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Microsoft to limit access to security fixes

The latest tactic to combat piracy

     

balam

7:07 pm on Jan 26, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Microsoft Plans Restrictions on Fixes [story.news.yahoo.com]

The new authentication system, announced Tuesday and due to arrive by midyear, will still allow people with pirated copies of Windows to obtain security fixes, but their options will be limited. The move allows Microsoft to use one of its sharpest weapons access to security patches that can prevent viruses, worms and other crippling attacks to thwart a costly and meddlesome piracy problem.

pendanticist

1:53 am on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I read this and was just about to post the story. :)

As one who always registers, I am all for denying those who have pirated the OS from receiving updates, be they critical or non-critical.

Some would say that all updates should be made available to all who possess it, as the un-repaired vulnerabilities may prolong some types of viruses, etc.

Could not dis-agree more! ( As though the one slighted should shoulder responsibilty for items stolen from them ).

Now, let's see just what kind of freebies they'll packet my way.

vkaryl

6:03 am on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



*dittos pendanticist in one of the so-abhorred "me-too" posts*

balam

7:17 am on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



If you know "me too" posts are so abhorred, why do you post so many?

Namaste

8:21 am on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

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now we finally know why they have started issuing patches!

First they scare you into constant "security updatess"

Then they tell all pirates that you need to register to receive them.

Brilliant mkt tactic if you ask me!

But they must be damn sure that this won't push people to Linux. Having used Linux myself I agree with MS that Linux is still 2 years away for day to day office & home use. So, this tactic may sacre people into buying XP now and later automatically upgrading to Longhorn at a discount.

But I think it only a v. small percentage of people actually download updates. I know my parents and many friends have no clue about them. So, possibly this move is not worth it incase there is a virus epedemic: The media will have a field day at MS' expense.

RobinC

8:31 am on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I legally own copies of windoze for all my machines - however I don't use them, as I find the idea of activation totally abhorrant especially considering how often I change bits and pieces of hardware in them. The only machine with a "true" copy of windoze is my laptop, and that's because I can't exactly change hardware on an almost weekly basis...

Yet another way they're trying to make money, and the end result will be absolutely no change, just more fud spread around...

Robin (posting in anon mode, so you never saw this ;-P)

incrediBILL

8:34 am on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator incredibill is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Namaste, you need to find smarter friends :)

My 72 year old mother who just got her first computer a couple of years ago now calls ME (had a computer since 1978, but she calls ME now..) to make sure I got the latest Windows update, virus scanning update, etc. "Yessss mommmmm.....". Not to mention my wife, inlaws, relatives and friends sending email around every time a new virus hits, I think I'm just gonna explode some day as I always know about these things before I get their 10-20 emails, sheesh.

However, to the point, if you stole XP you should get NOTHING but jail time IMHO. Just like trying to get the GM Service Center to service a stolen car would probably invite the cops. Theft is theft.

Namaste

9:33 am on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



It can be argued that GM is v. diff from MS. GM has cut prices to the bone makes a normal profit. MS makes supernormal profit and has enjoyed monopoly staus for over a decade.

In a monopoly situation it is very hard to determine who the thief is. Is it the monopolist that is charging supernormal prices, or the consumer? It can be argued that MS' monopoly pricing invites much of the piracy that we see. What happens if MS gives OEM manaufacturers XP at $5? Will there by any piracy. Very low likely. And surely MS can do that, considering XP is now at a fully depreciated stage.

It can also be argued that MS has hurt Linux and other competitors through various tactics (read: SCO suit; locking up fonts, etc). Consumer-Ready-Release of these OS will lead to correction in OS prices.

balam

1:38 pm on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



> "Yessss mommmmm....."

Too funny.

While I run a legal copy of Windows, I'm still on the fence as to whether this is a good thing or not.

Getting a bit hypothetical, what about in six months' time when the next extremely critical core component flaw is found and then exploited by virus writers against a sea of machines that can't/won't get patched? What if the payload does nothing to the machine it's installed in - except maybe scan Outlook for addresses to further spread itself - but turn it into a zombie for a DDOS attack?

I suppose what I'm wondering is, is the piracy so bad that it's worth it to create "a lot" of permanently infectable machines?

Tonearm

9:27 pm on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

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"Microsoft Genuine Advantage"

Does that (along with the rest of this news) mix up a powerful rage in anyone else?

- Grant

pendanticist

10:07 pm on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I suppose what I'm wondering is, is the piracy so bad that it's worth it to create "a lot" of permanently infectable machines?

To get an accurate answer to that one, you would have to ask the hackers and virus writers.

Nothing is perfect and to assume otherwise is folly. Sure MS has marketed a product which causes great consternation with lots of folks. However, does that speak to the apparent legitimatization of hackers and virus writers who have so zealously pursued its vulnerabilities to all our dismays? Not from where I sit.

Take any individual whose product / services has made them multi-billionaires and you will find folks who despise them. Way before the scandals hit the streets, I stopped going to a particular 'lettered-Mart' simply because I was seeing more-and-more of her stuff ( might too warm fuzzy for me ) and less-and-less of what I was used to purchasing there. We all retaliate in different ways.

