Buying OEM Windows Vista Versions?? Or Retail??

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Windows Vista OEM

  • Cheaper than the packaged boxed
  • Is only meant to be sold through computer retailers with new built computers
  • Separate DVD’s For Vista 32bit & 64Bit versions.
  • You have to buy either a 32bit version or 64bit version, not available on one DVD.
  • Possible Issues when upgrading hardware or “fresh” installing Operating System on other PC, as OEM is meant to be for a single hard configuration not like Windows XP OEM which could be activated on multiple computers.
  • May posses support/activation issues once installed (full extent unknown as yet).


Windows Vista Retail Packaging

  • Official & Genuine Packaging & Manuals
  • Is more expensive than OEM version
  • Guaranteed Future Support & Activations
  • Contains both 32bit & 64bit versions of Windows Vista for future upgradeability
  • Hardware changes are more flexible & are done without any issues.
  • Can be installed on any pc, not just official Vista computer building partners
  • Less chance of you OEM version to be a counterfeit version (there are very good look-alike counterfeit versions available).


Straight from the horse's mouth -- "spokesperson" at Microsoft Australia:

"OEM versions of Windows Vista must be distributed to end-users with a fully assembled computer system and must be pre-installed."

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