back to article Students get deep Windows 7 price break

With its deepest Windows 7 discounts yet, Microsoft is targeting students who might otherwise chose Apple. The company has announced qualified college and university students can obtain Windows 7 for just $30 in the US and 30 pounds in the UK. Students in the US can pre-order their copies from September 17 and download with …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Horns


    Going to be fair few students without 'genuine' copies of XP though! My university sold me a CD-R of Windows XP with a photocopy of the university's licence!

  2. Woodgar

    <insert title here>

    So that's £18 for Americans and £30 for us lot then.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I Dont get it

    If it's viable to do this for students to stop them getting "in bed" with linux or macs early on in their computer using careers, then why don't they do it for everyone.

    I'm intending to make my next home PC a linux one (yes of course Ubuntu) but if windows 7 was on offer for 30 quid, I might re-consider.

  4. Anonymous Coward

    $30 in the US and 30 pounds in the UK?

    They must be using Excel and run foul of one of the many rounding errors.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    Brits get shafted again

    "...obtain Windows 7 for just $30 in the US and 30 pounds in the UK."

    Since when was US$1 = UK£1? Yet more confirmation that Microsoft does indeed practice daylight robbery. Why do people still do business with these sharks when they are confronted with blatant proof like this?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Cool, my Macbook Pro will run Win7 quite happily

    Bootcamp here I come

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up


    Sounds like a good deal to me, although the fact it's only an upgrade is a bit disappointing. Not sure if all the hardware changes I've made since buying Vista OEM will cause it to not activate (currently running w7 RC). It'll be fun to see if you can install it over an unactivated OS though.

    That said, I've already got one of the £50 pre-orders but I don't necessarily trust it, I got it from PC World and either they had thousands more copies than everyone else or they over-sold. Seeing as they didn't take any money, I don't know if I can hold them to the price come release day - will have to get on the phone...

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up


    The missus is still at college and registered with the student union, could be a nice chance to have a play with Win7 on the cheap!!

  9. DT


    Yes, because those who are most motivated by discounts are generally those with the least amount of cash, which makes sense since they're students... yet you're trying to tell me they're more likely to choose Apple?

    You do realise the inherently poor logic in this statement?

  10. Piro Silver badge
    Thumb Down

    $1 = £1 once again

    Glad to see they didn't bother to check the exchange rates, when in reality it should be 21 quid, even with VAT.

  11. MacRat

    Not very many Colleges

    That list is a bit small.

    For example it doesn't included the biggest schools in Indiana (Indiana & Purdue Universities) nor does it include the University of California.

  12. Anonymous Coward

    Bloody Microsoft

    "...only available to students wit a valid copy of Vista/XP..."

    They just can't resist making everything they do into a fucking piracy test.

    I was interested, but now I'm not because - I wouldn't pay £90 for XP so I downloaded it for free.

    Fuck Microsoft.

    I'll stick with my Linux and Macs thanks - neither of them presume I'm a criminal from the outset (however accurate that assumption may happen to be in this instance).

  13. Anonymous Coward

    Tough Choice

    So.. a student can either:

    1) Pay $30 and wait ~5 weeks to download Windows 7


    2) Go to the MS Dreamspeaks page & download Windows Server 2008 R2 (the server version of Windows 7) *PLUS* a whole slew of other MS software *NOW* for *FREE*

    Gee, what a tough decision...

  14. Andy Pellew

    Conversion rate ...

    It's that pesky $1 = £1 conversion rate popping up again ...

    I will never understand why big companies do this stuff, don't they realise the massive negative publicity it gives them??!!

  15. Anonymous Coward


    No UK student is gonna get validated then, given that all UK educational institutions are, not .edu. Understanding of market FAIL.

    If it's £30, and you require an existing genuine copy of XP or Vista, that'll be an upgrade edition then, won't it? Rather devious that they didn't mention that in the first place.

    And what's with the pricing? $30 does not equal £30! Even if you take into account an average sales tax of 8%, $32.40 is just shy of £20.

  16. Blain Hamon
    Paris Hilton

    Able to run?

    "In the US, Microsoft said students are eligible if their PC is able to run Windows 7."

