Hello Paul, If I understand you correctly, your friend is giving his daughter a computer from which all of his commercial applications software has been removed. He has bought a new computer on which he wants to load all of his application software that was on his old computer. If that is the case, then there is no problem at all with any licensing that I'm aware of. He purchased a license to use the software. If he buys a new computer, as long as he destroys any copies on the old computer he can load the new machine up with his existing application software. I have done this myself, numerous times. For example, my computer currently has a properly licensed copy of Microsoft Office 2003, which has been upgraded through every version since Office 95. I originally installed Office 95 about 4 computers ago. I just moved the license from computer to computer as I acquired new ones, destroying the copy on the old machine each time, so I am 100% legal. On newer software, Microsoft, and perhaps other vendors I don't know about, do have a process that requires you register the software during installation. When your friend does the installation, he may be asked about this. All that should be required is for him to explain that he is transferring the license to a new machine. When I built my latest computer about 18 months ago, I installed Office 2002 on it, which I originally registered with Microsoft on the computer I was replacing. I never even was asked about it. The install went flawlessly, and the registration process didn't even blink at the change in hardware. Now you pose an interesting question in "...code which indelibly links one piece of application software to one computer and no other". The short answer is, when installing from CD that is not possible. In order to do this, the installation would have to write information back to the installation disk and commercial CDs are not writable. I did have one piece of software that came on floppy disk (this was many years ago) that did write information to the install disk. In that case, it limited you to a total of three installations before the install disk was rendered useless. The way around it? Simple. Copy the install disk, put the original away safe and sound, and install from the copy. When the copy ran out of installs, copy the original again and off you go for another round of three installations. I found out about this because I routinely write-protected my install floppy disks. When the install complained about not being able to write to the disk, I said to myself "why does it want to write to the installation disk?" So I copied it, and let it write to the copy first. Then, after successfully installing, it told me I had two installs left. So after saying "Ah HA!", and seeing if I could determine exactly what it wrote to the disk (I couldn't at that time, I probably could now if I were determined enough), I just wrote a tally mark on the label of the copy and moved on about my business. The other point I should make is about the operating system. He can give his daughter the computer with his validly licensed copy of Windows already installed, but he must also transfer the Windows CD to his daughter with the computer and he must not be running a copy of Windows installed from the same installation CD. His new computer must be running a different, also legally licensed copy of Windows to be legal. As far as companies being vigilant about piracy, most companies do make an effort of some sort to combat it. Some companies are more diligent and pro-active about it than others. While larger companies are targeted more often for software audits to ensure they are legal, it is not unheard of for a small-time pirate to get caught. Many applications do "phone home" these days, and it's conceivable that if your friend does engage in a bit of "skull-and-crossbones" software acquisition or distribution, he could get caught and have to pay a fine. How likely that is I truly have no idea, but my guess would be fairly low. I have never heard of an individual pirating software in small numbers and on a casual "convenience" basis (i.e. he has two computers and loads each with a copy of software he has one license for) to be caught and prosecuted. That doesn't mean it hasn't or can't happen though. The only software that I know for sure reports back home to make casual pirating more risky is Microsoft products including Office and Windows itself. I am very much anti-piracy and strongly advocate buying the proper licenses for all software, regardless of the risk (or lack of risk) of getting caught. Hope that helps, Ron Wednesday, October 27, 2004, 6:30:07 PM, you wrote: PMK> A friend is giving an old computer to his daughter after PMK> reformatting the hard disk and reinstalling WIN98SE. She owns PMK> little application software and much of what she has is freeware, PMK> shareware or in the public domain. PMK> On the other hand, He has several hundred dollars worth of PMK> commercial application software he would like to move to a new PMK> computer. It is currently on CDs. He is unsure of the status of PMK> it and reluctant to reread all the registration agreements to see PMK> what's legal and what isn't. Most likely, he wouldn't understand PMK> it all if he does. PMK> Can we have some opinions on practical approaches to this PMK> problem since everyone is affected at some time with similar PMK> problems? PMK> Are there serious risks to associated with downloading the CDs to a new computer? PMK> Are there problems with code which indelibly links one PMK> piece of application software to one computer and no other? PMK> Are many companies vigilant about pursuing and punishing PMK> individuals who disregard licensing agreements or only the PMK> biggies? For a web-based membership management utility and information on list policies, please see http://nibec.com/24hoursupport/ To unsubscribe, send a blank email to 24hoursupport-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx with "unsubscribe" (without quotes) in the subject.