Is there still a way of picking up Windows for free without having to pirate it?
Kind of. You can just use Windows without a product key, but there are some missing features that way, and an annoying watermark.
That is no longer the case unfortunately, they changed it and now you simply can't use it without a product key.
Oh. I didn’t hear about that.
When did that happen?
It must have been a few months ago. I got informed of that by Marinelli.
Wow. That kinda sucks
Really? I'm asking because my buddy was able to do it a few weeks ago
YES there is, despite all these "no" answers.
Option #1: If you're an entrepreneur or startup, you can easily qualify for the free Microsoft Bizspark program. I got dozens of licenses from there, 100% free, including Win10 Pro, Windows Server 2016 and Office 2016 Pro Plus. Bizspark itself doesn't cost anything either.
Option #2: If you're an university student, it is quite possible your school has a agreement with Microsoft to allow students to get free Windows & Office licenses. Some years ago it was called MSDNAA, not sure what it is today.
Option #3: Almost same as #2 but though your employer. It's not uncommon to buy Windows or Office licences for 10-20 euros. Your employer probably buys large amounts of licences, so Microsoft extends the lower prices for employees as well.
Discontinued several months ago.
There are number of possible caveats depending on region. Educational institution must have agreement with Microsoft. Student may need to be a classified as full time student. Student may need to be majoring in specific area. e.g. computer science, computer engineering... License may only be valid while student in question is registered/classified at qualified educational institution as full time student. Upon leaving the institution, student no longer legally permitted to use software obtained during the attendance of qualified educational institution. At least one member here found out rather abruptly about a year after he graduated from his college. No matter which country/region that the student is in, they should always read the fine print.
Actually, you can continue to use Windows 10 Education even after graduating, so I'm not sure what happened to that user. Maybe Office 365 was no longer free, but when I was looking in to getting Windows 10 Education through my university, I read that I'll be able to use it after college. http://www.onthehub.com/microsoft-windows-10-education-for-students/?utm_source=ms-student-page&utm_medium=microsoft-site&utm_campaign=windows10 Edit: In the first section on this page is where you'll find that you can continue to use Windows 10 Education, even after graduating.
As far as restrictions and requirements, I think it's entirely up to the university what students can get it. On my university's webstore, they list eligibility requirements and they allow all students to get 1 copy.
The sale of those keys violate Microsoft ToS, and the keys may be unexpectedly disabled. Recommending, suggesting, advising, encouraging, hinting, or in any way implying these keys as a solution or option is not allowed on this site.
Windows creation tool
Well it's free to download but not free to use, you still have to purchase a key to activate and access the OS.
No, that breaks the ToS
aka pirating it...