Microsoft to impose harsh crackdown, debilitate PCs with Windows Vista that it believes are pirated

“Microsoft Corp.’s forthcoming Windows Vista will take much harsher steps to curtail piracy than previous versions of its operating system, including crippling the usefulness of computers found to be running unlicensed copies of the new software,” The Associated Press reports.

AP reports, “The world’s largest software maker said Wednesday that people running a version of Windows Vista that it believes is pirated will initially be denied access to some of the most anticipated Vista features. That includes Windows Aero, an improved graphics technology.”

MacDailyNews Take: “Most anticipated?” By whom? They must mean “anticipated” by those who haven’t been using Apple’s vastly superior Mac OS X for over half a decade already.

AP continues, “If a legitimate copy is not bought within 30 days, the system will curtail functionality much further by restricting users to just the Web browser for an hour at a time, said Thomas Lindeman, Microsoft senior product manager. Under that scenario, a person could use the browser to surf the Web, access documents on the hard drive or log onto Web-based e-mail. But the user would not be able to directly open documents from the computer desktop or run other programs such as Outlook e-mail software, Lindeman said.”

“The company also said it has added more sophisticated technology for monitoring whether a system is pirated. For example, the system will be able to perform some piracy checks internally, without contacting Microsoft, Lindeman said,” AP reports. “Microsoft has already instituted tougher piracy checks for Windows XP users who want to get free add-ons such as anti-spyware programs. But until now, the warnings and punitive measures were mainly seen as annoying, rather than debilitating”

“Analyst Roger Kay with Endpoint Technologies Associates noted that Microsoft has the right to curtail illegal distribution of its software. The new piracy measures, he said, ‘seem harsh only in comparison to how lenient it has been.’ Nevertheless, Kay said he expects that the anti-piracy tactics will keep some people from upgrading to Vista from the current operating system, Windows XP. ‘There will be an XP backlash, which is to say people (will) cling to XP in order to avoid this,’ he said,” AP reports.

Full article here.
Apple trusts their customers. Mac OS X Tiger, with all features enabled no less, costs just US$129 (and only $199 for the 5-user “Family Pack”). All Macs come with Mac OS X Tiger pre-installed. Get a Mac.

Related articles:
Infoworld: Microsoft’s WIndows Vista not so revolutionary after all – September 11, 2006
Pirillo: Windows Vista RC1 disappointing, schizophrenic, disordered, inconsistent, and sad – September 07, 2006
Key Microsoft exec exits as clock ticks down on oft-delayed, much pared-down Windows Vista release – September 06, 2006
$399 for Windows Vista Ultimate?! (Hint: Get a Mac) – August 29, 2006
Apple’s Mac OS X Leopard is 64-bit done right, unlike Microsoft’s Windows Vista kludge – August 14, 2006
Microsoft Windows Vista: If you can’t innovate… try to impersonate Apple’s Mac OS X – August 10, 2006
Analyst: Apple’s new Mac OS X Leopard sets new bar, leaves Microsoft’s Vista in the dust – August 08, 2006
Symantec researcher: At this time, there are no file-infecting viruses that can infect Mac OS X – July 13, 2006
Sophos: Apple Mac OS X’s security record unscathed; Windows Vista malware just a matter of time – July 07, 2006
Computerworld: Microsoft Windows Vista a distant second-best to Apple Mac OS X – June 02, 2006
Microsoft’s greatest trick: convincing the public that the Wintel PC platform is open – March 06, 2006
Defending Windows over Mac a sign of mental illness – December 20, 2003


  1. “Most anticipated?” By whom? They must mean “anticipated” by those who haven’t been using Apple’s vastly superior Mac OS X for over half a decade already.”


  2. The company I work for recently purchased a new Dell laptop direct from the source…2 days after it arrived, they started getting the “this is NOT a genuine copy of Windows” messages. This also happened on a couple of the desktop machines around the office. I wonder how many other folks out there have had this message come up even though they did not copy anything and i wonder how many folks will be locked out of their computer after throwing down a bunch of money for one of the many versions of Vista….why the hell are their sooo many versions of vista anyways?

  3. As much as I dislike MSFT, this is a legitimate excercise to protect their ownership rights. It comes down to this, whether you think Vista has value or not, if you don’t pay for it, you can’t use it. There is nothing unreasonable about that.

  4. “Most anticipated?” By whom?

    Ummm, let’s see, BY MILLIONS OS MS FANBOYS? Yeah, MDN, you guys really have your heads buried in the sand sometimes. Go to Fark Tech, read the posts over their in anything regarding Apple, and you’ll get a much better view of how most people still hold Apple.

  5. No just ban users like Alex. MDN take is something I come here to read.

    This is all redundant, it will only take 2 hours once vista is released for crackers to re-enable these features. If someone is going to go out of their way to pirate windows vista, you can be sure they have the means to crack these features as well. This is a move that won’t work. Next story.

  6. Well this is a disaster waiting to happen. Wait until some glitch makes the software shut down even though you have paid for it.

    Windows users will see this as another annoyance to deal with…and they’ll probably take it. “sorry man, my computer was shut down for a week because of a dll conflict” “Me too…oh well”.

    You have to be a real masochist to be a Windows user

  7. cant wait to see how that “enhanced” scurity hoses a legit version of vista. I am sure that there will be a ton of instances where the ignorant slob who opens up that new Dell bachs will be crippled by a draconian mess that will make the machine un-usable. Can you image the calls to support for that!!


    oh wait a dell is unuseable now on XP, sorry about that.


    no sympathies here, i run 5 macs and have one at work, thankfully.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.