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Author Topic: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??  (Read 1255 times)

sphere

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Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« on: July 01, 2020, 09:44 AM »
So I came across this deal which was suppose to expire yesterday. It is still going... maybe because of time zones or maybe it will be extended.
Here is the initial link I saw.
https://www.computer...etail-right-now.html
It takes you here
https://software.pcworld.com/


I believe PCworld used to be a pretty big magazine if I am not mistaken so I am guessing this is legit. That is what I am going on.
Looking at other deals in the forum there is this post that links to a deal from download crew.  It seems like it is an identical deal and the site looks pretty similar. 

sphere

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2020, 08:23 AM »
Looks like the links I posted above are not working.  I think it might have to with how I posted them.
https://software.pcw...dows_10_professional
link

[update] Not sure if the links above are any better.  At first I thought it was because the deal expired, but now I am thinking I am doing something wrong when posting them. In anycase, the deal can be found by searching  pcworld software windows 10 pro 39  https://www.google.c...ld+windows+10+pro+39
I know it is possible to get cheaper licenses, but from what I have read, this is a legit retail version.  It is really hard to know if it can be transfered to another system or not as MS licensing is hard to follow.
« Last Edit: July 02, 2020, 08:30 AM by sphere »

Nod5

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2020, 03:05 AM »
Did anyone here act on the offer last time? How did that pan out? Asking since I see that the PC World site has the price again now for a limited time. Sounds a bit too inexpensive to be true for a retail Win 10 Pro license, no?
https://software.pcw...dows_10_professional

x16wda

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2020, 10:44 AM »
It's not from Microsoft. Possibly it's an EOM key that was scrounged from a junked PC, so it was valid at one time, but only for that PC.

I would be <<<highly>>> surprised it it is a valid license. Remember that a lot of sites rent out their ad space to a third party that you don't see. A lot of malware was spread this way at one time.

My wife took advantage of something similar awhile back, it promised a subscription to one of the newspapers (NY Times, WSJ? I forget) that financial people look at. Normally like $300/year, this was 40-50. It let her set it up and sign in once. Next time she tried it, it wouldn't work. Maybe they buy once subscription and resell it forever, the last person to buy it uses it.

vi vi vi - editor of the beast

tomos

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #4 on: September 07, 2020, 02:28 PM »
Did anyone here act on the offer last time? How did that pan out? Asking since I see that the PC World site has the price again now for a limited time. Sounds a bit too inexpensive to be true for a retail Win 10 Pro license, no?
https://software.pcw...dows_10_professional
They are a big company so I was thinking that the license must be genuine, but have a look at their customer reviews -- most are for hardware, but also software: download links not working / payment being taken and no emails received confirming payment or purchase etc. Doesnt sound like a malicious company, just sounds like a real mess ...
https://uk.trustpilo...ew/www.pcworld.co.uk

Almost all one star reviews; occasional positive reviews, most of which appear to be fake.
Tom
« Last Edit: September 07, 2020, 02:34 PM by tomos »

tomos

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #5 on: September 07, 2020, 02:32 PM »
Another possibility:
Andre Da Costa

    MVP |
    Volunteer Moderator

They are likely selling MSDN licenses.

About MSDN or TechNet Product Keys They are genuine Microsoft product keys, they are actually retail licenses, but it is intended for a particular product channel either the Microsoft Software Developer Network (MSDN) or TechNet for IT Professionals who pay a subscription fee.

The main purpose is for evaluation purposes. The great thing about them, unlike trial Microsoft software, MSDN or TechNet keys don't expire. Because the agreement under which the subscription is provided is a single license, none of the software should be distributed outside of it. Even though its $50,000 worth of licenses, it is for one person only to use and no one else.

Unfortunately, regardless of the licensing terms, persons still abuse the program, either giveaway product keys or resell it on auction sites. Microsoft licenses it in good faith that customers won't do so, but I guess human nature wins out.In your case, what probably happened is, you bought an MSDN licensed key, which carries up to 10 activations unlike full packaged retail licenses which only carry 1 activation.

The person who sold it to you probably sold it to 10 other persons. Somewhere along the way, one of those persons might have installed it on a second system, activated it, because it went past 10 activation threshold, Microsoft detected it that it was being abused and blocked the key from further use.

