Here is some great news for our volume licensing customers who may need access to older versions of some of their Microsoft products.  In September, several N-2 versions of products will be available for download on the Microsoft Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC) site.  Currently, with limited exception, access to older versions of products (N-2 and beyond) are not supported on the Microsoft Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC).  What this means is, only the current version (N) and the version prior to current version (N-1) software can be downloaded from the Microsoft Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC), for those with licenses for those products. 

As of July, 2010, Microsoft has made available two N-2 version products through the Microsoft Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC):

  • Windows XP upgrades
    • N-1 = Windows Vista
    • N = Windows 7
  • Windows Server 2003 R2
    • N-1 = Windows Server 2008
    • N = Windows Server 2008 R2

Now, starting in September, Microsoft will be adding N-2 versions of three additional product families for downloading through the Microsoft Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC):

  • Microsoft Office 2003
    • N-1 = Office 2007
    • N = Office 2010
  • SQL Server 2005
    • N-1 = SQL Server 2008
    • N = SQL Server 2008 R2
  • Exchange Server 2003
    • N-1 = Exchange Server 2007
    • N = Exchange Server 2010

Customers who have licensed software through a Microsoft Volume Licensing program are eligible to use prior versions of the software edition they have licensed. This capability is known as "downgrade rights."  You can read more about Downgrade Rights in the following resources:

You can also read more about this announcement in the Microsoft Volume Licensing Fulfillment Information update on the Microsoft Licensing website. 

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Eric LigmanFollow me on TWITTER, LinkedIn, and RSS and see “What I’m thinking
Global Partner Experience Lead
Microsoft Worldwide Partner Group
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