Windows ENTERPRISE license alternatives

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Windows ENTERPRISE license alternatives

Post: #1000 brainout
06 Nov 2015, 05:37

This just in, I learned that you don't have to own a bazillion Windows machines to get Windows Enterprise. But it's expensive, and there are restrictions. Click here to read the post, and keep reading until that subtopic ends.

An Enterprise license is not subject to telemetry, privacy intrusion and forced updates, etc. You don't even have to use Win10.

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Re: Windows ENTERPRISE license alternatives

Post: #1005 hupostasis
07 Nov 2015, 20:09

Yeah, the enterprise license is designed for servers--which operate with critical data and cannot have forced automatic updates and privacy breaches: so it's no surprise these elements are removed. The same is [somewhat] true also for consumer vs. enterprise hardware-- which is why I generally always run enterprise hardware for my desktops. Enterprise hardware has features such as ECC memory, modified ACPI to disallow computer sleep, allowing more memory than 64 GB which all PCs are limited to, a more intelligent BIOS to restrict what can be booted from USB ports, redundant BIOS ROMs, redundant PSUs, redundant NICs, etc etc etc.

That got me curious, since some of these principles would conflict / be totally unacceptable with U.S. government users, are they put under the same features as Windows 10 consumer users? If they're not, then that means Windows 10 Home / Professional / Ultimate are not suitable for sensitive data. Oddly enough Microsoft does have a page outlining features for government users: ... ePLdEhnSzv
Forbes Insights (for MS) wrote:Note that Microsoft is also hard at work moving to fast-track government certifications such as FIPS 140-2, NIAP/Common Criteria and DISA STIGs, often a requirement for those working in sensitive defense or intelligence agencies.
That would imply that users requiring FIPS 140-2 wouldn't yet be using Windows 10 until Microsoft gets those features fully implemented (which I would like to add, Linux has had file encryption available for a long time).

Woah, and this is where it gets interesting:
Forbes Insights (for MS) wrote:To that end, we are introducing a new approach for business customers, which we are referring to as the Current Branch for Business (CBB). By putting devices on the CBB, enterprises will be able to receive feature updates after their quality and application compatibility has been assessed in the consumer market, while continuing to receive security updates on a regular basis. CBB gives IT departments time to start validating updates in their environments the day changes are shipped broadly to consumers, while also having control through management tools over how the updates are distributed in their environments.
Alternatively, Windows 10 will also be available in a more traditional servicing option known as the Long Term Servicing Branch (LTSB). This will appeal to agencies needing to optimize for control over mission critical environments than agility.
#1 Forbes Insights (presumably on behalf for Microsoft) admits straight up that government users won't be using the standard consumer version of Windows 10 (but instead the Enterprise version). They even link to this page here which is written by Microsoft directly ... p-to-date/ where it continues:
Microsoft wrote:For enterprise customers and partners, we will continue to deliver exclusive value and offer extensive flexibility in how Windows 10 is deployed and managed as Windows evolves to become a service. For companies that require these enterprise-grade capabilities, Windows Software Assurance (SA) will continue to offer the best and most comprehensive benefits. Windows 7 Enterprise and Windows 8/8.1 Enterprise are not included in the terms of free Windows 10 Upgrade offer we announced last week, given active Software Assurance customers will continue to have rights to upgrade to Windows 10 enterprise offerings outside of this offer – while also benefitting from the full flexibility to deploy Windows 10 using their existing management infrastructure.
So then that 'proves' Windows 10 for consumers is NOT suitable for the privacy and stability requirements for enterprise users and the government.

#2 Forbes Insights implies the consumers are Guinea pigs "after their quality and application compatibility has been assessed in the consumer market" for testing the software out first on the non-enterprise versions (presumably having all of that convenient data sent back to via telemetry) and then having the corresponding updates as a non-mandatory option for the "elite" enterprise users.