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  1. #1
    katberlin
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    Activation Process Questions

    would like some informed opinions, so I came here!
    (woody's readers are the best, yes?)
    Product Activation bugs me, both from a privacy and a consumer rights point of view. Am I crazy?
    A German group cracked the wpa code, and says it doesn't invade privacy.
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/4/20282.html
    But, it does say that one of the hardware keys in the code is your NIC MAC address - is that not usually unique?
    Even if it doesn't, does it bug anyone else that you have lost the consumer right to put the software on the machine of your choice whenever you want to? (yes, I comply the the legal requirements of one machine at a time - I do not pirate software)
    Do you think office/windows new activation scheme costs us some privacy? some consumer rights?
    If they do, Are the products worth that cost?
    Thanks in advance for thoughtful opinions!

  2. #2
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Activation Process Questions

    You asked for opinions, so here goes. First I want to state some facts as I see them:

    a) Microsoft makes money by selling software, including operating systems and office suites.

    [img]/forums/images/smilies/cool.gif[/img] Software products are easily priated. Pirating has different definitions depending on who you ask.

    c) Microsoft has a right to protect their revenue stream, i.e. software products.

    That said, I don't like product activation. And I don't like it because I am an adult, I abide by the law, and I think the methods of product activation are rather intrusive. The MAC address is indeed unique, and I don't want to send *any* information to the same company that has been discovered collecting data before, and inserting it into documents created by their software. I'm referring to the Windows Update registration and Word document fiascoes, specifically. Both are well documented abuses in my opinion, and were poorly handled to boot.

    I also don't want to deal with another hassle when I upgrade my PC. Granted, it takes some doing to make XP think it's on a different computer, but I upgrade all the time - I have a few hobbies and tinkering with PCs is one of them.

    Last but not least, the XP products have a corporate license, which is a key that tells the product that it's already activated. But that's for big business, where the revenue truly comes from, and again the consumer is left on the short side.

    Are the products worth it? For Office XP, a resounding no. I have had too many little issues with it to say that's it's worth the effort or risk. But Windows XP? If I have to, I will deal with PA but I don't have to like it - Windows XP is incredible. Perhaps instead of product activation, Microsoft should work out some deals with manufacturers on the cost of the hardware that will be erquired to drive this monster OS.
    -Mark

  3. #3
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    Re: Activation Process Questions

    Mark,
    Well said, I to do not like it but I see the need. I have been beta testing Windows XP and have had no problems with the Activation Process on it. I also have installed Office XP on each Windows XP build since Office XP come out. I got my copy of Office XP a week before it hit the retail shelves. I have not had any problems with it either.
    As I see it, yes it is going to be worth the money to up grade from 9x and nt versions to Windows XP. If one is running Windows 2000, I do not see any big advantage except for the "Remote Assistance" which will be great for ALL IT departments.

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

  4. #4
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Activation Process Questions

    Yes, it is an "invasion of privacy." No, the products are not worth that cost.

    I recently bought a new PC and had the choice of having Office 2000 or Office XP installed. I chose Office 2000 because I refuse to have copy protected software installed on any PC I use. I have purchased my last Microsoft product until they hopefully come to their senses. If Win 2000 and Office 2000 get to the point where they no longer meet my needs, then I will look at Linux and Office products that work on it.

    Microsoft's Registration/Activation Wizard punishes the honest users, but will do little or nothing to stop piracy. I will defend Microsoft's right to do something stupid like this, but I will also exercise my right not to buy their products that include this abomination.
    Legare Coleman

  5. #5
    New Lounger
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    Re: Activation Process Questions

    Hi there

    I received a copy of Beta 2 of Windows XP through my MSDN User Group.

    The Product Activation I found didnt care how many machines it had been installed on (unlike the Office XP 30 day demo, where I have had to buy FOUR copies in order to try it out on four different machines - and no, you cannot telephone Microsoft to "move" the software license) and it obviously trawled through the machine and made a note of the machines details, as an anti piracy measure.... that;s why I always activate first and then install software later.

    Aside from that on one test machine, it timed out and would not let me log in till I had registered, which does sorta require that you have a modem or a phone to get the activation code.

    Assume any and all Microsoft software installed on an XP machine will be recorded. Make your choice based on this.

    RC

  6. #6
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Activation Process Questions

    I have already made my choice. No copy protected software on any of my systems!
    Legare Coleman

  7. #7
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    Re: Activation Process Questions

    <hr>Assume any and all Microsoft software installed on an XP machine will be recorded. Make your choice based on this<hr>

    Assume that MS is keeping tabs on the software you own? Sorry - it only looks at hardware and is why the hash can't be reverse engineered to specific pieces of hardware.

  8. #8
    New Lounger
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    Re: Activation Process Questions

    Thanks for the info.

    I bought Office XP pro yesterday.

    Microsoft said that they saw no problem in it being moved from machine to machine for development and testing, I was quite open when I asked them, and I think they accepted my candour about it

  9. #9
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    Re: Activation Process Questions

    Here is a MS page that may help.
    <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.microsoft.com/piracy/basics/xp_activation.asp#10> Microsoft Product Activation</A>

    Available from this page:

    How Activation Works
    Product Activation Fast Facts
    Top 10 myths about Product Activation
    Frequently Asked Questions about Product Activation
    Volume Licensing and Product Activation
    Technical Market Bulletin on Product Activation in Windows XP

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

  10. #10
    New Lounger
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    Re: Activation Process Questions

    Yes, read the article, very helpful. I have now determined which two machines to activate Office XP on, one of course being a laptop. Both installs are activated with no problems.

    Rick

  11. #11
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Activation Process Questions

    I hope they stay activated.
    Legare Coleman

  12. #12
    New Lounger
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    Re: Activation Process Questions

    So far as I know they have. I also have a multi license pack and therefore have to record each use on one license on which machine. This seems to be a good idea.

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