Best,
Andre
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MVP-Windows and Devices for IT
twitter/adacosta
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https://answers.micr...28-bf58-af4caaeb2f13
Tom

Stephen66515

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2020, 02:36 PM »
PCWorld are...huge so I see absolutely no reason why it wouldn't be legitimate, personally.

x16wda

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #7 on: September 07, 2020, 03:05 PM »
1 - PC World is huge, however it's likely they sell the ad space on their site to an ad network or broker, and and it is unlikely they they have a staff that checks out every ad that is shown on their site.
2 - Technet was discontinued in 2013. MSDN is still around. But selling MSDN licenses is still not legitimate.
3 - Keys from OEM machines are tied to those machines, so selling those is not legitimate either.
3 - Whatever happened to "if it's too good to be true then it probably isn't"?
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Stephen66515

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #8 on: September 07, 2020, 03:20 PM »
1 - PC World is huge, however it's likely they sell the ad space on their site to an ad network or broker, and and it is unlikely they they have a staff that checks out every ad that is shown on their site.
2 - Technet was discontinued in 2013. MSDN is still around. But selling MSDN licenses is still not legitimate.
3 - Keys from OEM machines are tied to those machines, so selling those is not legitimate either.
3 - Whatever happened to "if it's too good to be true then it probably isn't"?


1. What ads?
2. There is no indication they don't just buy in volume from microsoft and are able to offer them at heavily discounted prices (huge companies can and do; do this.)
3. There is no indication these are "recycled" keys
4 (3?). Huge companies can afford to sell stuff for cheap...it's not like it's some dodgy grey market site like G2A...

Going on the assumption that it's the same PC World as we have in the UK (I can't find anything to suggest it isn't...but also can't figure out if it actually is) - PC World are HUGE electronics stores based all around the UK, owned by a bigger tech corporation which obviously affords them the ability to purchase things for cheap in large volumes and sell for cheap when they want to.

(The reviews tomos posted are for PCWorld.co.uk, which is what I'm talking about and assuming is the same overall company as pcworld.com)

I mean, it's fair enough to say PCWorld is mostly super over priced stuff that you can get way cheaper from almost anywhere else...but to say they aren't legitimate would be wrong.

Stephen66515

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #9 on: September 07, 2020, 03:26 PM »
Additional:

Even if it's not linked to the EU/UK PCWorld (and associated brands) [which would be odd to have a company of the exact same name without it ever being questioned]...PCWorld Magazine (and the other IDG mags like Macworld, InfoWorld, JavaWorld, Computerworld, etc) is a HUGE publication (Which has promoted DC software several times, in fact) and I genuinely can't see a legitimate, HUGE publication/company standing to gain anything from selling anything less than legitimate. That and the fact that it includes official microsoft support just goes to solidify my thinking on this.

Stephen66515

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #10 on: September 07, 2020, 03:29 PM »
It's not from Microsoft. Possibly it's an EOM key that was scrounged from a junked PC, so it was valid at one time, but only for that PC.

Windows 10 Professional includes a 1-PC retail license which means you can install on a single PC and, later, move to another PC where required.
(Source)

Retail License != OEM

https://cloudblogs.m...and-volume-licenses/



I'd expect more research from a bunch of techies on a techy forum, to be honest.

Nod5

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #11 on: September 07, 2020, 04:45 PM »
Yes, it is on the PC World magazine website, in turn owned by IDG, which are well established.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PC_World
https://en.wikipedia...rnational_Data_Group

I found this archived version of a now removed page by PC World editor in chief
https://web.archive....s-80-off-retail.html
PCWorld’s partner, Cleverbridge, is able to secure great discounts by going directly to software vendors and publishers, buying licenses in bulk, and then working with safe, secure brands (like PCWorld) to sell the software directly to consumers. Please note this deal is for an unlimited lifetime license for a single PC.

This reddit post has some speculation about it being a "grey market key", which AFAICT means Microsoft could deactivate it in the future. One person in that thread says they purchased a license and it shows as retail.
https://old.reddit.c...through_here_should/

Since PC World has had the same campaign previously, so might do it again later, and since I don't really need a Win 10 license right now I'll pass, but if anyone gets one let us know how it goes.

Stephen66515

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #12 on: September 09, 2020, 02:07 AM »
I did some digging and it turns out PC World (USA) have absolutely nothing to do with PC World (UK/EU) despite them having the exact same name.  Very odd indeed.

So, those pcworld.co.uk reviews are for the UK/EU one, not the pcworld.com one (which, in fairness, pcworld.co.uk does have shockingly bad customer service with overpriced products lol).

So weird that neither one has tried to have the other one change their name and neither of them has a "not affiliated with the other" on their websites  :huh:

wraith808

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #13 on: September 09, 2020, 05:02 AM »
It's not from Microsoft. Possibly it's an EOM key that was scrounged from a junked PC, so it was valid at one time, but only for that PC.

