updated 04:45 pm EDT, Mon August 27, 2007
'Genuine Advantage' gaffe
Microsoft has yet to offer a reason for problems with its Genuine Advantage (WGA) service, which stopped functioning properly between Friday night and Saturday morning. Though it was fixed by later on Saturday, the glitch temporarily identified many legal copies of Windows as illegal, crippling their features. While WGA can disable relatively little in copies of Windows XP, much more can be harmed in Vista, such as the Aero interface and the DirectX API, the latter of which is crucial to many media services, such as games. The only temporary solution is to disable anything that contacts WGA, at the cost of updates and patches. Since remedying its servers, Microsoft has offered to help restore affected copies of Windows to their full functionality.
The recent outage is not the first the company has experienced; similar ones occurred in October and November of 2006, but this is the first to affect Vista, Microsoft's new flagship operating system. It was originally feared that another WGA fix might have to wait until Tuesday. [via InformationWeek]