Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 11th Feb 2010 20:56 UTC
Windows Sometimes, you come across news items that make you go "eh...?" This is definitely one of them: Microsoft has announced a new anti-piracy update for Windows 7 that phones home every 90 days to check for new activation cracks, but the update is entirely optional - which kind of makes me wonder about the point.
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FurryOne
Member since:
2006-01-23

Microsoft apologists aside, are there people out there really stupid enough to think this is about protecting the Customer? Windows gets loaded on what?... 90+% of new computers - that's money directly into Microsoft's pocket even though they don't print a manual, make disks, or much of anything else for the Customer, and they're worried about piracy.
How much closer to printing money do they need to get?

Reply Score: -1

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Consumers shouldn't be sold a computer with an OS that was downloaded from a p2p network. That's a huge security risk.

Reply Parent Score: 3

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Bittorrent is a very valid way to download an OS. It's original development purpose was to take the strain off single storage servers by spreading the download source among many. The ISO still has to pass it's check sum based on the hash provided by the original packager but as long as you stick with major distribution providers, your golden.

Now, I wouldn't say the same for a single source P2P protocol like Napster the generations that followed. A complete ISO hosted by some random unknown user's machine is far more suspect than parts of that ISO from many sources. It may not fail the check sum after download but there's a much higher risk in the source.

The lack of P2P protocol involvement also doesn't negate piracy. (piracy in the real sense of reselling stollen goods with or without "value add" malware)

There have been some huge busts in Europe. One was millions of dollars worth of perfectly replicated Windows boxed disks. Certificates, shrinkrap and everything. The crime group responsible had also injected malware into the images before stamping out the disks. This was stuff bound for store shelves and passing it into legitimate supply chains isn't hard to do. No downloading, no P2P and little chance of discovery had the truck loads not been discovered at the factory or within the first short leg of the journey.

Reply Parent Score: 3

darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Do I think it's designed to protect consumers? Not really. But purpose aside, it will accomplish this for the most part. I don't like Microsoft, I don't use Windows nor will I ever install it on a machine I own. But I sometimes think we respond with blind hate whenever we see the word "Microsoft" in a sentence. No matter what the original purpose of this update, it will have a positive effect on the majority of users and by extension will reduce the number of malware-infected computers I have to deal with. So I'm all for it if people really must continue to use Windows.

Reply Parent Score: 4

tomcat Member since:
2006-01-06

Microsoft apologists aside, are there people out there really stupid enough to think this is about protecting the Customer? Windows gets loaded on what?... 90+% of new computers - that's money directly into Microsoft's pocket even though they don't print a manual, make disks, or much of anything else for the Customer, and they're worried about piracy.
How much closer to printing money do they need to get?


But it is about the customer. There are countless machines out there that have hacked versions of Windows on them that can't be updated through Windows Update because the hack explicitly turns off automatic updates. Meanwhile, the machines are getting infected with every possible brand of malware. So, what kind of experience is that for the customer? This wouldn't be an issue if they were running genuine Windows.

Secondly, why are you complaining about Microsoft selling its product and making a profit? I mean, we all pay phone bills, rent/mortgages, car payments, etc, and nobody begrudges those people their money. What makes software different? It's a product. Just like any other product, except you can't hold it in your hands. Microsoft invested millions of dollars developing that product and, whether you agree with this or not, they deserve to sell it. If you don't like it, that's fine. Don't use it. Buy a Mac. Or get a Linux box. But stop pretending that Microsoft is being unreasonable for expecting to be paid for a product that it created. That's just retarded.

Reply Parent Score: 4

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

MS could have allowed security, or at minimum critical, updates to continue but blocked non-critical and "value add" type updates. They could have even tried a true "value added" approach rather than spinning survelance as some kind of consumer beneficial privacy invasion. MS can afford some of the smartest programmers in the world; they had options.

Reply Parent Score: 2