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Tips for acquiring and upgrading to Microsoft’s latest operating system for your nonprofit or library

By: Ginny Mies

October 29, 2012

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How to perform a clean Microsoft Windows installation for your nonprofit or library with downloaded ISO files?

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TechSoup encourages you to download the installation software for your Microsoft Software Donation Program donations instead of having discs sent to you.

So you download the software from Microsoft's Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC) and find out that it arrives as an ISO file and you need to perform additional steps before you can use that file for installation. What’s an ISO file? Most simply put, it’s a single file containing all the data from a CD, DVD, or other disc, all in one.

Fortunately, it is not so difficult to work with ISO files. This article explains what you need to do. The article also helps you decide whether you need additional software or memory devices and provides links to lists of free software to help you manage them.

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16 USD
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Description: 

If you have a Windows 7 or 8 license, you can get a free upgrade to certain editions of Windows 10 directly from Microsoft until July 29, 2016. See Microsoft's How to Upgrade to Windows 10 for complete upgrade information.

Windows is Microsoft's desktop operating system. This description applies to the Enterprise edition, but you can choose to download and install either the Pro or Enterprise edition through the Microsoft Volume Licensing Service Center if you request this product.

This donation provides one Windows upgrade license. You should request one upgrade license for each computer you are upgrading. See the Product Use Rights Summary for Desktop Operating Systems for specific licensing details.

 

Which Versions of This Software Are Available

You can choose to download the current version or the previous version of this software. You can find out which version is the current one on the Current Versions of Microsoft Products page. In addition, you can download the software in 32-bit or 64-bit version and also any language that's available.

 

Benefits for Organizations

You should consider requesting Windows Operating System Upgrade if:

  • Your organization uses software that is not compatible with Windows 8.1, the latest edition of Windows
  • You need to upgrade a PC running an older version of Windows, and most of the computers at your organization are already running Windows 7

 

Upgrade License Only

Only certain editions of the Windows operating system qualify for upgrades under TechSoup Asia's Volume Licensing agreements with Microsoft. See the system requirements to make sure your device qualifies.

If your device doesn't meet the requirements for an upgrade product, you might be eligible for a full operating system license through Microsoft's Get Genuine Windows Agreement for Small and Medium Organizations program.

 

Major Capabilities

  • All Windows Pro capabilities: Windows Enterprise provides all the capabilities of Windows Pro, including a modern interface, apps, cloud integration, and enhanced security.
  • DirectAccess: Mobile workers can connect securely to your organisational network anytime they have Internet access - without the need for VPN. IT administrators using Windows Server can manage mobile computers by updating Group Policy settings and distributing software updates anytime the mobile computer has Internet connectivity.
  • Windows To Go: You can create a copy of an employee's Windows workspace on a USB drive. This allows employees to access a secure, bootable version of their Windows Enterprise desktop on another PC regardless of that PC's operating system. The device must meet Windows hardware certification requirements.
  • BranchCache: Your organisation's PCs can cache files, websites, and other content from central servers running Windows Server so that content is not repeatedly downloaded across your network. This can minimise network traffic between branch offices and the main office.
  • BitLocker drive encryption: BitLocker encrypts hard drives more quickly to protect sensitive data from being accessed by unauthorized users who come into possession of any of your organisation's computers.
  • Start screen control: Administrators can control the layout of the Start screen to ensure that certain apps are accessible and also to enforce consistency across all devices.

You can learn more about the latest OS' newest features in this article: What's New in Windows 10 >>

 

Important Volume Licensing Information

A KMS key requires at least 25 computers on a network for activation. If your organization has fewer than 25 computers, you should request a MAK from the Volume Licensing website after receiving this product.

 

Obtaining This Product

Installing this product requires you to download the software from the Volume Licensing Service Center and enter a license key. You can download any available version or language for your product. The license key allows you to install the product on as many computers as you have received licenses for. This quantity is specified in the email you receive from TechSoup after requesting this product.

Expect two emails:

  1. When your donation request has been approved, TechSoup will send a message to your organization email address. This email will confirm the number of licenses you have requested and provide information about how to use the VLSC once Microsoft accepts your license agreement. Make sure the email address in your organization details is up to date by visiting your account
  2. Microsoft will send an email welcoming your organization to VLSC. This email will indicate that Microsoft has accepted your license agreement. After you receive this email, you'll be able to follow the steps in the first email you received from TechSoup to obtain your donation through the VLSC.

 

Software Assurance

Under the Software Assurance program, you have the right to install any new release of products covered in the agreement during the term of your coverage.

