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Microsoft continues to break paradigms that have been entrenched for decades. If you are familiar with Windows licensing, you know that Windows is typically licensed on a per-device basis and as a perpetual license not a subscription. Well, you can kiss that paradigm goodbye. With the advent of Windows 10 Enterprise E3 and E5, Windows is now offered on a per-user basis and as a subscription. First of all, what is Windows 10 Enterprise?
Simply put, Windows Enterprise is a version of Windows When you buy a new PC, you have to choose which version of Windows 10 to install.
Here are the various versions available today:. The farther down the list you go, the more advanced features you receive. Below is a comparison of the security, business, and advanced features in Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise E3, and Enterprise E5. For a full comparison of these versions, go here or here. Client Hyper-V Device Guard. In other words, if you get a license for Home or Pro, then you can use that version of Windows forever.
Meanwhile, Windows 10 Enterprise E3 and E5 are only available as subscription licenses. In other words, you have keep paying the subscription fee each year in order to keep using them.
How do you get the Enterprise version installed on your device? What Microsoft has done here is impressively simple. The Windows 10 Enterprise feature set is now included in a Windows 10 Pro installation. But by default the Enterprise features are turned off. When you apply a subscription license for Windows 10 Enterprise to your Windows 10 Pro machine, those features turn on. If you subscription expires, those features turn off again.
Consequently, Microsoft is able to license Windows 10 Enterprise per user. The add-on license is subscription based, but the base license is perpetual. The add-on subscription license is user-based, but the perpetual base license is still assigned to the device. This is illustrated in the figure below. Notice how the Windows 10 Pro licenses are tied to the machines while the Windows 10 Enterprise add-on licenses are tied to the user:. And by the way, a subscription to Windows 10 Enterprise E3 or E5 includes the right to turn on the Enterprise features on up to five devices.
So in our illustration the user is applying a single subscription to multiple devices. Each of the base licenses need to be purchased separately, but the three subscription licenses in the illustration are included in a single subscription to Windows 10 Enterprise E3 or E5. Not a problem. Microsoft recently announced that even users with Windows 7 and Windows 8. In other words, your subscription includes the perpetual base license for Windows 10 Pro and the subscription add-on license for Windows 10 Enterprise.
So with Windows 10 Enterprise, you get a user-based subscription license for the Enterprise version. That said, there is also a way for you to get a device-based subscription license for the Enterprise version. There are two ways to do this.
The first way is to buy an upgrade license for Windows 10 Enterprise with Software Assurance. As long as you keep the SA subscription current, then you can keep using the Enterprise version. However, if your SA ever expires, you lose the Enterprise subscription but get to keep a Windows 10 Pro base license. A word of caution here: before you buy, you need to make sure you have a qualifying base license.
For example, a Windows 7 Home license does not qualify as a base license for Windows 10 Enterprise. To get more details, you can download a chart from Microsoft here.
The base license will be an OEM license , but you will purchase the SA through one of the volume licensing programs. Again, as long as you keep the SA current, you have permission to enable the Enterprise features. But if the SA expires, then you get to keep the base license for Windows 10 Pro. It is important to note that if you go this route then you can only enable Windows 10 Enterprise on that one machine. So in our illustration below, our user can only use Windows 10 Enterprise on one device, not multiple devices.
Also note that the Windows 10 Enterprise subscription is tied to the device not the user since this is an SA benefit not an E3 or E5 subscription :. As usual, Microsoft licensing is complicated, but I hope this helps shed some light on the subject.
If you have questions about Windows 10 Enterprise E3 and E5, you can check out these resources:. Close Search. Windows as a subscription? Windows licensed per user? You just blew my mind. Well … sort of. Notice how the Windows 10 Pro licenses are tied to the machines while the Windows 10 Enterprise add-on licenses are tied to the user: And by the way, a subscription to Windows 10 Enterprise E3 or E5 includes the right to turn on the Enterprise features on up to five devices.
Also note that the Windows 10 Enterprise subscription is tied to the device not the user since this is an SA benefit not an E3 or E5 subscription : As usual, Microsoft licensing is complicated, but I hope this helps shed some light on the subject.
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Steps to deploy Windows 10 Enterprise or Windows 11 Enterprise licenses for Sign in to the Microsoft Volume Licensing Service Center. Learn about deploying Windows 10 with Microsoft and how to use a free day trial account to review some of the benefits of Microsoft.
Windows 10 enterprise license office 365 free download.Windows products & resources
Mar 25, · Microsoft is a new offering from Microsoft that combines Windows 10 with Office , and Enterprise Mobility and Security (EMS). See the M Enterprise poster for an overview. For Windows 10 deployment, Microsoft includes a fantastic deployment advisor that can walk you through the entire process of deploying Windows Windows 10 Enterprise E3 in CSP provides a flexible, per-user subscription for small- and medium-sized organizations (from one to hundreds of users). To take advantage of this offering, you must have the following: Windows 10 Pro, version (also known as Windows 10 Anniversary Update) or later installed on the devices to be upgraded. The Windows 10 and Office Deployment Lab Kit is designed to help you plan, test, and validate modern desktops running Windows 10 Enterprise and Microsoft Enterprise apps, managed by Enterprise Mobility + Security. The lab kit is free to download and uses evaluation software. Get started for free Please select your experience.