Do I Need Another Windows 10 License for A Virtual Machine
Virtualization software increases productivity and reduces operating cost. When creating virtual machines, you need install Windows operating system. So how to choose Windows licenses and do you need another Windows license in a virtual machine?
By Crystal / Last Updated March 8, 2023
Do I need another Windows license for a virtual machine
In a virtual environment, when you create a new virtual machine and install Windows as the guest system, you may wonder “Do I need another Windows license for a virtual machine?”
The answer is YES. The number of Windows licenses depends on the number of processors and processor cores, so you are licensing hardware instead of software. If you use the same license of your PC for a virtual machine, it will state “This product key is being used on another PC”. When you export a virtual machine or perform P2V, Windows is able to recognize that the virtual hardware is different. So you need active another Windows license for a virtual machine.
If you purchase a fully packaged product (FPP) of Windows (often called a “boxed copy”) from a retail store or purchase Windows online from the Microsoft Store, the product key can be transferred to another computer.
Types of Windows licenses
The type of license you have for your Windows operating system can affect how you activate Windows after you start to use it in a virtual machine.
With an OEM license, Windows is tied directly to the hardware on which it was loaded by the manufacturer. Most pre-installed versions of Windows have OEM licenses. OEM licenses generally cannot be transferred to another computer, or to a virtual machine. If you use the Fusion Migrate Your PC feature to migrate one of these types of systems to a virtual machine, you might be required to purchase a second license (or product key) from Microsoft. If a second product key is required, you can get that through the Microsoft representative when you call Microsoft Support to activate the operating system now residing in the virtual machine.
How to use Windows Sandbox. a lightweight virtual machine
With a retail license, when you buy Windows from a vendor, the license enables you to change platforms as often as you want. In this case, you can reactivate Windows over the Internet, or by phone with Microsoft Support.
With an enterprise license, you can move the operating system around freely.
How to license a Windows 10 virtual machine
You can look through the Help and Support item on the Windows Start menu which enables you to find specific information about activation for the Windows 10 operating system. If you do not find out any information, you do not have a legitimate Windows 10 license. In this case, the only solution is to purchase another product key used for the Windows 10 virtual machine.
This part covers the steps to add a Windows license to VMware ESXi and Workstation.
Note: Install VMware Tools in the virtual machine before you activate Windows. VMware Tools keeps track of the activation keys. Without VMware Tools installed, you must reactivate Windows each time you start up the virtual machine.
In VMware ESXi, after creating a virtual machine, you need to enter the license to active Windows 10.
Note: You can also add a Windows license for Hyper-V virtual machine following the official Windows installation wizard.
In VMware Workstation, you can add a Windows product key when creating a new virtual machine.
After adding a license for Windows 10 VM, you can enjoy the benefits of Windows 10 operating system. However, you should know that there is no absolutely secure operating system. Especially for enterprises, virtual machine holds precious files and important software. When its system crash or other unpredictable disasters occur, it’s possible to cause you to never access to your data. So, backup is so important for any sizes of business.
Important: Protect VM data securely with AOMEI Cyber Backup
Regular backup contributes to avoid data loss and reduces the financial damage when accidents happened. AOMEI Cyber Backup. a free VM backup software, offers a secure VMware and Hyper-V backup that offers flexible backup strategies for free. With AOMEI Cyber Backup, you can benefit from the following features.
Perpetual Free: no time limit for AOMEI Cyber Backup Free Edition. Support Free ESXi: support both paid and free versions of VMware ESXi. Easy to use: Backup multiple virtual machines through central console and offers intuitive interface to perform the click-based operation. Automate VM Backup: Schedule VM backup with flexible backup strategies and run the backup tasks automatically, which reduces human errors and always protects VM data continuously. Centralized VM Backup: Backup multiple virtual machines on the host simultaneously from a central console, and simplify VM backup and management. Instant Recovery: Restore entire VM from any point without any complicated reinstallation and configuration. Less Time and Cost: Offer hot backup to reduce VM downtime, so it avoids the financial loss due to business interruption.
Please hit the button below to download and use AOMEI Cyber Backup for free:
You can choose to install this VM backup software on either Windows or Linux system.
