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back to article Microsoft struggles to rid US shores of pesky pirates

Microsoft yesterday confirmed that it has filed 21 civil lawsuits for software piracy in US federal courts against resellers in 14 states. The tech multinational has slung its latest round of sue balls at resellers, claiming they have used a crafty technique that it likes to refer to as “hard-disk loading”. It said that the …


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Of course...

if they put this much effort into producing a bug-free product, and sold it at a reasonable price, this problem would heal itself.


There is one Market: Earth

Give the same price to everyone on the planet and your won't have piracy problems: why some people are able to get Windows and office for less then 5$ USD while i have to pay 100's here?

Microsoft (and International crime syndicate: MPAA/RIAA) should be forced to sell they disk the same price everywhere: If selling a disk under 5$ work to curb piracy in some part of the world... Why not not in America?

Those computer shop did not sell illegal/bootled/pirate copy of windows. they just just found a better supplier of GENUINE microsoft software.


..and if you get a recycled computer?

I was given a not-so-old Dell system that is now complaining that its copy of Windows is not genuine. Its got one of those license stickers on it but I suspect that what's happened is that the recycler just reloaded the disk with a generic image because they needed to remove the original data from that disk.

So what's a person to do? You can't buy 'genuine Windows' because now you're supposed to buy Vista which just plain won't run on this hardware. You could probably put Win2K on it (no hassles with "WGA"). Anyway this thing's supposed to have Windows on it; Dell paid the tax when they first sold it so you shouldn't have to keep buying it (but in Microsoft's twisted corporate world, yes you should....).

The answer is probably Linux. There's nothing that system is intended to do that absolutely has to have Windows.

And no, I'm not going to keep throwing away perfectly good computers. These are newer systems, the 'book sized' ones, not superfast, but then they're not for games.

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Agreed! Microsoft should not be able to complain if people are importing and reselling software. Maybe they can't; the companies that got sued for this should lawyer up and they could perhaps get the case dropped (plus Microsoft can pay legal fees.)

As for the others: Naughty naughty. You really should just put Ubuntu or something on those systems; an automated install takes under 20 minutes, and with a network install you don't even need to pop in a CD. If you used ghost or something to image them it'd take even less time (but, the 20 minute install does a nice burn-in test.)

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Gates Halo

RE: Martin Usher

Actually if you have a COA sticker then your OK... you pay for that shiny sticker not the disk!

All you have to do is find an OEM copy of windows (Home/Pro) and reinstall using the key on the PC.

Alternitivly if you contact dell they will supply the original restore disk for the PC it normally only costs a few £ more than postage

Or finally, as long as the install that is on the machine is the correct version of windows (ie Home OEM) you can just reset the product key on the machine and re-enter the one on your COA... MS have a tool for doing this.

Or (finally finally?)

If its the right version ( oem) and wont activate... Dont just do it online... phone the free number, try to activate, if it fails speak to some one, 9 times out of 10 the questions stop at "How many PCs is this installed on?" (as long as you answer 1!!

I resell used PCs and have to go through variations on the above at least once a week with no problems.

MS are great as long as your legal.

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Pandora´s dDelight ......... Men who Listen.

`Those computer shop did not sell illegal/bootled/pirate copy of windows. they just just found a better supplier of GENUINE microsoft software.`

That makes Microsoft Open Basic Source. They, of course, are then Free to Utilize all their Benefits with the Benevolence of Gracious HindSight. A Gift which goes Hand in Hand with PreCogniscents.

Give him a Push Stroke Nudge, Melinda, Michelle XXXXPects.

Pandora´s Dilemma is what to Interest Listeners with ..... so that they will never ever stay away and will always come back for More...... because IT is so Good.

Read a man´s Mind and you will know his every Thought for Shared Action. Share such Thoughts and you can lead a man´s Mind with your Actions ...... HyperRadioProActivity


RE:David Barrett

Well said David. Both concise and accurate. The main problem is most people who complain simply aren't legal. MS has a right to protect their product, their bottom line, their legal customers, and their stock holders. That's just the way it works. No brag; just fact.


