Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Microsoft's Hyper-V Server 2008 for free?

Microsoft is giving away its Hyper-V Server 2008 for free. Below is the full article from SD Times.


I generally stay away from Windows reporting, as the vageries of Microsoft's licensing and distribution poilices are beyond me. I am the free software guy, here at SD Times. So it delighted me to find that there is, in fact, a free version of Windows out there. Can you believe it? It's actually included with the Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2. The package includes the core of Windows Server 2008, presumably packaged up by AIK. Not only that, but the license included with this package is quite different from other Windows packages.

First of all, this version of Windows checks its validity certification once in the first week. Then never again. And it has a 100 year grace period, so you really don't have to ever stop using it. According to the license included with the software, you can actually redistribute this ISO, as well! Can you imagine? A free Windows you can redistribute? Clause 5 of the XP EULA is gone, too, so you can presumably embed this OS, or even use it as a server for commercial purposes without owing Microsoft a penny.

Now, there are obviously Windows-things missing from this image, but the license says you can do anything you need after install, as long as it's only about managing systems. That's a wide berth for use, though: even Notepad can be used for management. Of course, you can't modify the disc image before redistribution. Or at all, really.

As the open source guy, it seems a bit silly that this is news, but evidently, this is all unheard of in Windows land.


Article: http://www.sdtimes.com/blog/post/2010/03/22/Have-some-free-Windows.aspx

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