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Microsoft drops 'killswitch' from Windows Vista

updated 12:10 pm EST, Tue December 4, 2007

Vista 'killswitch' removed

Bowing to pressure, Microsoft will soon remove an anti-piracy measure from Windows Vista that cripples the software, say Reuters and BBC News. Vista Service Pack 1, which should be available in the first quarter of 2008, will strip away software that renders Vista all but unusable if the Windows Genuine Advantage tool deems an OS illegal. The difficulty, Microsoft has admitted, is that it in numerous cases the tool has misreported copies of Vista, locking legitimate users out of their own purchases.

Instead, says Microsoft VP Mike Sievert, Genuine Advantage will merely scan systems occasionally, checking to see whether they are properly activated. Invalid copies will trigger notices with a link to purchase a legal copy. "It's worth re-emphasizing that our fundamental strategy has not changed," Sievert notes.

Reflecting this, the Pack will also close two loopholes used by pirates: one which lets pirates simulate activation, and another which artificially extends the time limit between installation and mandatory registration.



By Electronista Staff
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  1. ClevelandAdv

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jul 2004

    0

    Genuine Disadvantage

    From the first time I saw Genuine Advantage it was obvious that this would only result in legal copies being disabled.

    If I know my copy is legal, there is only a disadvantage to have this software on my system.

    I held out as long as possible to keep this off my XP install, and would have opted-out if I could have for Vista.

  1. jimothy

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Sep 2000

    0

    Doing a favor

    I'd say Microsoft was doing the user a favor by triggering the kill switch.

    (Come on, it had to be said!)

  1. climacs

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Sep 2001

    0

    assholery

    once again, Microsoft shows how user un-friendly they are.

    Mac OS X? You SHOULD purchase one copy per computer... but there is no snitch software included. Yet another reason to get a Mac.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    0

    Re: assholery

    Mac OS X? You SHOULD purchase one copy per computer... but there is no snitch software included. Yet another reason to get a Mac.

    Not now. But who's to say what Apple will be putting in there, esp. with Apple getting oh so popular. Hey, they do it with their pro apps...

  1. koolkid1976

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2003

    0

    re: re: assholery

    What Apple pro apps have kill switches?

  1. manleycreative

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Sep 2005

    0

    Apple won't need to

    …include a snitch feature with their OS because they make the computer too. Steve Jobs has always been about the hardware with the OS just part of the whole. If he had taken the software more seriously he would have got a patent on the OS before showing it to Billy boy and having him rip it off. Hence, we wouldn't even be talking about this Vista problem today.

    Apple is glad you bought the computer and if anything wants to make sure you will buy another soon. The OS is a carrot on a stick and if more people scam it then maybe more people will want to get the computer that comes with it.

  1. climacs

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Sep 2001

    0

    testudo strikes again

    for the love of FSM give your knee-jerk anti-Appleism a rest.

  1. climacs

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Sep 2001

    0

    re: re: assholery

    "Not now. But who's to say what Apple will be putting in there, esp. with Apple getting oh so popular. Hey, they do it with their pro apps..."

    And maybe Apple will start selling eight different versions of OS X, and maybe the sky will fall, and maybe Bush will tell the truth for once in his life.

  1. jumbojet

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2002

    0

    Kill Switch

    No Apple pro apps have "kill switches." I believe some have the same mechanism that Photoshop uses, where if it spots another copy on the network with the same SN it will require you to quit one.

  1. Peter Bonte

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2001

    0

    FM pro 9

    Filemaker pro 9 has an "iTunes-like" DRM copy protection, it works ok and offers enough freedom to work with. I'm convinced iTunes and its fairplay DRM can and will be used for software copy protection.

    That said, this has nothing to do with the protection itself, it's MS trying to make Vista more appealing over XP. If they drop this protection it makes Vista more open than XP.

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