Departmental Windows installations and the IU/Microsoft Campus Agreement

The information here applies specifically to IU departments, and not to students.

Under the IU/Microsoft Campus Agreement, IU has the legal right to "upgrade" a pre-existing Windows license, but does not have the right to grant a license. Thus, you can upgrade any copy of an older Windows operating system under the agreement. However, you cannot install a copy of Windows obtained from IU on either:

  • A computer running Linux that didn't ship with Windows pre-installed
  • A computer with a blank hard drive (that is, with no operating system installed, including Intel NUC devices)

You must purchase a Windows license before you may legally upgrade to a version provided by IU. By buying a computer with a version of Windows pre-installed, you are purchasing a Windows license. (This also applies to custom-built computers, and those with hard drives replaced due to the failure of the original.) You cannot omit the operating system from any computer you purchase, nor receive credit from Microsoft or its distributors, as a result of the agreement.

Because of the agreement, there is little reason to buy a computer that comes with software package bundles, since you can get free and discounted software through IU. Both institutional and personal purchases are authorized in this manner, so when negotiating a purchase, you may wish to ask the vendor to omit the applications (but not the operating system), and lower the price accordingly.

macOS qualifies as a previous version of the operating system for the purposes of this agreement; thus, you may install a version of Windows obtained from IU on a Mac; see this Microsoft brief on Volume Licensing (PDF).

Those affected by this policy need to purchase any retail copy of Windows from a vendor not associated with IU, or speak with the computer manufacturer about obtaining an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) copy of Windows. The ability to provide an OEM copy is completely dependent on the manufacturer, and it may not always be offered as an option. You can also purchase a retail copy of Windows with an educational discount through vendors such as CDW-G, GovConnection, or Dell; see ComputerGuide: Deals by vendor, recommendations, and common questions. Once a public retail or OEM copy of Windows is installed, your copy obtained through IU should work as intended.

Departments do not need to purchase Windows Server licenses with their new server hardware. Departments can obtain full versions without fee from IUware.

This is document bbev in the Knowledge Base.
Last modified on 2023-08-29 12:30:53.