Windows 10 Professional includes a 1-PC retail license which means you can install on a single PC and, later, move to another PC where required.
(Source)

Retail License != OEM

https://cloudblogs.m...and-volume-licenses/



I'd expect more research from a bunch of techies on a techy forum, to be honest.


I think the point is just because they say retail doesn't mean it's retail.  Most end users won't know the difference.  And there have been instances in the past where they say 'retail' but you end up with 'OEM'.  And MSDN does include 'retail' licenses, not licensed for resale.

Contro

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #14 on: September 09, 2020, 01:58 PM »
My last laptop was bought second hand with 8 hours of use. It was for a student, but he didn't approve the course.
The seller is in my town and seems to me a professional one.
when I ask for the operating system he tells me that he will give the license code. And that was a licence of windows 10 home from ebay-amazon-aliexpress at very low price. 5 dollars or so....
The true point is that i am updating the operating system with no problem.
I think there is some controlversial about this.
The laptop is a hewlett packard and comes with a DOS operating system.....
I think the people who understand well the pc buys in this way. They buy with a free DOS and then obtain a cheap license from microsoft.
I remember I have seen windows 10 pro in ebay.

 :-* :P

panzer

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #15 on: September 13, 2020, 02:28 AM »
If you really must use Windows 10, then at least use something like this:
https://www.oo-software.com/en/shutup10
https://github.com/S...x/Windows10Debloater
« Last Edit: September 13, 2020, 03:29 PM by panzer »

sphere

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #16 on: September 15, 2020, 10:14 AM »
UPDATED: I did end up purchasing a couple copies.  I felt reassured by the process and by my experiences. In short it seems like the licenses work. There is just uncertainty if there will be some sort of issue with them working in the future.  I have provided some information about my experiences below, to help others make a decision. 

When I did some research online initially, I thought this deal was ending in a day or so. I found a number of forums/threads with people speculating about what kind of license it was.  I am not remembering where but the conversations were similar to what has happened in this thread. A number of people had decided to take the leap and I did as well.  I decided it was worth the risk to purchase 2 licenses. I had an old pc I wanted to try and get running for a family friend and I wanted a license to use in the future for myself.  I also know a few people IRL who took advantage of the deal.  The purchased was handled by cleverbridge.  I will copy the information from the emails I received below.  I was provided with one order confirmation, followed by another email with the product keys and instructions.   

About a month after purchasing, a friend mentioned he had had some issues with his license and asked if I had had any issues with mine.  He told me he had contacted support and they helped him resolve it and that he was pleased. He mentioned he found someone else online that had had issues and support had also resolved their issue. I had not used either of the licenses I purchased, so I figured I should make sure at least one of them worked by doing a fresh install on the old pc I had. Cleverbridge offers a 60 day download link from their server, but I decided to be safe I would download straight from Microsoft.  The install went fine. The only annoyances being Microsoft related annoyances:)  The license activated and it has gone through a number of rounds of windows updates with no issues.

I know someone else who purchased installation media with their license. It was an added cost per license of $6.95 for the dvd.  They received a dvd (photo copied below).  It was mailed from Creativemark, Black & White Building London EC2A 3AY United Kingdom and they thought that was strange that it came from the UK.  Their invoice also stated that "Cleverbridge, Inc. is the merchant of record for this transaction. 350 N Clark, Suite 700, Chicago, IL, 60654, United States Tax ID: 20-4503251"   This DVD does not look to my eyes like an "official" Microsoft dvd, but to be honest I have not seen Microsoft media since Windows 7 as they have moved heavily towards their installation media creation tool.

Below I will copy the emails I received- omitting the licenses/personal data with XXXXs.  Also note that a number of the download links have expired.
Hope this helps
-Sphere


ORDER CONFIRMATION EMAIL

Dear ______<
Thank you for your order.

Below you will find your cleverbridge reference number. To ensure the most prompt and efficient service, please always refer to your reference number when contacting us.
Your cleverbridge reference number: XXXXXXXXXXX

We have received your order and it is undergoing normal, manual processing, which will be completed within the next hour. In exceptional cases, the process may last longer.

Nonetheless, upon completion of the manual processing, you will receive an email with further information about your order. Please do not place another order until you have received a confirmation email from us about this order or you may be billed twice.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.
Support options
Technical and product-related support
If you have any technical or product-related inquiries, please contact Creativemark using the following information:
Website: https://www.creativemark.com
Email: [email protected]
Creativemark are the developers of this store and can provide basic support by email and via your software store. Contact us if you have technical issues. Contact Cleverbridge if you have problems with your order.
Payment and order-related support
If you have any payment or order-related inquiries, feel free to contact cleverbridge Customer Support.
https://www.cleverbr...mp;cfg=affiliate2019

Sincerely,
cleverbridge Customer Support

cleverbridge, Inc.

