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Software Bootleg Binge

By dvenzio.jenkins ·
HELLO... MY NAME IS DJ FROM NC... I HAVE BEEN USING MICROSOFT PRODUCTS FOR A
VERY LONG TIME. AND I HAVE BEEN HEARING ABOUT PEOPLE MAKING COPIES OF
SOFTWARES... AND THAT'S NOT RIGHT. I HAVE A FEW QUESTIONS ABOUT THIS MATTER.
(FIRST) WHAT SHOULD HAVE MICROSOFT DONE DIFFERENTLY TO STOP THIS PROBLEM? (TWO)
WHAT IS DISCUSSED RIGHT IN THIS ARTICLE? (THREE) WHAT WENT WRONG WITH THIS,
THAT CAUSED A PERSON TO LEAK OUT THE CODE THAT IS CAPABLE TO ACTIVE KEYS?
THANKS FOR YOUR HELP....


http://www.eweek.com/article2/0,1759,1563941,00.asp

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by TheChas In reply to Software Bootleg Binge

1. Since the days of DOS, people have been copying software.
The main reason is that they don't want to pay for it.

One thing that Microsoft could do, is to lower the price for retail package software.
There is a logic flaw in the fact that you can buy a new PC for $800 US that has software on it that would cost over $500 US if you bought it at retail.

As far as the copying problem itself, Microsoft has pretty much stopped that with the XP versions of Microsoft Products.
Since the installation locks up if you don't activate it, the illegal installations have pretty much stopped.

2. As I read the article, Microsoft did not leak any code.
Some enterprising individual created code that can generate Microsoft Product Keys.
Of course, Microsoft has a list of all the product keys they ever created, and a list of the activated XP and Office keys.
So, if a key either was not on the list of valid keys, or belonged to a key that has been activated it is very easy for Microsoft to deny activation to someone using an illegal key.

What would be a problem would be if some one created a software code that could be used to activate a copy of Microsoft software.

There is a very good article on Microsoft Product Activation posted at www.aumha.org

Chas

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by jschein In reply to Software Bootleg Binge

1. Is this yet again another school project people looking for easy answers once again? It seems so with such "in-depth" questioning that ANY user could answer.

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by macGold In reply to Software Bootleg Binge

Illegal copies are as old as the copyright laws that give the originators of new work the exclusive right to copy and sell that work for a limited number of years. Illegal copies are made of computer software, music, movies, and even books (if you scan or photocopy whole chapters).

In 20 years I've seen everything tried: Software that can only be loaded once. Software that checks for a piece of hardware attached. Software that is tightly restricted. And software that is not restricted.

What Microsoft does now is issue with each disk a physical index-card-sized Certificat-of-Authenticity or COA. The COA is your proof of purchase, and if the sheriff visits your company with a warrant, your company should have a COA for each machine running a Microsoft product. In addition to the COA, there is often a 1.5" by 3" sticker attached to the computer, making the 1:1 match of macine-to-software easier. The new XP technique of authorizing software by requiring legal keys to be registered is a helpful adjunct, but as I understand, it is the possession of a COA in 1:1 correspondence between machines and installations that is the controlling factor.

On 1: One thing not mentioned above is MS pricing, often 5 to 20 times more than their competitors. People feel "justified" in literally stealling the MS products, because they perceive MS illegally extorting from them.

2: I think the introductory comments address that.

3: It is not that MS leaked the formula for creating keys, as somebody was able to conceive a formula that produced keys, but not necessarilly all keys. There are few people who get deep satisfaction in out-thinking the big-guy, or solving the insolvable problem. But, in combination with those masses willing to exploit the solution, you will probably always see a race between those who try to stop illegal copying, and those who practice illegal copying.

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by Albert Franco II In reply to Software Bootleg Binge

Let's be absolutely clear about one thing--Microsoft has historically been the number one benefactor of software piracy. DOS killed the competition in great part because so many "illegally" used it. Microsoft conquered Europe via pirate software and is conquering Asia the same way. By winning the "installed base" battle Microsoft made very hard for a competitor to get a foot hold. Software is probably the only field where market share is virtually 100% of the game. Microsoft has played this fact to their advantage by encouraging and (some would say) facilitating piracy until they had the market locked up and then crying about piracy to raise revenues once the have won.
Make no mistake about it, Microsoft has played the piracy card to its advantage at every step in the game.

As far as activation is concerned, this is a non-issue since versions of the corporate release are numerous and do not require activation. There are stores in my area that install XP corporate illegally as pre?nstalled software, thereby increasing their margin without passing any of the bucks to MS. This may be for some people morally just since MS is a very dishonest organization, however it is the worst kind of piracy--charging money while lying to the customer that they are buying something that they are not receiving.

In my store we use only legal MS software, not because we like it, not because its the right-thing-to-do, not becuase they can fine us. We have legal software because MS charges me 300 Euros per year to have 5 or 10 seats of all of their products. At that price it's cheaper than copies!

We sell computers with legal software because I don't believe in giving away something that I should sell, thereby paying my overhead and hopefully making a profit.

There's no doubt that since MS has virtually zero incremental cost in software, So the prices we pay for the OS is way out of line with reasonable profit. But the US is a free country and commercial extortion is general

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