Which Windows license should I choose for my PC? What is the difference between an OEM and Retail license? Will my license remain functional if I change the motherboard or I change the hard disk?
In this article, we will focus on different types of Windows licenses.
It is the most expensive and the least restrictive.
The Retail license is not linked to the PC; if you change your PC or one of the components of your PC (motherboard, hard disk ... ..) you can install your copy of Windows and activate it using your Retail key after uninstalling it from your old PC.
However, you cannot use your key to activate Windows on multiple PCs at the same time.
To activate a Retail license, you can perform an online activation or phone activation with the confirmation ID you get by phone by calling the Microsoft Center.
To acquire a Retail license, you can either buy it in a box (with installation media, USB key or DVD installation), or buy it as download links that you receive by mail (without support 'installation).
It is the cheapest and the most restrictive.
The OEM license is generally intended for companies that manufacture PCs.
The OEM license is strictly related to the PC; if you change your PC or the motherboard of the PC or the hard disk, Windows will no longer be activated.
Volume licensing prices vary by type and quantity
Volume licensing keys are typically for organizations and businesses that need to install and activate Windows on multiple machines at the same time.
To obtain a volume license, the administrator must purchase a Windows OEM or Retail license for his server and update his existing OEM or Retail license.
To activate more than 25 machines, the administrator can use a local activation service within his network called KMS (Key Management Service).
The administrator must, therefore, install a KMS service on the server. All machines are activated via the KMS service and must be reactivated periodically twice a year.
If it is less than 25 machines, the administrator can use a MAK multi-activation service: each computer then logs separately and at one time to the Microsoft Activation Server to activate Windows.