Free and secure backup of multiple virtual machine:
Click Backup Task Create New Task to back up numerous Hyper-V virtual machines.
In the opened wizard, schedule VM backup as the following.
Enter Task Name and select VMware ESXi Backup as an example.
In Device Name section, select virtual machines on the host to back up simultaneously.
In Target section, according to 3-2-1 backup rule, you can store VM backups in different place such as local destination, network share, NAS device, thus greatly protecting your VM data.
In Schedule section, select full / incremental/differential backup methods and specify the backup frequency by date / week / month.
Click Start Backup, you are able to recover the Hyper-V virtual machine hitting Restore on the main screen without any complex configuration.
✍ While the Free Edition covers most of the VM backup needs, you can also upgrade to Premium Edition to enjoy: ✦ Batch VM Backup: Batch backup large numbers of VMs managed by vCenter Server or standalone ESXi hosts. ✦ Backup Cleanup: Configure retention policy to auto delete the old backup files and save storage space. ✦ Restore to new location: Easily make a clone of a virtual machine in the same or another datastore/host, without reinstalling or configuring a new VM.
As with physical machines, virtual machines running any version of Windows require valid licenses. No matter you create a new VM or migrate PC to virtual machine, you need to another Windows license for a virtual machine.
Besides, VMware image backup and restore helps to avoid data loss in virtual machine.
How to Create a Windows 7 Virtual Machine on Windows 10/11 [Resize Partition]
Microsoft has stopped the support for Windows 7 for a long time. Nowadays, many people are using Windows 10/11. However, it’s possible that you need to use Windows 7 sometimes. In this case, you can create a Windows 7 virtual machine on Windows 10/11. This post from MiniTool Partition Wizard will tell you how to do that.
A virtual machine (VM) is the virtualization/emulation of a computer system. Virtual machines are based on computer architectures and provide functionality of a physical computer. If you want to run a different OS on the current operating system, creating a VM is a good choice.
Nowadays, many PCs are running Windows 10/11. If you have the demand of running Windows 7, you can use Hyper-V, VirtualBox, or VMware to create a virtual machine Windows 7.
This post introduces 5 best virtual machine programs for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS users.
Before you create a Windows 7 virtual machine, you should do some preparations.
Download Windows 7 ISO File
To create a virtual machine, you need an ISO file of the operating system. Please download a Windows 7 ISO file from a reliable website.
Install a Virtual Machine Program
I will recommend you to choose a VM program from Hyper-V, VirtualBox, and VMware.
Hyper-V is a virtualization technology tool embedded in 64-bit Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise, and Education. If you are using these Windows versions, you don’t need to install other VM programs.
As for VirtualBox and VMware, they are famous virtual machine programs. The former is totally open-source (free) while the latter is paid software. But VMware also offers the free version (VMware Workstation Player). You can choose a VM program according to you needs.
Make a Partition for the Virtual Machine Windows 7
Running virtual machines will generate a lot of disk fragmentation. Putting the VM file and other program files in the same partition will affect the running speed.
In addition, some operations like disk defragmentation cannot be performed on the partition storing the virtual machine, because that may cause the virtual machine to fail (virtual machine files are corrupted).
Therefore, I recommend you to create a partition dedicated to the virtual machine Windows 7. To do that, you can use MiniTool Partition Wizard. This software can complete this job well. Here is the guide:
Step 1: Click the above button to download and install MiniTool Partition Wizard. Launch this software and go to its main interface. Then, right-click the partition you want to shrink and choose Move/Resize from the context menu.
Step 2: In the pop-up window, drag the slider to choose how much size you want to shrink and click OK to continue. The number in the box following Unallocated Space After is the space size you reserve for the new partition.
Tip: If you only install a virtual machine, 30 GB space is fine. However, as you use the guest virtual machine, the guest virtual machine file grows. Sometimes, this file can be up to 100 GB or even more. Therefore, the larger the space for the virtual machine, the better.
Step 3: Right-click the gray unallocated space and choose Create from the context menu.
Step 4: In the pop-up window, choose partition properties like file system, partition label, drive letter and so on. Then, click OK to continue.
Step 5: Preview the changes and click Apply to confirm the changes.
