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View Full Version : Paul Thurrot on Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA)



PryGuy
July 24th, 2006, 07:26 AM
Here's a very interesting article I've found yesterday on the Paul Thurrot's site:

I've found Microsoft's recent forays into customer relations with Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) to be somewhat amusing. I mean, after all, Microsoft is a huge company just brimming with really smart people. How could they do something so silly?

If you're not up on the WGA saga, here's a recap. Microsoft announced its Genuine Advantage software initiative in March 2006. It's designed as part of the company's wider assault on software piracy (another infamous part of this fight, Product Activation, won fame and fortune for Microsoft went XP was released in late 2001). The Genuine Advantage initiative is comprised of three parts: Education (customers should understand the risks of pirated software), Engineering (Microsoft's ongoing investment in anti-counterfeiting technologies and product features), and Enforcement (Microsoft is helping law enforcement agencies go after the world's worst software pirates).

WGA is a component of the Engineering part of that unholy triumvirate. It's a bit of software that gets installed on Windows XP (it's part of Windows Vista right out of the gate, naturally) and is comprised of two components. The first, dubbed WGA Validation, determines whether the version of Windows on which its running is legitimate. The second component, WGA Notifications, displays annoying alerts on pirated Windows copies and provides a way for the user to pay for a legitimate copy of Windows.

Read more... (http://www.winsupersite.com/showcase/wga.asp)

Your comments, please! :D

croak77
July 24th, 2006, 07:35 AM
Lame.

MaximB
July 24th, 2006, 07:57 AM
it reminds me of sony
some time ago they published there music cd's with a anti-copy software
that could harm your computer - the lost big time !!!
all there cd's were putten from the shelves.
I thing it is our right to make a copy of the cd you just bought
it's like you doing a backup
I had bought a software cd that just crushed in my cd-rom
I got lucky to have a backup of this.

jonathan21
July 24th, 2006, 12:10 PM
WGA is a load of crap.they need some otherway to find pirated versions and close them down.personally don't use windows anymore except when there is a program i can't run on ubuntu otherwise i don't use it at all.thanks for continuing the debate on wga i hopefully this will get microsft to see that wga is crap.they will probaly use some other program next so watch this space.

PryGuy
July 24th, 2006, 12:15 PM
Yeah, and note please, Thurrot is a Windows fan to the bones! WGA is really a crap if even he writes this! We are waitng for his Ubuntu review!!! The next thing that is obvious! :D

3rdalbum
July 24th, 2006, 01:20 PM
I like WGA, it drives a lot of people to Linux.

PryGuy
July 24th, 2006, 01:23 PM
:) :) :)

BWF89
July 24th, 2006, 01:56 PM
I like WGA, it drives a lot of people to Linux.
When you have DRM on a competators OS like Windows people say that it's a good thing because it'll drive people to Linux. When you have DRM on a cool new computer game you just bought or the latest cd from BestBuy and it has DRM on it people complain and say that the corporations are trampling on their rights. I think the software world would just be better if we didn't have DRM anywhere.

Yossarian
July 24th, 2006, 02:12 PM
Thurott's a good writer, and he runs one of the best windows websites around.

He mentioned once that he likes Ubuntu, actually.

vayu
July 24th, 2006, 04:49 PM
WGA is a load of crap.they need some otherway to find pirated versions and close them down.

No, they need to figure out that the person pirating software is not someone who would buy anyway. The pirate software is only increasing their base and not decreasing their profit.

apollo1900
July 24th, 2006, 05:08 PM
I like WGA, it drives a lot of people to Linux.

You have deep insight. ;)

So technically the "advantage" is really in our direction. :)

blastus
July 25th, 2006, 01:23 AM
No, they need to figure out that the person pirating software is not someone who would buy anyway. The pirate software is only increasing their base and not decreasing their profit.

Exactly; the non-consumer consumer isn't going to buy. ;) I don't think anybody (except businesses) gives a bovine spongiform about whether they are running "Genuine" Windows.

The only people I can possibly see forking out more cash for their possibly 5 year old computers are technically inept users who are scared of the WGA notifications and the mention of the word "counterfeiting" (just like they are scared of the "Your computer may be at risk" notifications.) But these people will likely even be scared of going through the "Get Genuine" process because they know they have been suspected of counterfeiting and know that if they go through the process Microsoft will know too.

Eventually they'll find out that WGA is BS and can be ignored, or they'll go out and buy a new computer out of fear, or they'll be so scared they won't use their computer anymore.

PryGuy
July 25th, 2006, 06:57 AM
Yeah, funny fact I have remembered reading the previous post: one of my friends decided to go legal and bought WindowsXP finally. And what do you think? He got f****d up with all the activation messages and all and cracked it finally. :)

croak77
July 30th, 2006, 02:44 AM
Just a follow up note;

Turns out he did have a pirated version of Windows XP Media Center Edition.

K.Mandla
July 30th, 2006, 03:05 AM
I was looking for this thread.

My brother the MCSE got the "you-don't-have-a-valid-copy" message on his laptop today. Except his is a valid copy.

Man, was he angry. He immediately started swearing and looking all over the Internet for a way to disable it.

I just laughed and pointed at my Xubuntu laptop.

P.S.: It seems it can be disabled (not removed, just disabled) by renaming two files. That's not very tough.

Polygon
July 30th, 2006, 06:32 AM
well some DRM is good, i mean take a look at steam and valve games. Its drm, except its implemented properly. You enter your cd key for your game, and its taken and cant be used again. its basically impossible to pirate a steam game, unless you sell your account or something. and if you get caught hacking, you get banned and all of your steam games are banned too.

drm is not a bad thing, it makes companies who make a living off of what they do make sure that people dont ruin it by pirating it and distributing it all over the internet without paying

i believe that drm is fine... as long as its impemented properly, unline windows.

Dr. C
July 30th, 2006, 06:05 PM
I believe that drm is fine... as long as its impemented properly, unline windows.

... and what happens if your hard drive fails? Do you get banned?

I have not yet seen a version of DRM that those not cause problems to legitimate end users.

panickedthumb
July 30th, 2006, 06:53 PM
... and what happens if your hard drive fails? Do you get banned?

I have not yet seen a version of DRM that those not cause problems to legitimate end users.
no, you just reinstall windows, reinstall steam, log back in, and your games are still activated.

Dr. C
July 30th, 2006, 10:02 PM
And how does one recover from a hard drive faliure if the stream servers are down or the company goes out of business?