You are quite correct, Andrew.  However, if a system is not planned to be on campus with any frequency, we are happy to provide a MAK key.  CA users are perfectly entitled to use the MAK. 

My only wish would be for MS to provide a more convenient method for distributing MAK keys to authorized, such as though the use of an authenticated web service.  Without such an interface, we are forced to fall back to manual distribution, with all the associated key-disclosure risks (the main risk being that we would run out of MAK activations and have to beg MS for more).

J. Greg Mackinnon | Systems Administrator
ETS Systems Architecture and Administration | University of Vermont
Phone: 802-656-8251 | Web:

On 9/16/2010 11:39 AM, Andrew Hendrickson wrote:
[log in to unmask]" type="cite">But but, as I stated before, you really don't need the MAK.  Just bridge the VM.  Windows enterprise stays licensed for something like six months at a time (correct me if I'm wrong oh tsars of MCA), so all you'd have to do is plug that laptop in on campus twice a year.

We've all run into this issue with our Windows Vista and 7 VMs on our Macs and this solution has worked just fine.

Or in a pinch, VPN to UVM in the VM and force a license server update, instructions here:

On Sep 16, 2010, at 11:31 AM, Kelvin Chu wrote:

Hi Greg;

Thanks for your mail.  How do I get a MAK for my institutionally-owned laptop that is often off campus?  



On 16 Sep 2010, at 11:11 AM, J. Greg Mackinnon wrote:

On 9/16/2010 10:18 AM, Kelvin Chu wrote:
[log in to unmask]" type="cite">
Hello, all;
My laptop is owned by the University and I use it only for University business but because it isn't a desktop machine, I have XP installed via parallels.  I'm unable to keep the Windows7 install running because it appears to phone home every once in a while and realize that it doesn't have a 132.198 IP address (my guess).  
Is there a middle ground solution besides buying the work-at-home media, such as a UVM copy that I don't have to pay for but that I can use on machines that are off campus?  I don't really feel like paying Microsoft but I also don't want to get into trouble.


Institutionally owned systems that have a volume license edition of Windows Vista or Windows 7 installed should activate automatically, owing to the presence of our KMS (Key Management Server) on campus.

For off-campus systems, what you need is a MAK (Multiple Activation Key) to activate the product.  As long as your system is institutionally owned, you are entitled to use our MAK  for systems that will not be traveling onto campus with any particular frequency.

As an FYI for others monitoring this discussion, personally owned systems are not entitled to use Volume License editions of Windows.  However, you are entitled to one copy of Windows 7 though the work-at-home program, as long as you will be doing a fair amount of institutional work on your personal system.  You can buy work-at-home media though the Computer Depot in the Davis Center.  Prices are quite low, especially when compared to the cost of a full academic license for Win7.
J. Greg Mackinnon | ETS Systems Architecture and Administration | x68251

Andrew Hendrickson
CAS, IT Administrator
UVM, College of Arts & Sciences
438 College Street #402
Burlington, VT

802-656-4529 (fax)

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