How to Create a Windows 7 Virtual Machine
In this part, I will show you how to create a Windows virtual machine on Windows 10/11 using Hyper-V, VirtualBox, and VMware.
Create a Windows 7 Virtual Machine Using Hyper-V
Step 1: Verify whether the PC hardware is compatible with Hyper-V.
- Type “cmd” in the Windows search box. Then right click the best-matched result (Command Prompt) and click Run as administrator.
- Type the command “systeminfo” and then press Enter. After the result comes out, please check the Hyper-V Requirements Only when all Hyper-V requirements are Yes, you can run Hyper-V without problem. If you can’t run Hyper-V, please use VirtualBox or VMware instead.
Step 2: Update Windows to the latest version. If your Windows version is too old, the VM creation process may be a little different.
- Press Windows key I to open Settings.
- Go to Update Security Windows Update Check for updates. PC will download and install updates automatically.
- After Windows updates are installed, press Windows key R to call out the Run Type “winver” into the box and press Enter. Make sure the Windows version is later than 1709.
Step 3: Enable Hyper-V.
- Right-click on the Windows button and select Apps and Features.
- Scroll down the right pane to find Related settings. Under this section, click Programs and Features.
- On the new window, select Turn Windows Features on or off.
- On the Windows Features window, select Hyper-Vand click OK. Please make sure Hyper-V Management Tools and Hyper-V Platform under the Hyper-V directory are selected.
- When the installation has completed, you are prompted to restart your computer. Do as required.
Step 4: Open Virtual Switch Manager and create a virtual network for the Windows 7 VM.
- Search and open Hyper-V Manager.
- In the Hyper-V Manager tool, in the left pane, select your PC and then click the Action menu Virtual Switch Manager.
- In the Virtual Switch Managerwindow, in the left pane, select New virtual network switch under the Virtual Switches
- In the right panel, choose External. Then, click the Create Virtual Switch
- For the new virtual switch, please type the name, ensure External network is selected, and select the physical network card to be paired with the new virtual switch.
- Then, click the OK button apply and save changes.
Step 5: Create a Windows 7 virtual machine.
- In the Hyper-V Manager, click ActionNewVirtual Machine.
- Follow the wizard to configure the settings of the new virtual machine. For example, the name, the location, the memory, the network, the virtual hard disk. What’s more, you should choose the Windows 7 ISO file as the image file.
- Then, you can go through the Windows 7 installation process. After that, a Windows 7 virtual machined is created successfully.
If your Windows version is earlier than 1709, or you want to get a more detailed guide, please refer to the following post:
This post shows you how to create a VM with Hyper-V, which can be viewed as Virtual PC Windows 10.
Create a Windows 7 Virtual Machine Using VirtualBox
Tip: Both VirtualBox and VMware can run on almost any Windows versions (no matter the Windows is 32-bit or 64-bit; and no matter the Windows is Windows 7, 8, or 10).
Step 1: Open VirtualBox and click the New icon (the gear icon).
Step 2: Type the name of the new VM, choose the location of the VM, and the type and version of the VM. Then, follow the wizard to configure the memory size, virtual hard disk, etc.
Step 3: After the VM is created, highlight the VM and then choose Settings icon. In the new window, you can configure more settings of the VM. But the most important thing is to load the Windows 7 ISO file. Please go to Storage, highlight Empty under the Controller, click the drop-down menu beside the Optical Drive, and then click Choose a disk file.
Step 4: After you have configured all settings, save changes and click the Start icon to go through the Windows 7 installation process.
If you want to get more detailed tutorial on VirtualBox, you can refer to this post: How to Install Ubuntu on VirtualBox? Here’s the Full Guide.
Create a Windows 7 Virtual Machine Using VMware
Step 1: Launch VMware Workstation, click Create a New Virtual Machine, and choose Typical (if you use the free version, the typical is chosen by default).
Tip: The free version cannot run multiple VMs at the same time. If you want to run another VM, please upgrade to the paid version or delete the existing VM.
Step 2: Choose Installer disc image file (iso) and click Browse to find the Windows 7 ISO file. Then, follow the wizard to configure VM type, version, name, location, and disk size. Then, right-click the Windows 7 VM and choose Settings, you can configure/change network, memory size, and more parameters there.
