Pirate Windows? Buy The Retail Version at a $100 Discount
May 15, 2006 2:04 AM
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The counterfeit notification
Clicking the counterfeit notification gives the user the ability to purchase a new license
Upgrading from an openly pirated version of windows costs a mere $149
The checkout process completed
Users running illegal copies of Windows XP are being offered discounted purchase prices
Recently in the
labs we had a test bed machine that was giving us "this copy of Windows is not genuine" messages. Last week we tried to remedy the message by following Microsoft's recommended course of action, which was to verify the copy through its website and purchase a legitimate key. When we attempted to do so, Microsoft's website indicated that the upgrade service was not available to US customers (or any customers as far as we could tell).
On a whim we tried again this evening and it appears that Microsoft has updated its website and now allows US users of pirated or counterfeit versions of Windows XP to buy legitimate keys for $149 each -- a unique key is still required for each computer that runs Windows XP. The full version of Microsoft Windows XP Professional
retails for $249.99
, which means if you purchase the CD and key from Microsoft, there is a net savings of $100. The OEM version of Windows XP can be purchased online from online vendors, but this discounted version requires the purchase of hardware. Microsoft waives all shipping and handling charges, but sales taxes is still added onto the purchase.
The new Genuine Advantage program is intended for unsuspecting users who have inadvertently purchased counterfeit copies of Windows XP. To fight against piracy while allowing honest customers to go legit, Microsoft is allowing users a discounted purchase option while informing users that an authentic Windows XP will benefit from greater support and security. All high risk security updates are still available via Windows Update for illegitimate copies of the operating system, but non-critical updates require legitimate keys.
reported that pirated versions of Windows Vista would be crippled
. It appears that Microsoft will begin using more aggressive tactics to persuade users to purchase legitimate copies of the Windows operating system.
People looking for instant gratification however will be disappointed. Once a customer purchases the "Genuine Advantage Kit" from Microsoft's website, it may take up to 10 days before the product key is sent. Users will also receive a Windows XP CD in the mail, but this will take 2-4 weeks for delivery. A Microsoft Passport account is also required to receive your CD key, but an account can be created for free within a few minutes.
Microsoft previously had a program where users would send in the pirated installation disc as well as a receipt of where the illegal copy of Windows XP or system it came on was purchased from. The requirement was later scratched because it was decided that the process was too much of a hassle for consumers. Microsoft still has other methods of "getting legit," including a program where you can get a free copy of Windows if you reveal the source where you obtained the pirated copy.
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5/15/2006 9:04:46 PM
All it has proven is that folks will steal if they think they won't get caught.
I'm sure that is a reason for some but definitely not all. I'm going to agree with the other poster about convenience. It IS indeed a non-hassle when running a pirated copy of Windows. You can reinstall to your hearts delight. Install whatever patches you want and there's no issues whatsoever. It doesn't matter at all how easy it is to get solve these issues. What matters is that the paying customer has to get around these issues but the illegal user does not. How right or fair is that?
“And I don't know why [Apple is] acting like it’s superior. I don't even get it. What are they trying to say?” -- Bill Gates on the Mac ads
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