Students: How to get Windows 7 legally at a discount or free

Thanks to Kevin. for the news tip

With many people wondering what the Windows 7 pricing will be and whether it will cost less, the same, or more than Vista, there are some ways you can legally get Windows 7 at a discount or even for free when the final version is ready later this year.

1. Between June 26, 2009 and January 31, 2010, any new computer purchased with Windows Vista will qualify for a free upgrade to Windows 7. So if you've been planning on purchasing a new PC in the near future, you should hold off just a little while longer.

2. Check and see if your school is with the MSDNAA or Microsoft Developers Network Academic Alliance. If they are, check with their specific MSDNAA site when the final version of Windows 7 comes out to see if they distribute it.

3. Check with Microsoft DreamSpark. This is a special site from Microsoft that gives out free software to people who have a valid e-mail address from any of the qualifying schools listed. It's possible they could put Windows 7 up there once it's released.

4. If you're in the US, Canada or Europe, and are in school, there's a site called Journey Ed that gives out software and other kinds of products at a discount. You just need to show them some kind of proof.

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66 Comments

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I got Windows 7 Professional for free through my university (via MSDNAA) because I'm studying Computer Science.

Signed up and verified the Journey Ed + DreamSpark package, but the MS servers are having trouble generating activation codes. Guess I'll have to wait.

CrimsonRedMk said,
Signed up and verified the Journey Ed + DreamSpark package, but the MS servers are having trouble generating activation codes. Guess I'll have to wait.

it took me almost a month till i got my activation email. hopefully this is not true for u

Microsoft is not so worried about lowering the price because it sells the most copies bundled in new PC's, and when people look at the price of a computer most of them don't realize that a good chunk of that money comes from Windows itself, they just think it's the price of the computer. Which makes Microsoft in a good position because OEM makers themselves are the ones who are going to be forced to lower the PC prices in order to sell them.

They should offer a "NO OS" option in more models, that will likely hurt Microsoft where it hurts the most, because it may increase piracy even more and also increase Linux adoption.

I really look forward to Windows 7 RC. At least I will get to use it for up to a year and than decide whether I want to move to the commercial release. I simply can not shell out the $299 dollars to upgrade to professional. I have multiple computers. It is doubtful they will have a small user site license.

I hope this is not the same for the majority of you. It really does seem to be a pretty solid release.

University students in Germany can get Office 2007 Ultimate for 52 € and Vista Ultimate for 56 € through the 'das wahre Office' (='the real Office' - got to love the MS marketing divsion) deal.
Windows 7 should be offered just as cheaply once it's released through the same deal.

I am waiting to buy a new PC, I'll wait for awhile so I can buy a new PC and get a free copy of Windows Seven later on. I bought Vista shortly after launch. I will NEVER do that again.

Plus waiting longer banks me more spending money!

I got a free copy of Vista Business just by running through a couple 45-minute interactive online training sessions (I can't remember what it was called). I hope they have the same kind of deal this time around!

In the vista era I knew a guy who had a test account of TechNet (he got it on a presentation from MS). So he used it to get lots of legal keys of Vista (home, business, ultimate) and Office 2007. He just needed to call to receive it. He was kind enough to share them (could be activated on 10 different PC's.) I still benefit from it, but if Windows 7 comes out I'm kinda screwed Hopefully I will get creative and find a solution by then.

SK[ said,]I can't imagine that's legal.

He obtained legal keys through a legal procedure. Unless he signed/agreed to something stating he could not share them with anyone then I don't see anything illegal here.

Hhmmm... the Terms and Conditions of a TechNet subscription will help you understand why sharing keys like that is illegal.

Or did you not bother to read it?

AnthoWin said,

yeah we get office and vista Ultimate for even lower than the US discounted prices. Might have to wait till Feb 2010 before Win7 pops up with the new academic year...

lower than US discounted prices?

AU
Office 2k7 - $75.00 AUD≈ $54.65 USD
Vista - $80.00 AUD ≈ $58.30 USD
Office Visio - $70.00 AUD ≈ $51.01 USD

US
Office 2k7 - $59.95 USD ≈ $82.27 AUD
Vista - $64.95 USD ≈ $89.13 AUD
Office Visio - $55.95 USD ≈ $76.78 AUD

Hey, you're absolutely right! I didn't believe it at first, but it really is a decent savings.

Due to its popularity, I can already see Windows 7 becoming the most pirated OS EVER. No matter how hard Microsoft tries to curb piracy we all know hackers will laugh at them and release a pirated version in abstolutely no time. The only way they can remedy this problem is by lowering the price, but is it gonna happen? I DOUBT IT. =[

I think given the current state of the economy they really should consider it. My guess is that they will actually increase the price slightly, however. This will make it difficult for many to actually buy legitimate copies of the product.

As for torrent sites...

I wounder if an alumni email address counts? :P (I'm guessing not) Ah well, I'll just have to pay like everyone else :P (hopefully the Home Premium edition isn't too expensive, should I decide to upgrade that is).

xXDestroyerGRXx said,
Does this count for european countrys?
Germany,Greece,Italy,France?

It worked fine for me (Greece)

microsoft could so easily prevent or cut down on piracy, if they didn't price windows at 200-300 pounds, Jesus

i would happily pay £50 for win7, and so would millions of others!!!

+1

I'd be happy paying anything up to £100 quid for any OS, but anything over that is pushing it. I know you can get Vista OEM for £120, but still. It's the principle of the whole thing!

I would happily pay $0.01 for win7, and so would billions of others!!!

Microsoft, why can't you set prices the way I like it?!

I'm pretty sure that Windows Server 2008 R2 will be on Dreamspark instead of Windows 7. Although, we still have the Ultimate Steal to look forward to.

thealexweb said,
I'm on DreamSpark and I can tell you it won't be going up on there, why? Because XP and Vista isn't there.

Yea I agree, it's all developer and programmer related software/OS stuff. So the Client level stuff probably won't ever be there.. They expect you to at least have a working OS on your own dime.

I see Windows 7 beta in my MSDNAA account. I read somewhere (don't remember where), that they plan to offer Windows 7 Professional through this scheme as it is best suited to that particular target market. A pity they don't offer Office 2007 Word, Excel or Powerpoint.

It makes sense to offer Professional. Plus now you get more out of it versus Vista Business.

Looks like they also posted the Windows 7 beta on my MSDNAA account as well. That's probably a first, posting betas there.

I've got hopes for it being offered by MSNDAA, but I doubt they will, somehow. However, they do offer XP Professional and Vista Business, so who knows. Time will tell.

Sam Symons said,
I've got hopes for it being offered by MSNDAA, but I doubt they will, somehow. However, they do offer XP Professional and Vista Business, so who knows. Time will tell.

I don't see why they woudn't

Sam Symons said,
I've got hopes for it being offered by MSNDAA, but I doubt they will, somehow. However, they do offer XP Professional and Vista Business, so who knows. Time will tell.


They will, perhaps not immediately after it's released though. We have Vista Business among other things atm.

Oh, Windows 7 will be on the MSDNAA at some point for sure. Maybe not right on release day (thought it depends on the school and all), but eventually it will be up there. If XP and Vista got up, then I can't see why Windows 7 wouldn't. More than likely, MSDNAA will offer the Professional version.

We got Windows 7 RC and Beta over MSDNAA (took a few days for the IT guys to put it in the local cache). And i presume the same will be for the RTM version and im also pretty sure it will be the Professional Version