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Wednesday, February 7, 2007
Home Versions Of Vista Forbid Virtualization
9:10 AM | Cord Kruse | 15 comments

Users of virtualization products such as Parallels and VMWare will have to pay a higher price if they want to run Windows Vista under emulation without violating the End User License Agreement. The EULAs for Home Editions of Microsoft's latest OS specifically forbid users from booting the software "within a virtual (or otherwise emulated) hardware system."

Although the more expensive Business and Ultimate versions of Vista do allow for virtualization it is not without restrictions. The EULAs state that if you run the OS within a virtual machine "you may not play or access content or use applications protected by any Microsoft digital, information, or enterprise rights management technology or other Microsoft rights management services or use BitLocker (Vista's data encryption feature)."

In a recent blog, Parallels head of marketing Ben Rudolph discussed the restrictions:

In short, this means that if you’re a user and you want to run Vista virtually, you MUST buy the highest end versions of Vista, or you’ll be in violation of the Microsoft EULA.

Here are the price points for each version:
Home Basic $199
Home Premium $239
Business $299
Ultimate $399

To me, this strategy could hold back users who embrace cutting-edge technologies like virtualization, which means they won’t upgrade to Vista. This means that Microsoft has effectively lost an upgrade customer (in the case of Windows PCs) or an entirely new customer (for Mac and Linux users).

Microsoft has a great opportunity to open their operating system to an entire market of Mac users who would never normally use Windows, and to ease the way for enterprises around the globe to upgrade to Vista.

Follow the link below to read more.

Parallels Blog: Vista And Virtualization

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