Is this copy of Microsoft Office safe/legal?

Jul 16, 2013
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Hey guys,

Since I built my own computer, it didn't come with Microsoft office. I have a friend who works as an IT manager at a big company, and he offered to get me a download of Microsoft office Professional Plus 2010 for just $10, and forwarded me an email from microsoft with a link to download it, with something about Microsoft HUP in the title.

I'm just wanting to make sure: This is legal and safe, right?
 

USAFRet

Illustrious
Moderator
Safe, yes. Legal, no.

Microsoft HUP (Home Use Program) is for employees of a company that MS has large scale licensing with. This allows those employees to buy a copy for $10, and use it at home. Technically, it is ONLY for that employee. And supposedly only while they are employed with that company.
 

burdenbound

Distinguished
Aug 9, 2011
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The copy itself sounds legal but it seems like it would be against the terms and agreements your friends company has with microsoft itself. If you don't feel comfortable with it then just purchase a retail copy albeit more expensive.
 

yhikum

Honorable
Apr 1, 2013
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Why would you worry about safety of such program? Did you encounter Microsoft software being not safe? Or you are questioning source of your download being safe?

As for legal part, as long as you have downloaded Microsoft copy from their sources, it is completely fine. Your friend is doing you a good deed. For prosecution to consider you liable for damages, whomever person would need to provide both proof to YOU and judge that indeed damages have occured. License agreement would always come later, and that of itself is civil, non-criminal part, since for agreement to kick in you would first need proof of agreement, damages done per non-compliance for agreement and proof that considerations have been in contract. Once damage is proved, this would kick in criminal part.

If you get in trouble, always request proof of agreement between your name and accuser. That should clear things up. In states, it is usually referred as 5th amendment rights (not to be coersed into agreement).
 

USAFRet

Illustrious
Moderator


It violates the licensing agreement between the friend's company and Microsoft. Not a 'criminal' violation, but a licensing violation nonetheless.

Will they get 'caught'? No.
 

yhikum

Honorable
Apr 1, 2013
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The assumption is that there is agreement, isn't there? License is agreement, but how would Microsoft obtain proof in the first place? It is them, who would need to show proof FIRST.
 

USAFRet

Illustrious
Moderator


Not sure what you're saying here. The licensing agreement is between the friends employer and Microsoft. The friend does not have the rights to sub-license that HUP copy.
 

yhikum

Honorable
Apr 1, 2013
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And is it sub-licensing? There was no monetary gain involved, was there?

If there was no monetary gain, what is damage? And most importantly to whom? Microsoft? Friend? Or perhaps, license got morally injured :)
 

USAFRet

Illustrious
Moderator


The monetary 'gain' is to our original poster. He gets use of a several hundred dollar application for basically nothing. The theoretical loss is to Microsoft, in that they lose out on a retail sale. Do people do this all the time? Sure. But don't kid yourself that it is not a 'licensing violation'.

From the MS Home Use Program FAQ: http://www.microsoft.com/licensing/software-assurance/faq.aspx#faq_3
What products can I get through HUP?
The list of products varies by region, offering, application, version, and language. HUP typically offers your qualifying employees Microsoft’s most popular and newest Office System products, for a fraction of what they would pay to own the products outright. As an example, your qualifying employees who use Office Professional Plus 2010 on their work computers at your company would be eligible to acquire the HUP equivalent (Office Professional Plus 2010 HUP or Office 2011 for Mac, not both) for use on their home (or mobile) computers.

Do I have any other responsibilities?
As the Volume Licensing customer, you are not responsible for your individual employee’s compliance with the Home Use Program end-user license terms. Those terms are between Microsoft and the individual employee. We do require that you limit Home Use Program access to employees and tell them when they should discontinue use of the Home Use Program software—for example if your Software Assurance coverage ends or the employee leaves employment.
 

yhikum

Honorable
Apr 1, 2013
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You confuse monetary gain, with use of software. They are different. You can pick up a branch on road and call it 'gain', but yet no damage has been done since neither nobody got hurt, nor claimed branch for themselves prior to action. Hence, use of 'gain' is not valid in context. You would have better luck with word 'use', since topic we're discussing amounts to it. And even then, use is not guarded, nor restricted, nor dependent upon money from Friend, nor Microsoft even knows that damage is there, nor Microsoft can assert any damage. Why then you suggest it is violation? The only violation is in your mind, nobody can claim there is damage.


The terms are still not known to us, even if Microsoft says various things on their website.
 
Jul 16, 2013
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So to confirm, what I've gathered from this is that:

1. The software itself is safe, and not in any way similar to pirated versions, etc, since it comes straight from Microsoft.

2. Nothing bad would happen to me, my friend, or my pc if I download this, and even if they somehow deactivated my copy I'd just buy a retail one then rather than now.

3. I would be going against some of Microsoft's terms, but not much more than anyone who doesn't uninstall this when they leave their job and in the end, Microsoft isn't even sure what their own rules are in the first place.


Is this a good summary?
 
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