Step 3: After all are configured well, you can right-click the Windows 7 VM and chose Power On.
If you want to get more detailed tutorial on VMware, you can refer to this post: How to Use Windows 10 as a Virtual Machine. A Step-by-Step Guide.
Tip: If the VM become bigger and bigger and the free space of the VM partition is used up. You can delete the VM and create a new one or extend the VM partition using MiniTool Partition Wizard.
Is this post useful to you? Which VM program are you choosing? Have you encountered problems when following the above guides? Do you know other good ways to create a virtual machine Windows 7? Please leave a comment in the following zone.
In addition, if you have difficulty in moving/resizing or extending a partition, please feel free to contact us via [email protected]. We will get back to you as soon as possible.
About The Author
Author Linda has been working as an editor at MiniTool for 1 year. As a fresh man in IT field, she is curious about computer knowledge and learns it crazily. Maybe due to this point, her articles are simple and easy to understand. Even people who do not understand computer can gain something.
By the way, her special focuses are data recovery, partition management, disk clone, and OS migration.
How to Enable Hyper-V in Windows 10
Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise, and Education editions contain a free virtualization software named Hyper-V. The underlying code works nearly the same as what’s provided in Windows Server. In this article, I will discuss how to enable Hyper-V on Windows 10, how to create your first virtual machine, and briefly talk about nested virtualization.
How to enable Hyper-V on Windows 10
You can enable Hyper-V on Windows 10 by using PowerShell or the Windows GUI. PowerShell is probably the easiest way to do it, and here’s two proceed:
Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature.Online.FeatureName Microsoft-Hyper-V –All
- Reboot your Windows 10 PC when prompted.
- You can now access Hyper-V and create your first virtual machine!
Keep reading for more detailed instructions on how to enable Hyper-V using either PowerShell or the Windows GUI.
What is Hyper-V?
Hyper-V is Microsoft’s free virtualization software in all editions and versions of Windows Server and Windows 10/11 Pro, Enterprise, and Education SKUs. Whether you’re an IT professional, a software developer, or a technology enthusiast, I imagine you would prefer to run multiple, independent operating systems on one computer instead of having to purchase a computer for each one. That can get expensive!
Virtual machines running in Hyper-V run on what’s called virtual hardware. Hard disks, switches, and DVD Drives are virtualized and presented to your guest OS. The guest VM doesn’t necessarily know it’s running as a virtual machine.
Hyper-V system requirements
There are a few technical and specific requirements and prerequisites before enabling the Hyper-V feature in Windows 10. First, your host computer must meet these requirements:
- 64-bit CPU with Second Level Address Translation (SLAT).
- CPU support for VM Monitor Mode Extension (VT-c on Intel CPUs).
- 4 GB Memory (you will want MORE, trust me)
There are additional requirements later on if you wish to run a virtual machine inside of a virtual machine – don’t worry, I’ll talk about nested virtualization soon enough.
Can you install Hyper-V on Windows 10 Home?
Hyper-V requires Windows 10 (or 11) Enterprise, Pro, or Education editions, and it’s not available on Windows 10 Home. However, you can upgrade from Windows 10 Home to Windows 10 Pro on your PC by going into Settings Update and Security Activation.
How to enable Hyper-V with PowerShell
Interestingly the steps required to enable the feature in Windows are relatively easy. I say interesting because being able to run another operating system ‘inside’ your current operating system is a very cool technology. And, thanks to the rather powerful and efficient tech behind Powershell, you’ll be up and running and creating virtual machines (VMs) in no time.
- Go ahead and open a new PowerShell console as Administrator.
- Run the following command to enable Hyper-V:
- Go ahead and restart your computer when prompted. Then, click the Start button and search for ‘Hyper-V‘.
- Click to open Hyper-V Manager.
Piece of cake! We are (sort of) all set to start creating VMs. Well, I discovered an ‘issue’ here. on that very soon.
How to enable Hyper-V with the Windows Settings GUI
Let me show you how to perform the same steps using the legacy Control Panel GUI.
- First, click the Start button and search for ‘optional features.’ Select Manage optional features.
- Click the Windows features link in the upper-right corner.
