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I'm attempting to make several test machines virtual. Ideally I'd like to setup several images with various installed software - eg. windows 7 with quickbooks 2010, vista with quickbooks 2009, etc - save the images, then restart them later as needed on other hosts.

My question is: will I run into licensing issues? I own licenses for all the software so I'm no worried about whether this is permitted or not, I'm asking if practically I will run into issues with software refusing to run for any reason.

Haven't decided between xen/vmware/virtualbox for the virtualization environment, if that makes any difference.

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in its simplest form the windows guests will run fine but there may be name collision issues. –  tony roth Jul 26 '10 at 18:39
    
Most will not notice the different host (though they will likely notice the different MAC address, it's usually not a problem). Licenses generally don't care, but you might double check the exact license text. Licensing has gotten a little fuzzy, the old licenses especially which state that you can install the software on one machine (where they really mean you can install the software once on a copy of Windows). Sometimes the companies have updates license agreements you can switch to. –  Chris S Jul 26 '10 at 18:48
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2 Answers

You shouldn't have a problem. The virtual machine doesn't have any idea what physical machine it is running on, so it shouldn't know that the hardware under it has changed.

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mrdenny is right on. If you are going to be running the clones on the same network, I would suggest changing the hostname and IP. :D –  JakeRobinson Jul 31 '10 at 5:50
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You may run into problems with the machine SID if you run multiple VM's simultaneously, especially if the VM's are joined to a domain.

This is not specifically a license problem, though. It's not that hard to change the a Machine SID, using something like sysprep.

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Duplicate SID issues are a myth. blogs.technet.com/b/markrussinovich/archive/2009/11/03/… –  JakeRobinson Jul 31 '10 at 5:47
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