Section 2 of 8
In Progress

Differences between various editions of Windows

7th December 2022

Aim: Understanding the differences between Home, Pro, Enterprise editions of Windows and how that impacts on device management 

You’re likely already aware there are different editions of the Windows operating system and it’s helpful to understand how that can impact your adoption of a cloud management solution. 
If you or your staff and students purchase a typical Windows tablet, laptop or desktop device off the shelf at your typical “bricks and mortar” computer store in the UK, it will likely come with Windows Home edition or sometimes Windows Pro edition pre-installed and activated.  If you have a device with Windows Home edition, you can in-place upgrade the operating system using a product key to get the added feature set of Windows Pro edition – in other words, the features are disabled but can be activated with a valid product key. 

 Beyond Windows Pro edition, if you have a Microsoft academic volume licensing agreement or Microsoft online services subscription, you may be entitled to activate some additional features available in Enterprise or Education editions of Windows. 

That said, to manage devices using Intune, the device will need to run at least Windows Pro edition to join the device to an Azure Active Directory domain.  Other notable benefits to using a Pro edition of Windows include features such as BitLocker for drive encryption and the ability to approve software updates from a central point such as through Windows Update for Business

 The advantage of using Enterprise and Education editions of Windows over and above the Pro edition come mainly down to additional security features, such as Windows Defender Application Guard (formerly AppLocker).