    So if a student has an Intel-based Mac and no Windows, they still qualify for the $30 upgrade?

  17. Anonymous Coward

    wow, just wow.

    Some of the flames here are pretty awesome. £1=$1 is a pain in the ass, but when you're getting such a huge discount does it really matter? Maybe if they were selling full priced retail packages and using that annoying conversion, you'd have a point.

    And about the .edu email address thing, on Microsoft's site they do say somehing along the lines of "e.g".

    Are you going to label that as "Fail" again because nobody gets their first name as their email address, it'll always be something like Seriously, M$ (sorry, M£) haven't got a clue have they?

    Sigh. It seems the only way some of the trolls here will be satisfied is if MS give it away for free, or going further and paying you to install it. No wait, that'll be labelled as bribery won't it?

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Student discount -great

    Yet another student discount. Why do students get all the breaks? All they do is spend four years getting pissed and having sex. Why should they get all the freebies?

  19. John Carter 1

    you forget VAT

    You forget that they never quote VAT on US prices, because it changes from state to state.

  20. BobaFett

    XP must die

    It's certainly a great strategy for increasing Windows 7 uptake in a bid to kill off XP. But I imagine most students will turn to pirating the next version of Windows when they find out how much an upgrade costs and they're only earning a graduate salary!

  21. Anonymous Coward

    Why do Brits get the worst deal?

    Not only in Britain do we have to pay $1=£1, which is extortionate, but also, we have to have a validated version of Windows XP/Vista.

    I am a student and I could not afford to buy Windows and was looking forward to this to getting a legit version. Now, I think I will stay with my pirated version! If Micro$oft really want to get students using legit versions, then get them Windows 7 for the price without having them needing a legit version of Windows. This would have been my chance to go on the straight. All the other software on my computer is legit, it's only Windows XP that isn't.

    In other words, it is a total and epic fail.

  22. Alastair McFarlane

    @AC 9.59

    Students spend 4 years getting pissed and having sex? Why did no one tell me this before I graduated this year??? Dammit!

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I was considering switching to Ubuntu or similar, but have been holding back for two reasons:

    1) My current, working nicely, set-up is an old TV for, well, TV/DVDs etc and a widescreen monitor for working at the PC (in different rooms). How can that possibly meet X's bullshit "square" virtual desktop demands? I'm going to be left with one that wants to scroll about and that is just utter shit. Why can't Linux get decent multi-head support like Windows has (it's one of the very few things Windows does better that Linux I.M.E.)

    2) Lack of decent printer support (i.e. no Lexmark drivers). Yes, I know this is not the "fault" of Linux, but no Linux drivers means no Linux drivers.

    The other half is a Uni student...I wonder if she will qualify for the Windows 7 deal? UKP30 is tempting...

  24. Andy Scott
    Gates Horns


    Exactly how many colleges and universities give out email address and to how many students. I mean does someone doing nursing get one? It could end up as a good idea in theory, but in real life not so.

  25. bondspice

    Family pack?

    Now with any luck the next thing will be a Windows 7 Family Pack

  26. Chris Fox
    Gates Horns


    So, Microsoft is "generously" offering a discount on what in many cases will be the *third* OS licence covering a machine? What a bargain!

    Many institutions have corporate MS licences that allow students to install any version of Windows, and other software, at no additional cost. So students may be mislead into paying something for which Microsoft has already been paid, in additional to any licence that came with the machine. Or do you suppose that Microsoft will check the students' email address and tell them when they are already covered by an educational licence?

    I think it is already bad enough that MS collects two licences for many machines under in corporate use: one that came with the machine, and an institutional licence to permit the use of a common OS image, without which it would not be feasible to manage the hairball of an OS .

    @AC 08:40 GMT: it has always been Microsoft's "education" policy to get them while their young, so that using Microsoft becomes a life-long habit which they will keep feeding once they are earning money and making spending decisions. It's a classic dealers' (fake) "introductory offer".

