OnLive flips to Windows Server to avoid licensing quarrel

An app that let users run Windows 7 on tablets without paying for a license has adjusted its system to avoid trouble with Microsoft.

OnLive flips to Windows Server to avoid licensing quarrel

Last month, Microsoft said OnLive’s Desktop apps for Android and iOS weren’t “properly licensed”.

The apps offer a Windows desktop via the cloud, using the OnLive gaming system. Microsoft has strict rules about virtual desktops: either the end user must have a license, or the provider must use Windows Server to provide the service, as Windows 7 isn’t allowed to be delivered via a hosted system.

That latter loophole appears to be the one OnLive has taken to continue offering its users access to Office and other Windows applications.

“We’re pleased to have been told that the OnLive Desktop application is now accessing our software by hosting it on Windows Server, an important step in delivering any Microsoft-licensed desktop-like service to the public,” Microsoft said in a statement to Ars Technica.

“Based on this information, we will work with OnLive to take a closer look at its service and ensure it is operating according to its license like thousands of other partners and utilising our standing pricing and licensing terms.”

Licensing complaints

The OnLive system raised concerns about the complexity of Microsoft’s licensing system, with rival hosted desktop firms weighing in on the issue.

Citrix “thanked” OnLive for publicising the Windows as a desktop system, and boosting business for those who were “doing it right”. TuCloud launched its own Desktop on Demand product with the same “creative” licensing interpretation as OnLive, as a “challenge” to Microsoft to adjust its rules.

OnLive wasn’t available to comment at the time of publishing.

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