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Vista Gets 'Transfer To New Machine Limits' To Combat Piracy



11:50 am on Oct 17, 2006 (gmt 0)

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

Under changes to Microsoft's licensing terms, buyers of retail copies of Vista will only be able to transfer their software to a new machine once. If they want to move their software a second time, they will have to buy a new copy of the operating system.

In the past, those who bought a retail copy of Windows needed to uninstall it from any machine before moving it to another machine but there was no limit to how many times this could be done.

Shanen Boettcher, a general manager in Microsoft's Windows Vista unit, said: "It was something that had been abused from a piracy perspective before. We're just being clear it's one move from machine to machine that you are licensed for."

Vista Gets Transfer To New Machine Limits To Combat Piracy [software.silicon.com]


11:17 am on Oct 19, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member kaled is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

If Microsoft really want to be this paranoid, they should switch to renting the OS instead of selling it.

Set the price of Vista to $10.00 per quarter ($30.00 per year if paid annually). Require activation whenever it expires - simple.

If there is a hardware failure and you're paying quarterly then you're only out $10.00. You take a slightly greater risk if you pay yearly. If you perpetually upgrade, this would be no great additional cost or inconvenience (if you pay quarterly).

Manufacturers like Dell would also like this since they could reduce prices.

So, given that someone at MS is bound to have thought of this and you can be certain Bill & Co. have considered it, why have they not chosen this approach? The answer is very simple, they don't have sufficient confidence in their ability to write the necessary code securely.



5:08 pm on Oct 19, 2006 (gmt 0)

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For 99.9999% of the population this change will be meaningless and have no impact

I beg to differ. I am sure there are more than 300 people who will be impacted. :)

My desktop came pre-installed with Windows

When clients of mine buy computers, they buy 1,000 at a time. Software is not installed. This is crucial as they must enforce various policies, both software based and regulatory ones. The process to reconfigure a machine would take them 30+ minutes, fast imaging them takes only 10.

I know they are not unique in their computer buying habits, which would go back to the impact level...

Adding a component isn't a complete re-install

In Windows XP SP2, and what I have seen Vista RC1, the MSGA sees a hardware change deemed major (such as swap out of graphics, audio, IDE to SCSI, etc.) as a new installation and requires a re-registration.

If Microsoft uses the same verification of machine change, this will happen more often then just for 300 people... ;)

Many of you may not remember [...]DR-DOS
I thought DR-DOS was way better then MS-DOS. As a matter of fact, I used DR-DOS because it was able to do more than MS-DOS, including GEM.

Either way, if the EULA remains or goes it really doesn't matter to me. I will find a way to take advantage of either in a positive way.

A monopoly is not illegal, just because it is a monopoly.

Even if the solution is legal from licensing perspective, this thread is a clear indication how much backlash Microsoft will suffer in the public perception area

As soon as Vista is out, and if this EULA remains, I am investing in open source OS support companies.

[edited by: Tapolyai at 5:08 pm (utc) on Oct. 19, 2006]


6:53 pm on Oct 19, 2006 (gmt 0)

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The link works fine for me in France.


8:29 pm on Oct 19, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Pretty soon I will only be able to play X-Box games I buy on my personal console. :)

Then when my X-box crashes (as it inevitably will) I will be forced to buy all my games over again.


4:07 am on Oct 20, 2006 (gmt 0)

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I feel for these companies concerning piracy, but they need to go after the PIRATES.

I have plenty of legitimate licenses of win2K, and it works just fine for me.

I did the XP license transfer for a friend once - major pain and waste of time. Never again.

I'm not just banging on MS here. I remember one of the tax programs getting major negative feedback from customers a couple of years back.

I've also got some software with this 'sheriff' system. Too many computer upgrades (swap a motherboard, etc.) and it stops working. Then you get to beg for permission to use your software. My time is more valuable than that, so no more purchases/upgrades from companies that use it.

No thanks - I'm not jumping through hoops to be their customer.


5:16 am on Oct 20, 2006 (gmt 0)

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

I thought DR-DOS was way better then MS-DOS. As a matter of fact, I used DR-DOS because it was able to do more than MS-DOS, including GEM

You might've liked it better but it was technically worse, documented features in the OS weren't 100% cross compatible and it had such a small installed base nobody really cared to hunt down the problems as it was easy to say "unsupported".