Requirements: 

Hardware

  • 1-GHz (or higher) 32-bit (x86) processor
  • 1 GB or more RAM
  • 16 GB available hard-disk space
  • 1,366x768 (or higher) resolution display
  • DirectX 9 graphics device with Windows Display Driver Model (WDDM) 1.0 or later driver
  • DVD drive

Additional requirements to use certain features

  • For touch — touch screen
  • For accessing the Windows Store and downloading and running apps — Internet connection and Microsoft account (formerly Live ID)
  • For sound — audio output
  • For DirectAccess and BranchCache — Windows Server 2008 R2 or Windows Server 2012
  • For BitLocker data protection — Trusted Platform Module (TPM) 1.2 or 2.0
  • For BitLocker To Go data protection — USB flash drive

Product functionality and appearance might vary with system configuration.

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9 USD
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Description: 

Important Note:

Microsoft Get Genuine Operating Systems are only available to your organization once in your entire registration to TechSoup. That said, kindly make the most of this opportunity by either requesting for the maximum allowable quantity, or by adding in some extra licenses to your purchase, to make room for new computers that you may soon acquire.

The Microsoft Get Genuine Windows Agreement for Small and Medium Organizations offers full Windows operating systems, not upgrades, to nonprofits and public libraries who find themselves out of compliance with software licensing because of software piracy or other licensing issues.

This donation provides a full Windows Pro operating system license through the Get Genuine program to organizations that meet the eligibility criteria below. You should request one license for each computer on which you will install it.

 

Which Versions of This Software Are Available

You can choose to download the current version or the previous version of this software. You can find out which version is the current one on the Current Versions of Microsoft Products page. In addition, you can download the software in 32-bit or 64-bit version and also any language that's available.

 

Eligibility

This donation available only to correct scenarios in which an organization has an existing PC with one of the following operating systems installed on it:

  • Counterfeit, pirated, or otherwise illegal, unlicensed, or improperly licensed Windows operating system
  • The standard edition of Windows 8 or 8.1
  • Home Premium, Home Basic, or Starter editions of Windows 7 or Windows Vista
  • Home or Starter editions of Windows XP
  • Linux, FreeDOS, or other operating system

Once computers have genuine Windows, users can keep their current operating system up-to-date with the latest service packs and security updates by downloading them with Windows Update.

 

Benefits for Organizations

You should consider requesting this product if you need to install the latest Windows operating system on a PC that falls under one of the licensing scenarios described above.

 

Special Rules for Get Genuine Product Requests:

  • Eligible organizations may place only one request ever for Get Genuine products.
  • Requests for Get Genuine products may not contain any other products.

Note: Since Get Genuine products are part of the Windows Desktop Operating Systems title group, an organization's request for them will reduce the number of operating system upgrade products it may request in its current two-year donation cycle.

 

Software Assurance Not Included

Get Genuine products do not include the Software Assurance benefits that come with most other Microsoft software donations. If an organization installs a Get Genuine product, that product will not have the benefit of receiving a free upgrade to a newer version of Windows when it is released in the future. However, the Get Genuine product will provide a computer with a legal base operating system upon which Windows upgrade products that include Software Assurance benefits offered through TechSoup Asia can be installed. Additionally, organizations that request Get Genuine products will be able to downgrade their donation to earlier Windows OS versions at no cost through the Microsoft Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC).

 

Important Volume Licensing Information

A KMS key requires at least 25 computers on a network for activation. If your organization has fewer than 25 computers, you should request a MAK from the Volume Licensing website after receiving this product.

 

Obtaining This Product

Installing this product requires you to download the software from the Volume Licensing Service Center and enter a license key. You can download any available version or language for your product. The license key allows you to install the product on as many computers as you have received licenses for. This quantity is specified in the email you receive from TechSoup after requesting this product.

Expect two emails:

  1. When your donation request has been approved, TechSoup will send a message to your organization email address. This email will confirm the number of licenses you have requested and provide information about how to use the VLSC once Microsoft accepts your license agreement. Make sure the email address in your organization details is up to date by visiting your account.
  2. Microsoft will send an email welcoming your organization to VLSC. This email will indicate that Microsoft has accepted your license agreement. After you receive this email, you'll be able to follow the steps in the first email you received from TechSoup to obtain your donation through the VLSC.
Requirements: 

Hardware

  • 1-GHz (or higher) 32-bit (x86) processor
  • 1 GB or more RAM
  • 16 GB available hard-disk space
  • DirectX 9 graphics device with Windows Display Driver Model (WDDM) 1.0 or later driver
  • DVD drive

Additional requirements to use certain features

  • For touch — touch screen
  • For accessing the Windows Store and downloading and running apps — Internet connection, Microsoft account (formerly Live ID) and 1,024x768 (or greater) display
  • For sound — audio output

Product functionality and appearance might vary with system configuration.

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