    In many cases this will be the first Microsoft licence that the students in question will have bought with their own money. Microsoft UK once had a head of "education" strategy who made no secret of the fact that her remit had absolutely nothing to do with education as such, but was concerned exclusively with the generation of future sales to future wage earners. This is why they go to such great lengths to stop schools around the world from moving away from Microsoft. The current offer is an integral part of this strategy: it weans future customers off the "free" stuff (previously paid for by schools and parents) while making additional MS profit.

    @AC 07:24 GMT: I see that the article has been quietly edited since it was posted, correcting the UK addresses to from .edu. This has the unfortunate side-effect of making your comment look like a FAIL, when it really was the article.

  27. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: Scam

    "Quietly edited"? Yes. Should I have done it loudly?

    I had to moderate approximately 60 comments this morning pointing out that one snafu. It was fun to read all the variations, until I became aware of the sound of someone sobbing with a strange animal tone, and then realised it was me.

    Interestingly, at least ten of these leapt to the conclusion it was a deliberate dick move on the part of Microsoft to make it difficult for UK students to get the discount.

  28. Alastair McFarlane
    Paris Hilton

    @Sarah Bee

    CAPS is the way to go!

    I may not have thought that, but you have to admit that would have been *really* funny if they had (oh, and terrible of course)

    Paris does things loudly...

  29. Mark 65


    "Lack of decent printer support (i.e. no Lexmark drivers). Yes, I know this is not the "fault" of Linux, but no Linux drivers means no Linux drivers."

    Never had a problem with a Canon, HP or Epson. Maybe you should get a decent printer - aren't Lexmarks equipped with some nasty little "thou shalt not use 3rd party cartridges" chip?

  30. Adam 10

    Wah-wah. The world owes me a living.

    "I was interested, but now I'm not because - I wouldn't pay £90 for XP so I downloaded it for free." etc etc ad infinitum. If you don't want to pay for Windows, don't buy it. Use Ubuntu, it's pretty good and very free.

    The upgrade here costs £30, if you don't already HAVE Windows then how do you expect to upgrade it? Do you walk into Tesco and eat the "50% free" out of food packets too?

    Perhaps those who have the above view are an exception to the rule and honestly would have gone legit if it was only £30. But there has always been a common view that one shouldn't have to pay for Windows. Even when I was at school, people were copying Windows 3, then Windows 95 etc.

    Yet, very few people would say it is acceptable to walk into PC World and take a PC for free, or order the components over the internet with a stolen credit card. Why is copying software any more acceptable?

    Don't give me the "But I wouldn't have bought it anyway!" argument... you are going to considerably more effort to download or copy Windows than you would to legally download a free copy of Ubuntu or other free Linux! That's before you even get to the yearly need to find a new serial no. or crack because the latest Windows updates made your illegal copy stop working.

  31. Alastair McFarlane


    Ahh Lexmark. How you've been the bane of anywhere I've been that used you, Linux or no-Linux!

    Shall we drink to Canon, HP and (perhaps to a lesser extent) Epson?

  32. Fred Tourette
    Gates Horns

    Drug Dealers at the Playground

    An A.C. writes, "Yet another student discount. Why do students get all the breaks?"

    By that comment I presume you mean Office Student & Teacher Edition, etc.

    Because the first hit is (almost) free. Hook 'em in school and they'e hooked for life. Not that it's a done deal - Apple tried that way back, and all the kids found out was once they left school, it was a Windows world.

    When you have Microsoft's deep pockets, you can afford to give away something nobody wants, or cares that much about otherwise. It worked - in part thanks to the failure of the U. S. Department of Justice - splendidly for IE v. Netscape; the rest is history.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up


    At my uni I wasn't doing a IT related course but made up a valid sounding reason on the online MSDNAA form (say you need to write a program to model some data) and they were more than happy to sign me up.

    Now I have a free licence for both 32 and 64 bit Windows 7 Professional.

  34. Anonymous Coward

    @Mark 65

    I do not have a Canon, HP or Epson. So you are telling me that an "upgrade" to Linux will cost me UKP200 or so? Cheaper to buy Windows 7 in that case. And, of course, get proper multi-head support into the bargain.

    As for the cartridges, Lexmarks can use generic cartridges. However, certain re-badged Lexamrks (company name sounding like "Smell") will not accept generics due to changes in the design.

