? Directly from Microsoft? I'm sensing a catch there, for example, after a year (hypothetically) they can force you to pay for a genuine key? Or am I snatching at straws here?

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  • anton.v.schalkwyk wrote:

    "Windows 10 upgrade from non-genuine OSes

    At one point in time, there were rumors of of non-genuine copies of Windows 7 and Windows 8 being able to upgrade to Windows 10 for free.  While that statement is technically accurate, the version of Windows 10 you upgrade to will also be non-genuine."

    So you'll be able to pirate Windows 10? Directly from Microsoft? I'm sensing a catch there, for example, after a year (hypothetically) they can force you to pay for a genuine key? Or am I snatching at straws here?

    Your logic isn't far off, it could also lead to the ability for a 'penalty' to be assessed on the infringer of $<RANDOM AMOUNT JUST LOWER THAN WHAT THE COURTS COULD ASSESS> plus the cost of a legit key, even if the machine (or OS) you purchased was in good faith to be completely legit in the first place.

    Still a lot of small computer repair shops installing OS's using bogus keys out there.

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  •  

    Should read

    Instead of launcing


    Nope, it should read 'Instead of launching' ;)
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  • Johan L wrote:


    And please remember that many companies are paying Software Assurance since that thing that looks as an OS (WIndows 8) appeared, paying in fact for an upgrade they'll not use.

    


    Nothing wrong with Windows 8, it's faster and at least as stable as Windows 7.
    Nothing wrong with it...... except for that horrible user interface they choose to force on people despite being told how horrible it is. Not like a good UI is important or anything......
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  • Thanks Peter! Nice, concise, and to-the-point.

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  • shonolson wrote:

    anton.v.schalkwyk wrote:

    "Windows 10 upgrade from non-genuine OSes

    At one point in time, there were rumors of of non-genuine copies of Windows 7 and Windows 8 being able to upgrade to Windows 10 for free.  While that statement is technically accurate, the version of Windows 10 you upgrade to will also be non-genuine."

    So you'll be able to pirate Windows 10? Directly from Microsoft? I'm sensing a catch there, for example, after a year (hypothetically) they can force you to pay for a genuine key? Or am I snatching at straws here?

    Your logic isn't far off, it could also lead to the ability for a 'penalty' to be assessed on the infringer of $<RANDOM AMOUNT JUST LOWER THAN WHAT THE COURTS COULD ASSESS> plus the cost of a legit key, even if the machine (or OS) you purchased was in good faith to be completely legit in the first place.

    Still a lot of small computer repair shops installing OS's using bogus keys out there.

    I imagine there is no catch besides the one they already have in place for 'non-genuine' installs. If you install Windows 7 and do not activate it then it will yank your wallpaper and will put a little notice in the corner telling you that your 'non-genuine'. They also I believe still give you security updates, but I know they do not give you any feature updates.

    The other side of this is also they have said that most of their money is coming from new PC's. So I think this is them just finally admitting that it is a waste of time and money for them to fight small time stuff. I imagine in the background they will still be going after those rogue shops installing pirated copies in large numbers. In the mean time though, I think they see a benefit of getting users off old versions, no matter what way they do so.

    A finally note I thought about. If this is the 'final' windows and they are going to keep updating and adding new features as they go, they you can count on the 'non-genuine' installs not getting those new features as they come out.
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  • I think we should be okay for the most part. Since what Microsoft seems to be doing is linking everything to your Microsoft account. In the past I have been able to retrieve Windows 8 keys in the past by referencing my registered windows key with the company.


    Chris75 wrote:

    Thanks.

    I am curious how this will work if you upgrade from 7 for free and a year or so later lets say your computer crashes, be it a hard drive failure or virus, what have you.  Will you be able to install Win 10 again for free?

    Chris 


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  • Chris75 wrote:

    Thanks.

    I am curious how this will work if you upgrade from 7 for free and a year or so later lets say your computer crashes, be it a hard drive failure or virus, what have you.  Will you be able to install Win 10 again for free?

