Linked by Eugenia Loli on Mon 25th Sep 2006 05:30 UTC
Windows Windows XP is turning five years old, but will anybody want to celebrate the occasion? Microsoft's long-anticipated replacement for 'Win 9x' - the series of releases that began with Windows 95 and ended with Windows Millennium Edition - was never supposed to stick around this long. But half a decade after it began shipping on new computers (followed a month later by its retail debut), XP lingers.
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Activation anyone?
by HappyGod on Mon 25th Sep 2006 07:40 UTC
HappyGod
Member since:
2005-10-19

He didn't even touch on the thing that sent me bolting away from WinXP; Activation.

Only Microsoft would have the arrogance to force you into activating something that you've already paid for. And this disturbing trend is now spreading to other vendors as well.

Imaging what it will be like once EVERY vendor implements activation for EVERY piece of software. Users won't be able to click away the baloon messages fast enough, what a nightmare ...

Reply Score: 4

RE: Activation anyone?
by Lobotomik on Mon 25th Sep 2006 09:52 in reply to "Activation anyone?"
Lobotomik Member since:
2006-01-03

If you've had the misfortune of having to use engineering apps for Windows (AutoCAD, OrCAD, Altera MAXyou would know that product activation has existed for a long, long time before XP, even before widespread internet, and in much more user-hostile implementations.

I have had to deal with stacks of dongles plugged in the parallel port and with 30-character long activation keys generated from seed keys generated by the software, and then faxed to and fro half around the world. Floating licenses, computer-tied licensed, user-licenses, the works. And whenever Windows 3x or 9x rotted and needed to be reinstalled, the whole procedure had to be repeated. For each component in the software stack.

So, why has XP activation survived? Well, because it is really not that inconvenient, and people don't really value their freedom that much, and don't really care about Microsoft, Sony or whoever snooping into their computers and then calling back home with the details.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: Activation anyone?
by ma_d on Mon 25th Sep 2006 15:25 in reply to "RE: Activation anyone?"
ma_d Member since:
2005-06-29

Yes, activation has always been common on software that costs over $2,000 per seat.

It's sad, but I'm not sure they could continue that business model without it. Maybe they should just find a better business model though? I can't think of one to suggest, but maybe you can.

Windows, on the other hand, is usually shipped pre-installed on the computer. You have to pay for it this way. And each lost sale is a tiny loss ($83 for XP OEM last I knew, factored against the odds this intellectual property infringer would have paid for it if they had to) when compared to how many valid users it annoys.


Anyway, as was probably predicted. Almost everyone was mad over activation, and 99% of them aren't mad anymore and have just gotten used to it.
I wonder if it'll be just that, or a frog in the boiling pot sort of thing. Will we someday have to fax Redmond all of our personal identification to login and not realize how horribly obnoxious that is?

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Activation anyone?
by HappyGod on Tue 26th Sep 2006 02:30 in reply to "RE: Activation anyone?"
HappyGod Member since:
2005-10-19

Not that inconvenient? Try activating over the phone.

It takes about 10 minutes, and involves some incredibly long numbers being read out over the phone in a monotonous robotic voice and then typed into a dialogue.

I consider it extremely inconvenient.

Reply Parent Score: 1