    I would rather switch to a Linux distro...but there just isn't one out there that suits my needs and too many minor, but required feature, short-comings.

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm Shocked At some of you lot

    complaining that it's not a good enough offer because you currently don't own a legal version of XP or Vista...If you can't afford the fuck all money (£60) it cost to get an OEM copy of XP Home then you have failed in life. But then you're comment also proves it.

  36. Anonymous Coward

    Ours get it for free!

    Here in Electronics and Computer Science at the University of Southampton, all our students get Windows 7 Professional for free. 32-bit and 64-bit versions.

    And they can download and install it *now*. No need to wait for the retail release at all.

    Sounds rather a better deal than £30 and then wait a month!

  37. N2

    Dear Mr Ballmer

    Even though our country has been completely fucked up by a half wit with one finger up his nose that cant add up, the exchange rate is still a considerable way from $1 = £1

  38. Mike 140

    erudite commentary

    as ever, from

  39. Michael 10

    Neighbours up top

    Once again a US company forgets that there are 33 million people just a little to the north, you'd think it would be easier to get us in on the deal than the UK...

    Although I think I will be able to get it free from either my school or my student IEEE subscription. But still.

    And no I won't use linux, I'm not a huge fan of the 2 hour battery life reduction that comes with it one my 901.

  40. carlleigh

    Who is supporting the new Window 7

    First anonymous@cowturd am using a Lexmark C532n color laser and Ubuntu's 8.04 through 9.04 + various netbook remix's. Not a problem. Exactly how long has it been since you actually used or tried Linux.

    Second who supports this cheap Windows 7. Is this a way for Microsoft to get Windows 7 on computers that the manufactures/OEM's know will not work and do not wish to support.

    If you buy a computer from an OEM with an OEM copy the OEM supports Windows/Drivers and all. If you upgrade through the OEM they still support you Windows/Drivers and all. If you buy from Microsoft then Microsoft will be supporting you. (What do they know about drivers for your computer.)

    Sound like a snafu all around. This way Microsoft gets the OS on your computer and when it doesn't work says it the manufactures fault. When you contact the manufacturer they tell you its Microsofts fault. They didn't sell you the OS after all and yes they have no intention of upgrading the drivers.

    1. Best to buy a new computer and still pay next to nothing for the OS. 2. Test release candidate first before making any upgrades.

  41. TeeCee Gold badge

    @Mark 65

    Will that be the same "thou shalt not use generic cartridges" chip that causes mine to throw a wobbly, threaten the End Of The World As We Know It and generally sulk, throwing "out of ink" errors every five minutes, when presented with anything other than the vanilla item?

    Oh, did I forget to mention that it's an Epson?.......

    It does play nice with Linux though. I'll give it that.

  42. Sly

    "proper multi-head support" in windows

    right. In windows, multiple monitors have a problem. Games cant stretch across them. Same with movies. This can be fixed in windows with ati's new eyefinity tech:

    But Ati has to fix(trick) windows to work that way. Linux has no such hangups.

    Proper muti-head support my a$$!

  43. Barry 13
    Gates Horns

    Only worth it because Vista is so sh*t

    Hopefully I'll get a chance to take this offer. 30 quid seems like a bargain to get away from Windows Vista on my laptop.

  44. Chris 12

    Campus agreement is better value

    What's the point in students buying WIndows 7?

    Most of them in the UK can get upgrade versions of Windows and several full MS apps for the cost of 'media' (£5-£10) via the Campus Agreement.

    This and all the other deals that MS is having for W7 smack of desperation...

  45. Richard 102
    Thumb Down

    List of schools

    So, let's look at the schools in the Big Ten (*). These are big schools, outside of Northwestern (which has an enrollment larger than some state universities).




    Penn State

    Ohio State


    Michigan State








    And a quick, cursory look give the same (or very similar) for the ACC schools, Big 12 (Texas was there), SEC, Pac-10, ...

    Most of them are 'directional' schools, community colleges, and places that sound like either small hippy schools or suburban housing developments.

    In other words, this is pretty much a no-go for 90% of the college students out there.

    (*) Yes, it is 11 schools, but let it go.