- Now, here’s where we hit a temporary block. If you scroll down to Hyper-V and expand it, you’ll see that the ‘Hyper-V Platform‘ item is greyed out.
When I hover over the Hyper-V Platform item, I see: “Hyper-V cannot be installed: The processor does not have the required virtualization capabilities.”
So, how about some background? Sure. I am utilizing my Hyper-V lab on my main desktop computer running Windows 11. I am using one of my Windows 10 VMs to demonstrate the topic. I am already one layer down in the virtual world if you will (think Inception).
However, what I am asking Windows to do is called nested virtualization. I will go over this in more detail below, but basically, I need to add a second layer. Run Hyper-V as a feature inside another Hyper-V VM. I know, I had to watch Inception 5 times to wrap my head around it!
Anyway, if you aren’t already running Windows 10 in a VM (as I am), Hyper-V won’t be greyed out in the list of optional Windows Features. You’ll be able to select it, click OK, then you’ll be prompted to reboot your Windows 10 PC.
Creating a virtual machine with Hyper-V
So, we have Hyper-V enabled and ready to go. Let’s go through the basics of creating a new Windows VM. In the Hyper-V Manager, we’ll first create a new Virtual Switch so we can pass the network/Internet connection on our host machine down to our new VM.
- Click Virtual Switch Manager… under the Actions menu on the right.
- Click the Create Virtual Switch button.
Let’s name it ‘Internet Switch.’ Then, the defaults should be good – we are using the External network and the Microsoft Hyper-V Network Adapter to pass thru whatever connection the VM host has down to the new VM. This will allow DHCP servers to give the new machine an IP Address.
- Click OK.
- Next, under Actions, click New. Virtual machine…
- Click Next, and then enter a name for the new machine and click Next.
- On the Specify Generation screen, you’ll want to choose Generation 2. Click Next
- I will assign 4 GB of ram for our new machine and turn off Dynamic Memory for these demo purposes. My initial Hyper-V VM has 8 GB, so that should be fine. Click Next.
- We will choose the ‘Internet Switch‘ from the Connection dropdown on the Configure Networking screen and click Next.
- We can leave all the defaults for the virtual hard disk, click Next and choose the default to install the operating system later
- Click Next again, and then Finish!
Recommended configuration changes for your Hyper-V VM
I will go through a few more common config changes I make when setting up a new VM and explain them to you.
How to convert your windows 10 into virtual machine
- Right-click on your virtual machine and click Settings.
- In the Add Hardware default menu, SCSI Controller should be selected. Click the ‘Add‘ button, select ‘DVD Drive‘, and then click Add again.
- Once you have an installation ISO file available, you can choose the ‘Image file:‘ option and browse to it.
- After you have your ISO ready, you should click the Firmware menu on the left and move the DVD Drive to the top of the list so the VM boots to it when you power it on.
- Then, click the Processor menu and verify how many virtual CPUs (vCPUs) you want to assign to it. The more you add, the faster it will run. However, this will also negatively impact your host operating system, so you’ll need to tweak these settings over time.
Well, those are the salient points and should definitely get you headed in the right direction.
Hyper-V and nested virtualization
I’ve already briefly described the concept of nested virtualization. For the scope of this article, let me ask you to get more detail by checking out our previous post on how to enable nested virtualization on Windows 10 Hyper-V.
However, I want to address a few ‘issues’ I mentioned earlier in this article. The main issue is the fact that I can’t really use the Hyper-V software until I resolve the nested virtualization requirements. Personally, I find it odd that Windows allows you to run the PowerShell command to enable the Hyper-V platform without the required prerequisites!
Being able to turn on the Hyper-V feature in a VM requires a special PowerShell command to be run from your initial host computer. Before you proceed, make sure the VM you wish to modify is powered off. I will fire up a PowerShell console as Administrator and run a few commands.
Yep, I do have a lovely assortment of machines, don’t I? The one I am working with is called ‘Windows 10 22H2 – MSA – ISO‘. So, I will run this command to enable the special CPU features for that specific VM.
Set-VMProcessor.VMName “Windows 10 22H2. MSA. ISO”. ExposeVirtualizationExtensions true
Simply power up your VM and now you’ll be able to enable Hyper-V in it. You can refer to the steps above using PowerShell or the GUI.