12:06 pm on Oct 20, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member kaled is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Let's be realistic... MSDOS was utter crap and not even original crap at that. DR-DOS was well respected as far as it went but wasn't significantly better since it was basically a clone of a piece of crap.

I don't know how big its installed base was but, if memory serves me correctly, it was large enough to worry MS since they created a bug deliberately in one of their own programs (can't remember which one) so that it would fail under DR-DOS.

In terms of basic capabilities the Commodore Amiga did everything in 1985 that Windows 95 did ten years later. And it did it with a lot less memory too.

Practically every innovation that ever came out of Microsoft was either a copy of something else or resulted from a corporate takeover.

When Windows 95 was released they made a big deal about it being object orientated. Unfortunately, in their infinite wisdom, they decided to ditch object inheritence. For instance, if you want to create an object based on a standard windows object (a.k.a. "interface") you have to implement every single method rather than just the odd one you want to add or change.

And if you want examples of just how rubbishy the code is below the surface, just look at icon handling (yee gads that's a mess) and then think about all those buffer overrun vulnerabilities that simply would not exist if decent memory management code existed (and was used).

Back to the thread...

I don't have a problem with MS protecting their intellectual property, that's entirely reasonable, but I'm not at all sure about their methods. MS have proven time and time again that they can't write decent code so that means users are going to suffer (just as programmers do all the time).

For my part, I've just been presented with an interesting problem. A neighbour has given me a two-year-old laptop with a dead hard disk. It has the OEM label on the bottom for XP Home but I don't have a CD. I can probably copy a retail CD from a friend but will it validate with an OEM Key - I have no idea. (It's an IBM if anyone feels like mailing an answer to me.)



6:17 am on Oct 22, 2006 (gmt 0)

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"My desktop came pre-installed with Windows, my server came pre-installed with Red Hat Enterprise and I have no intention on touching the OS on either box until I move to the next box, at which time it will again be pre-installed."

You may have no choice. If your desktop system gets corrupted in any of 0000s of possible ways you'll have re-install windows. When your RHE distro comes to an end you'll either have to completely re-install the next distro or risk the near certainty of having your server compromised. Mind you, if you haven't kept the OS updated it's probably compromised already.


11:16 pm on Oct 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

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I haven't bought a PC with pre-installed Windows (other than a Dell laptop) since 2000. Since that time, I have built new machines (or materially upgraded, such as a new mobo) probably a dozen times. That'd be SIX licenses of Vista, or roughly one per year.

Yeah, that's gonna happen.

I was fairly interested in getting Vista, but now I'm looking forward to a new Mac instead. All of my major software works on a Mac (and proponents say it works BETTER on a Mac). For everything else, I'll still have XP.

So, no, I won't be snagged by this "feature"... sooner or later this will be reversed (or rather, they'll re-re-clarify, and tell us what they really, honestly meant), and when it is, I'll give Vista a try. Until that day, there are alternatives that look just fine to me.


3:37 pm on Nov 3, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Reversing a licensing change announced two weeks ago, Microsoft said on Thursday that it will not limit the number of times that retail customers can transfer their Windows Vista license to a different computer.

Microsoft backtracks on Vista transfer limits [news.com.com]


1:58 am on Nov 6, 2006 (gmt 0)

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

The silence here is deafening... ;)

Microsoft listened to all of your complaints about licence transfers for retail versions of Windows. Now the EULA says that a user can reassign a single retail version of Vista as often as they like.

I know it's fun to bash MS when they blunder, but give them credit here too. They are reacting to consumer sentiment in this case and have changed.


11:17 am on Nov 6, 2006 (gmt 0)

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

Having just read your link Bill ..
OK ..so it's good that they changed their minds..

but ..what they were proposing previously was definately totally illegal under European law ..and European consumers ( governments , associations and citizens ) were getting ready to go to court if they tried it ..( and Europe is now a bigger market than the USA )..and I think it highly likely that it was that which put them into reverse gear ..and not reading blogs and talking to PC "modders" ..

Sorry MS ..I cant give out flowers for you belatedly doing the right thing ..after you tried to do the wrong thing ..quite so brazenly ..

[edited by: Leosghost at 11:17 am (utc) on Nov. 6, 2006]

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