getting refund for your preinstalled Windows

As we all know, it can be quite difficult to purchase a computer without a preinstalled version of Microsoft Windows.

However, if for whatever reason you don’t want to use the preinstalled software (Windows, Office, Works, …), you are eligible for a refund as defined in the end users licence agreement that comes with products from Microsoft.

The first thing to do is to check the contents of the actual license. You can do so on this website from microsoft [1].

So for example, the first page of the English Windows Vista Business EULA contains this paragraph in bold:

By using the software, you accept these terms. If you do not accept them, do not use the software. Instead, contact the manufacturer or installer to determine their return policy for a refund or credit.

In other words, you have to contact the manufacturer of your computer and query them about how to get a refund or credit for the unused license.

Typically this should be done as soon as possible after your purchase. How good or how well this works mostly depends on the manufacturer, use google to read some experiences (“windows refund”) or read this article on wikipedia [2]. But in general you can expect to get something around EUR 100,- for a preinstalled Windows, so this is certainly worth some effort.

[1] http://www.microsoft.com/about/legal/useterms/default.aspx
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_refund

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