350 N Clark, Suite 700 - Chicago, IL 60654 - United States
        
LICENSE AND INSTRUCTIONS EMAIL:

Dear ______,
Thank you for your order.

Below you will find your cleverbridge reference number. To ensure the most prompt and efficient service, please always refer to your reference number when contacting us.
Your cleverbridge reference number: XXXXXXXX
Payment information
Your credit card (xxxxxxxxxxxxx) has been successfully authorized. Please note that the charge on your credit card will appear as "CBI*CREATIVEMARK."
Your products
Qty.   Product name   Delivery
2   
Microsoft Windows 10 Professional includes a 1-PC, lifetime license electronic

Your product key:
xxxx-xxxx-xxx.....

This is the official Windows 10 Installation Guide. Read this before you start. You have 30 days from this order date to download these files through the links on this page. If you have purchased Extended Download Insurance with this order, you will be able to login to your store account and download these full versions for up to two years from the order date.

Download (link expired)

File size: 1469 KB.

Your download link is valid until xx/xx/xxxx.
Note: The date specified for this download link does not affect the validity of your license.

This is the official Windows 10 Media Creation Tool. Use this on your existing computer to upgrade to Windows 10 OR use it to create a brand new fresh Windows 10 install. You have 60 days from this order date to download these files through the links on this page. If you have purchased Extended Download Insurance with this order, you will be able to login to your store account and download these full versions for up to two years from the order date.

Download

File size: 18 MB.

Your download link is valid until xx/xx/xxxx.
Note: The date specified for this download link does not affect the validity of your license.

How do I upgrade from Home to Pro?

Although we've sold you a full version of Windows 10 Professional, most people will only need to upgrade from Home. First thing to note, you can only upgrade from Home if Home is fully activated. If you have an activated Home, to upgrade to Professional, simply follow this within Windows 10:

Go to Settings > Activation > Change product key and you'll be able to drop in your new Professional code and unlock the Professional features. No need to re-install Windows 10. Once you drop in your new code, expect Windows 10 Home to download additional Professional components then either reboot or log you out (you'll need to log back in). Once this happens, you'll have Windows 10 Professional.

Alternatively, you can use your Windows 10 Professional from scratch on a brand new PC. Follow the instructions supplied and use the Windows 10 Media Creation Tool to create an install DVD or USB stick.

IMPORTANT - Can't Upgrade from Home to Pro? Read This First

If you are trying to upgrade from 10 Home to 10 Pro, you might find your key doesn’t work immediately. Windows 10 will claim the product key can't be used to upgrade. Why not? Effectively Windows 10 Home isn’t ‘ready’ to upgrade as it has unfinished updates.

To fix this issue, you need to run through all Windows 10 updates and reboot. Indeed, reboot anyhow, as often there’s a background process which hasn’t finished updating. Sometimes you might even have to reboot twice as Windows 10 will stack small updates which install on system boot and will stop any upgrade to Professional.

Once you've checked for updates and rebooted (we can't emphasise enough that you need to reboot), try entering your new Product Key again.

Still Can't Upgrade?

We've seen various reasons why your system might not be ready to upgrade - reach out to us and we'll get back to you as soon as possible with our 'top tips' to help.
Your purchase documents
Adobe Acrobat Reader is needed to open this PDF file. If this software is not yet installed on your computer, please download a free version here.
Invoice XXXXX

Support options
Technical and product-related support
If you have any technical or product-related inquiries, please contact Creativemark using the following information:
Website: https://www.creativemark.com
Email: [email protected]
Creativemark are the developers of this store and can provide basic support by email and via your software store. Contact us if you have technical issues. Contact Cleverbridge if you have problems with your order.
Payment and order-related support
If you have any payment or order-related inquiries, feel free to contact cleverbridge Customer Support.

Sincerely,
cleverbridge Customer Support

cleverbridge, Inc.

350 N Clark, Suite 700 - Chicago, IL 60654 - United States

x16wda

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Re: Windows 10 Professional for $40 PCWorld??
« Reply #17 on: September 15, 2020, 07:04 PM »
@Sphere, thanks, that is very good to know. I am happy to hear this first hand information instead of just speculating what could go wrong (I think I am an optimistic pessimist).
vi vi vi - editor of the beast