  46. Richard 102


    "Once again a US company forgets that there are 33 million people just a little to the north, you'd think it would be easier to get us in on the deal than the UK..."

    Not until you apologize for Celine Dion, William Shatner, and Brian Adams.

    (And just to warn you, I've got an Ann Murray reference and I'm not afraid to use it.)

  47. pchad

    Reason the big ones aren't on the list

    I have two kids at schools (one of them is Big Ten) in the US that aren't on the list. They aren't on the list because there is a second (unpublicized?) program where the school can distribute FREE copies of W7.

  48. ElReg!comments!Pierre

    @AC about multihead and printers

    "1) [Linux doesn't do multihead]"

    It does. I am fairly confident you could dual-display on an HDTV and the screen of you new Casio watch, should the need arise. Of course your graphics hardware needs to be able to do it, but apparently that's the case.

    "2) Lack of decent printer support (i.e. no Lexmark drivers). Yes, I know this is not the "fault" of Linux, but no Linux drivers means no Linux drivers." and "UKP200" (for a printer)

    You've been looking in the wrong places. Unless you have a strange one-of-a-king printer, you should be able to find drivers. I print on a lexmark from my Linux boxen on a daily basis. Though the printer is a piece of crap tbh. And 200 quids for a printer? I assume it's one of these printer/fax/scanner/coffee machine combos. And by "lack of drivers" you then probably mean "lack of shiny 'solution center' graphical interface with big shiny colourful buttons to disguise the fact that it's actually only a very crappy image editing software"? In that case you'd be right. And it's a darn good thing, too.

    Linux might not be perfect, but you might want to actually try it before dissing it. Though it's not The Ultimate Saviour of The World, I generally find it pretty good, even for desktop use. Better than Windows in any case. Of course it still won't run Crysis with details on high -though rumor has it that a Google employee managed to get 20 FPS in full-res, however they had to allocate a full datacentre to the job.

    And also "I would rather switch to a Linux distro...but there just isn't one out there that suits my needs" is a bit bold. If anything, there are far too many of the things laying around, you'd be very unlucky if there wasn't one for you. But then you could roll your own (easier than you might think).

  49. Oliver 10

    Ho Hmm

    Forget discounts, after using Ubuntu, CentOS and Puppy for some years now and enjoying the win-back of time from not having to do proactive firewalling/virus scanning/malware much less recovery from clickjacking, registry corruption, and reinstalls from registry rot; I would expect MS to PAY ME to use their POS Operating System...

  50. Tommy Pock

    "pay for your OS"

    will, in the not too distant future, sound as quaint as "another quart of coal for the iron horse my good man."

  51. George 24

    Brits getting a bad deal???...???

    For those who complain that the Brits are getting a bad deal... Yes the deal is not as good as for the US, but what about the rest of the world... M$hafted again.

    Microsoft is not looking at thing intelligently again. By continuously trying to offer deals for some and excluding others, M$ is upsetting the vast majority of the planet. Family packs for some, Student discounts for others (or same) etc. Many will use pirated software, even in the enterprise, like it is common practice in China and India.

    Since M$ has the biggest share of the market place, it should be easier for them to make the cheapest OS.... Once it is cheap enough, China and India will be looking at purchasing instead of pirating.... Big customer base.

  52. Casper Orillian

    Everyone in my college gets a free email, including all the teachers

  53. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Reading skills

    For people complaining that their school is not on the list,.

    . A valid e-mail address given by a college or university must be used. An e-mail will be sent telling the student if he or she qualifies for the discount. Eligible students are allowed to purchase one copy of either Windows 7 Home Premium or Windows 7 Professional from the online store.

  54. McDave

    They couldn't give...

    Vista away when it was launched. I suppose this is a bit more realistic!


  55. Inachu

    Cool news but!

    Still makes me angry as hell that one the first day sale of Windows 2000 the retail price for Windows 2000 was $700. Yes I did buy it.


    I want a major discount coupon Microsoft!!!

  56. Snert Lee

    All Students in College?

    What about High School students?

    I'm surprised Microsoft hasn't ginned up a mascot for the elementary school set. Maybe Winny the Windows polar bear, because polar bears eat penguins, don'chya know?

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