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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5/20/2006 6:47:15 AM
We have ethical problems because you are confusing YOUR ethics with altruism. Your subjective opinion has it's place, but that place stops right about when you try to project it onto others.
For the record-
1) It's not "theft". Illegal yes, theft no.
2) It is ridiculous to project that people are rationalizing pirated software due to open source sw.
3) The thing we have to remember is, first things first. Before Windows XP became this desirable to copy software, MS became a monopoly that had to necessarily be ended. XP cannot belong to MS because MS cannot exist to own it. Fair is fair, we can't just ignore one reality to presuppose another in the same context.
4) It has nothing to do with copying software. It has to do with the license to run it.
5) We can have a million moral or ethical reasons to do something that is illegal, and indeed we do, do things moral and ethical (as considered by the majority) that are illegal in other countries. Do not confuse legality with morality or ethics. They are not the same even if you subjectively want them to be. That doesn't excuse illegal behavior though, it is nonetheless illegal if one disagrees with it morally.
6) Trying to impose your values on others is the same mindset that has cost mankind all those nasty wars and millions of deaths. There can be no doubt that taken issue by issue, all of us do "something" that at least one other person finds wrong in some way. Maybe your shoes cause the death of innocent cows. Who knows, there are always excuses to look down one's nose at another who isn't just like "us".
"This week I got an iPhone. This weekend I got four chargers so I can keep it charged everywhere I go and a land line so I can actually make phone calls." -- Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg
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