Oh my God, Microsoft's new licensing terms for Office could be even worse than I thought.
Some say that the HARD DRIVE constitues a new PC according to MS support:
I inquired with them on a sales chat. They said I could re-install on the same machine, but not if I changed just my hard drive
Ian: How do you define a new PC? Can I re-format my PC and reinstall? What if I upgrade to an SSD? John Y [MS REP]: Yes, you can reformat and reinstall. Basically if this is a new hard drive or completely new PC you cannot transfer the software
MS usually defined the motherboard as the main PC piece. If you changed that, you got a new computer. But as anyone with a bit of IT knowledge knows, hard drives have usually a shorter life than mainboards. Of all PC components, hard drives are also the most sensitive to physical hits, shaking, jolting (entirely possible with a notebook). If it's true what the sales rep said, then MS has decided to tie Office to the most unreliable piece in a computer. Genius move!