There are a few dedicated souls who actually read through the EULAs (End User Licensing Agreement) that pop up when you install a new piece of software but most of us simply click the I Agree button, life’s too short…. The ones that accompany Windows are amongst the longest and unless you have a degree in weasel-speak, they’re almost impenetrable.
However, Ed Bott at ZDNet has been reading through the one that comes with Vista and he has discovered small but subtle change in the bit that says how and when you can transfer the licence — i.e. your copy of Windows — to another machine. In XP there is no limit, which is good news for serial upgraders and system builders because it means they can transfer their OS’s to other PC as often as they like, provided it’s only on one PC at a time.
In Vista the EULA says you are only allowed to make one lifetime transfer, and it looks as though this will be enforced by Windows Product Activation. Of course it could all change when Vista finally hits the shelves in the next few weeks but if it doesn’t this could prove an expensive and very unwelcome burden for a lot of Windows users.