Register, register, and register. We see it everywhere on almost any software that is worthwhile.

No matter what preventative measures you take, someone will find a way around your defenses.

Bottom line?

MS has as much right to make this denial as any automobile manufacturer would should a copied vehicle drive into a factory authorized service center expecting recalled repairs be made. Now, if this analogy sounds too far fetched for you, then you need to do a search for 'counterfeit products [google.com]' and see what Asian country comes up the most. Yes Virginia, they counterfeit cars too. :)

bakedjake

10:27 pm on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator bakedjake is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



MS makes supernormal profit and has enjoyed monopoly staus for over a decade.

Not the point. If you use pirated software, you're not entitled to updates. Period.

The great thing about this (and Microsoft knows this) is that we're about six months away from ISPs blocking people with infected computers from accessing the Internet, because upstreams are starting to get more strict.

Tonearm

10:38 pm on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

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The point:

Unregistered software does not equal pirated software.

- Grant

bakedjake

10:44 pm on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator bakedjake is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Unregistered software does not equal pirated software.

And that's fine. But you have to register to use 43,000 other websites.

You have to register to receive any other warranty service.

Why are you making Microsoft a special case?

If a company is providing you with a free repair service, IMHO, they have a right to ask you for information to use it. And you have a right to give them that information, or not.

Tonearm

11:07 pm on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Hi Jake,

The difference between registering to become the user of a website and registering to become the user of an operating system is the low-level access and control the OS has over your computer. If you're into privacy (i.e. not being spied on), you can leave whatever website you've registered for and they will no longer be recording your every move. If you want privacy from a registered operating system, you need to turn off your computer.

- Grant

Fairla

11:27 pm on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Sorry for this fairly clueless question:

I've got a Dell computer that came with Windows installed. How will Microsoft detect that my software is legal? Are they going to require me to dig out my Dell documentation and register with Microsoft before I can download patches?

Because I'm not likely to do that. And I do think it will push people toward Linux.

pendanticist

11:30 pm on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Dell has a licensing agreement with MS which includes the OEM numbers read by the website when you click on Check for Updates. The site verifies those numbers.

They should also be somewhere on the outside of your case.

You will certainly need the alpha-numeric code to plug in when you register your system. Then again, I always do that right away.

[edited by: pendanticist at 11:35 pm (utc) on Jan. 27, 2005]

bakedjake

11:34 pm on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator bakedjake is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Yep pendanticist is right.

All OEM computers (with legit software licenses) are registered from the factory. You go through the process when you first turn on your computer.

albert

11:50 pm on Jan 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Registered or not .. for me it's another point:

>any automobile manufacturer<

Would you like to drive some vulnerable car like M$ OS? What to pay for that early beta stuff?

bakedjake

12:03 am on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator bakedjake is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Would you like to drive some vulnerable car like M$ OS?

You mean like the automobile I own that's had three recalls?

Personally, I'd rather run a buggy OS behind a firewall that I can control well before I'd like to run a car with a brake line that can fall off, or an exploding Pinto.

[edited by: bakedjake at 12:05 am (utc) on Jan. 28, 2005]

security56

12:04 am on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Umm Didn't Microsoft Try this before with SP1 And Even before SP1 was available The hackers already had a crack for it :)

msr986

12:08 am on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

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From the article:

But users who have pirated copies of Windows will be able to continue to get security fixes if they sign up to automatically receive security updates.

So you see, even the pirates can get updates :)

pendanticist

12:19 am on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

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The new authentication system, announced Tuesday and due to arrive by midyear, will still allow people with pirated copies of Windows to obtain security fixes, but their options will be limited.

Emphasis added by me.

Also, what better way to identify your problem areas than to 'bring them to the fold', not necessarily 'into' it.

Robert Charlton

12:33 am on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator robert_charlton is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



You have to register to receive any other warranty service.

You generally don't have to give them information, though, that you'd only give to your bank.

As I remember, when I went to register my legal copy of XP, they tried to hook me into a Passport account and asked for information that, at the time, I thought wasn't their business to know. Clearly, I'll have to reconsider this now.

But let's not think that this is just registering for a warranty. MS does have a larger agenda.

Though I don't like Microsoft's pricing or their operating system, and I resent that I'm currently dependent upon it, I'm at the same time sympathetic to the piracy issue.

Tonearm

1:30 am on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



But let's not think that this is just registering for a warranty. MS does have a larger agenda.

Exactly.

- Grant

pendanticist

1:44 am on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



This one. The last two posts was where my mind was going. You know, continuity?

But let's not think that this is just registering for a warranty. MS does have a larger agenda.

Maybe Robert Charlton and Tonearm can elaborate seperately how they define the phrase?

[edited by: pendanticist at 2:02 am (utc) on Jan. 28, 2005]

Tonearm

1:49 am on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Which phrase? Warranty?

- Grant

vkaryl

2:28 am on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



.... does have a larger agenda.... is what I think pendanticist means.

saoi_jp

3:19 am on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



People with pirated copies should get pirated updates.

walkman

3:28 am on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)



how much profit MSFT makes, it isn't any of our business. If you don't like them, don't buy their product. As far as the updates, why should they offer free updates to people who stole from them to begin with?
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