Hyper-V is a free, easy-to-use virtualization solution built right into Windows. I have been using it ever since it became a part of Windows, back in the Windows 8 days!
I strongly encourage you, as IT Pros, to use it for your day-to-day testing needs. There is no need to buy another desktop or laptop just to see if an older version of Adobe Acrobat will work on Windows 11. Just fire up a new Windows 11 VM and give it a go!
Please leave any Комментарии и мнения владельцев or questions below. I would love to assist you if you run into any configuration issues. Thanks for reading!
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Set up and install Windows 10 virtual machine – Your Virtual PC
There are many reasons for using a virtual machine in Windows 10, but most of them are for your own security. Just as sensible antivirus software protects you against viruses from the web, a virtual machine completely shields Windows 10. A virtual machine is a separate unit that operates separately from your existing operating system. In other words: a good alternative to the use of the Windows boot manager.
We’ll show you how to set up a virtual machine under Windows 10 and safely install your virtual PC. But first we’ll explain some basics that will lead to a better understanding.
What is a virtual machine?
In Windows, a virtual machine (VM) acts like a separate system that operates autonomously and independently of the rest of the PC. Hence the name Virtual Machine. It is, so to speak, a replica of your computer.
The advantages of a virtual machine for Windows 10
The majority of users use a virtual machine in Windows 10 to try out and test without endangering important files or documents on the actual PC. You have always wanted to set up a remote desktop? Or try to uninstall a particular Windows Update? Then better experiment on your virtual machine instead of directly messing around with Windows 10 settings.
Even a new operating system can be installed virtually. This way, Linux runs smoothly under Windows 10 and you can take advantage of both interfaces. You can even access exclusive software offers this way. In addition, questionable content such as outdated programmes that you already have uninstalled from your main computer can be started on the virtual machine. All installations remain trapped in the virtual frame and have no effect on the outside.
Setup – Which virtual machine for Windows 10?
To activate a virtual machine, you need special software. Many applications have been tried and tested and are available free of charge, for example Oracle VirtualBox VM or the Workstation Player from VMWare. However, we will take a closer look at the integrated solution of Windows 10: Hyper-V from Microsoft.
Note: The components of Hyper-V are already available with the correct Windows edition and only need to be activated. You need either Windows 10 Pro or Windows 10 Enterprise. Users with a licence for Windows 10 Home must first upgrade to a corresponding edition in advance.
To be able to set up a virtual machine using Hyper-V, proceed as follows:
Setup – Activating Hyper-V
- First, you need to activate the tool for the virtual machine. To do this, open the settings (Windows logo key I), switch to Apps Features and call up the item Programs and Features under Related Settings. There you will find the option to activate or deactivate Windows features.
- From the list of Windows features, look for the entry Hyper-V and make sure that the tick is confirmed. Then restart your PC.
- Now open the Hyper-V app. You can find the programme either via the start menu or the search function (Windows logo key S).
- In the Hyper-V interface, click on Manager for virtual switches under Actions on the right. Under External, select Create virtual switch.
- In the first text field you should now define a memorable name. You must also make sure that the Connection type is set to External network. Finally, activate the option Allow sharing of this network adapter for the management operating system.
- After confirming with OK, in some cases a connectivity message appears, to which you answer with Yes.
- At this point you can finally set up the actual virtual machine in Windows 10. Again on the right in the Actions window, click New to access the Virtual Machine option.
- Define further settings as you wish or rely on the Microsoft standards. Here you also enter the name for your virtual machine. Generation 1 is generally the right choice and you should allocate at least 4096 MB of memory. To be on the safe side, you should also activate Use dynamic memory for this virtual computer.
- Note the stored path. Finally, you must enter this path in the Memory path field parallel to the size of the virtual machine you have selected. You still know the name of your switch from step 5? Very good, because you enter this as the connection.
Setup – Success!
Congratulations! After you click Next one last time, the setup of your virtual machine is complete. Now all that remains is to install the desired operating system. For this, as usual, have your ISO file or the prepared USB stick ready. You can then access your virtual PC by double-clicking on Connect in the Hyper-V actions.