TechMicrosoftMicrosoft Reduces Licences for TechNet Professional Subscriptions

Microsoft Reduces Licences for TechNet Professional Subscriptions


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A really good way to test various Microsoft software offerings is with a TechNet subscription. You get a number of licences per product to test. Now Microsoft are reducing this number!


From February onwards, Microsoft will only provide 3 licences per Office product and 3 licences per Operating System product.

I assume this is to combat the misuse of TechNet for people wanting cheap software licences. The conditions for using TechNet licences are supposed to be for testing purposes, in a non-production environment and only for the duration of the TechNet subscription.

However, most people just buy a TechNet subscription and get access to multiple copies of everything often at a cheaper price than buying a single licence, and there really is no way for Microsoft to check up on the use.

Do you have a TechNet subscription? How do you feel about this change.

Andrew Edney
Andrew Edney
I am the owner and editor of this site. I have been interested in gadgets and tech since I was a little kid. I have also written a number of books on various tech subjects. I also blog for The Huffington Post and for FHM. And I am honoured to be a Microsoft MVP since January 2008 - again this year as an Xbox MVP.


  1. Glad I went with a Standard subscription instead. It’s too bad that MS is changing the number of keys in Professional to match the number of keys in Standard. I feel the only people this will really impact will be people that buy Technet subscriptions just to get a bunch of keys for popular software instead of buying individual retail copies.

    • Yeah, I agree Dave. I remember when they used to give 10 licences per version. Seriously, what does anyone need 60+ licences of Office for to test? 🙂

      • Exactly. I don’t think I’ve ever had more than 5 computers up and running and testing at the same time, so it’s not too much of a switch to do 3 at a time now.

        I think MS knows that people buy subscriptions to get around spending a lot of money. Since this move doesn’t cost them anything, and it might actually increase their profit margin a bit, I totally understand why they did it. Besides, if you really need to do a lot of testing, there’s always a MSDN subscription.

  2. This will be burdensome for many test environments – particularly those involving multiple virtual instances. I have ad problems with systems notifying me of invalid license while I am well under the unadvertised/rumored activation limit. This will only make that worse.

    The big problem with hacked licenses has always been from China and India those will continue unaffected.

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