Sorry for the poor title, I'll explain better here. Microsoft provides free Win 7/8/10 Enterprise VM's inorder to test modern browsers here:


I want to use the OS for something different than testing websites on browsers, for testing some software I wrote. But I don't know if the VM Microsoft provides is restricted in features or is different than its vanilla counterpart (a regular Win 7 OS you license)

I looked at the 'Microsoft Software License Terms for the IE VMs' briefly but couldn't see any sections that outlined differences

  • 5
    The OP is not asking about licensing (which is explicitly stated as being for evaluation only); he's asking whether the VMs are functionally equivalent to their full counterparts, or are somehow stripped down.
    – Massimo
    Jul 11, 2016 at 20:12
  • Yes, I am asking what Massimo said Jul 11, 2016 at 20:29
  • "Questions should demonstrate reasonable business information technology management practices. Questions that relate to unsupported [..] software platforms [..] may not be suitable for Server Fault" and "Questions must be about managing information technology systems in a business environment. [..] questions about development, testing and development tools may be asked on Stack Overflow." - you want to use an unsupported test tool, outside its license agreement (which is for non-commercial use anyway); this isn't reasonable IT management practice. Way off topic :P Jul 11, 2016 at 21:10
  • In my experience, they work fine with other apps. The main restriction on them is they have a 30 day ticking time bomb - the install will stop working after that. Take a snapshot before you start it the first time to be able to reset that counter.
    – ceejayoz
    Jul 11, 2016 at 21:33

3 Answers 3


To learn more about those VM too on my side, I asked your question on a private channel I have with MS and from a well known IE MVP I got this answer;

There are no limits and they are not stripped down.

nb. Limit for using the VM for testing anything, not for the actual activation limit.

  • 2
    Well, that's clearly not the case. "Please note that these virtual machines expire after 90 days" is a limit.
    – ceejayoz
    Jul 12, 2016 at 18:06
  • @ceejayoz I can revert the snapshot so limits doesn't bother me. I am looking for possibly stripped down parts. Also I'd accept this answer but I can't really verify the legitimacy :/ Jul 12, 2016 at 18:13
  • @ceejayoz Limit was told for testing other stuff than IE, not the time limit
    – yagmoth555
    Jul 12, 2016 at 18:17
  • 1
    @yagmoth555 Well for any future users that stumble across the question they cannot verify it for themselves. Maybe let a moderator know the proof? Il accept the question if no other answers are made a bit later Jul 12, 2016 at 18:26
  • 1
    @BDillan All of the answers are correct. There are no functionality limits ... unless the evaluation period runs out. Jul 13, 2016 at 0:36

Functionally there are no restrictions on the system / OS. They do, however, maintain the usual evaluation licensing restrictions -- meaning they are for short-term, test use only. If you're going to do anything long-term or production based, you'll need to get the appropriate licensing.


The VMs are not restricted. You can install whatever software you like provided it's compatible with the operating system.

I have used these frequently to test out Group Policy in labs, testing deployment of software in SCCM, and for testing programs I've written on multiple platforms.

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