    Chris 

    Yeah I was thinking that myself. If I update to Windows 10 (From 8.1) and a year later the Windows 10 OS get's corrupt...where do I stand? will I need to purchase a disc or how would it be planned to get the OS back free of charge as I did originally?
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  • Tying everything to an account is fine and all, except for a majority of the non-technical users that I have experienced getting into Windows 8 have just went through and created an account with MS and never bothered to record any of the info, including the email address they used to set their account up. This makes it very problematic when trying to retrieve info to be able to reinstall the OS; strictly from a service provider POV.

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  • Regarding the free upgrade for home and whatever, I would be amazed if it's not similar to the $40 upgrade 8 had for the first year or whatever; you got a key.  I suppose it could be an account as well but I'd still guess a key.  I highly doubt they'd want you rolling back to 7 because your free upgrade machine blew a hard drive.

    Like many others, I'm very curious what users of Pro editions in the workplace (volume licensing and COA's) will have to do.  I would love to ditch 7; 8 would be a fine upgrade (yes, there's nothing wrong with it) but may as well upgrade to something current.

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  • But in a cooperate environment, it has no place without a Start Menu replacement. My users have work to do, learning a new home screen (that will be phased out in Windows 10) is a waste of time. I'll keep everyone on Windows 7 for another 6 months

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  • The thing I am really interested to see is, now that this is the 'last windows', how long before they put out and update and require you to buy the update?

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  • ManyHats08 wrote:

    So I can take a Win7 box and change the hardware and it will not boot without a repair. How will that work on Windows 10 if it will become the last OS? I would love to be able to just transplant an SSD into a newer desktop and have it boot the first time.

    I used to be a Macintosh fanboy, and one of the reasons is because you can do just this with Macs.  Its amazing.  It makes sense because all the hardware is preapproved and Apple have all the drivers for their hardware.  A video editor can have a desktop in his office and a desktop at home and use the same SSD in both.  It is soooo cool to see this in action.  I have a family member who showed me this and it was super neat.  It's what you would expect to happen...

    I agree that this should be something that Microsoft should support.  Maybe Satya will make this happen.  He sure is turning a lot of other stuff on its head.

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  • Agree with the challenges that come from the tying license to a Microsoft account.  That is something that would be nice as second option, not the primary option.

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  • Thanks Peter for putting this together.

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  • I realize that there are a ton of questions that Microsoft hasn't addressed when it comes to Win10 but, we will soon see Windows go the way is a subscription service. Much like Office 365 is offered as a subscription service, we'll likely see WaaS (Windows as a Service) soon enough. Realize that those who are paying for SA are already similar setup but for us little guys who buy licenses outright, this might be a game changer if that in fact comes true.

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  • NashBrydges wrote:

    I realize that there are a ton of questions that Microsoft hasn't addressed when it comes to Win10 but, we will soon see Windows go the way is a subscription service. Much like Office 365 is offered as a subscription service, we'll likely see WaaS (Windows as a Service) soon enough. Realize that those who are paying for SA are already similar setup but for us little guys who buy licenses outright, this might be a game changer if that in fact comes true.

    Definitely.  The real question, though, is that a good thing or a bad thing?  I mean, depending on the price of the subscription, your current refresh cycle, it could be a great deal or a very bad deal.  

    My next question would be:  If they do switch to a subscription based OS, how will support work with that?  Any help desk/phone tech support people here looking for a job?  Microsoft might be massively expanding soon.  The consumer market calling every time they can't connect to the internet or can't remember where they saved a file from three years ago sounds like an absolute nightmare to me.  And, if they do add support into the price to cover their massive expansion, it's going to make it very expensive for those businesses who typically only replace their hardware/upgrade their OS when the machine dies.  Don't even get me started on how images would work.   

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  • Windows 8 already allows you to image a SSD and boot for the first time, also I dont see anyone mentioning I think microsofts master plan. It will be free for the first year, but wont they go to the SAS module like their office product and charge monthly or anually for their OS?

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