@Pandora´s dDelight ......... Men who Listen.

I agree with aManFromMars. Microsoft piggybacked on piracy on their rise to ubiquity and now that they're as close to a monopoly they can get, they feel that they can squeeze people all they want. And the sad thing is, people are now trapped: they're "addicted" to Microsoft products because that's what they're familiar with and they refuse change because they've reached an age where change is uncomfortable to them (Scott Adams' God Debris details this in it's foreword), but they still want it at a reasonable price, which Microsoft isn't offering them at. So, they do the only thing they can do.

Damn, my mind is totally gone alright. Suddenly I can understand aManFromMars clearly -.-



I remember as a young un' getting my first PC (a 386 sx33) in 1992, the days before Dell, PC World and Tesco, when most people would hunt down an independent shop to get a bew system build to their spec, at eye watering prices compared to today. It was also a time before torrents, so after a quick phone call, a treasure trove of apps and games had 'fallen' on to the hard drive to fill almost half of the 80mb HDD - ahhh memories!


There are other ways

The truth is that in many instances, a linux distribution will suffice! That's the plain unadulterated truth. I don't want to throw Ubuntu back at you but it's a very valid distro, stable, offering all the essential tools to surf the net, edit "Word" documents, spreadsheets and even presentations. If you do games like I do, you're not going to install Vista, especially if you happen to have a bevy of games that worked just fine on XP and which for some unexplainable reason wont function (not even install) on Vista. So the future, for those who don't want to fork out cash for what is grossly overpriced software, could be a mix of Linux and a games there's your alternative to all this rhetoric...just flush MS and head for Linux it's open source, it's free, it's getting increasingly user friendly...and did I say it's free?!


All that complaining - Bah!

“This software is a tad flaky and over priced so I’ll use it but I’ll not pay for it”. Puh-lease - Who’re you kidding? You’re stealing – fin.

If anything has highlighted the natural (and wide) avaricious streak running through the human race it has to be the (personal) computer. Something interesting there, ahhh..., I want it for nothing so I’ll just steal it.

Reducing the price will absolutely NOT eliminate piracy. At best it may reduce it by a few meagre points. Sell MS Office for $5.00 and someone will still want it for nothing, or steal it and sell it for $1.50. Anyone using the price/quality rational is either walking around in blinkers & ear plugs, lives in an igloo at the North Pole or is trying to rationalise their own thievery. Microsoft create software, and in spite of any issues one may have as to the marketing/quality of the product (I have many), they’re entitled to all of the profit; this applies to any software vendor. You don’t like, you don’t have to buy.


@ all those who claim Microsoft should reduce prices..

You think that people will not pirate software if Microsoft (or any company) reduce their prices? Guess what.. You are wrong. It does not work that way.

People want stuff for free. Period.

Look at the that Radiohead album. RH asked that people pay something, but paid whatever the album was worth. People still distributed pirate copies.


@ Stuart Castle

I downloaded Radiohead's album by bittorrent and therefore paid what I thought it was worth.

Gather what ye may from that.


No worries here

I have never paid for a Microsoft product. I own an Apple or something.


Windows is now the exception for most compuing tasks

Linux is great for general purpose computing but windows(with associated products) still has the edge on games video and photos. I run both but not Vista. Thing that irks is all the anti piracy crap inconveniences the legal customer not the pirates. Linux is my forward path and I'm willing to pay a reasonable sum for something that meets my needs,


It still gripes me I can't buy a laptop/computer without an OS

We've been forced into the fact that, unless we assemble it ourselves, we HAVE to pay for some operating system already installed on a computer we buy.

I can get and install whatever operating system I want, assuming driver support. Forget the legalities for the moment, I have several discs laying around from old purchases, Win95a all the way up. Lately, however, I've been playing with others such as Ubuntu and Fedora.

If I'm using those then I most certainly should not be forced to pay for something I don't want. I've tried ordering a single system and multiple systems from dell and gateway in the past without an OS but couldn't so I ended up assembling them myself.

It still galls me that with most laptop suppliers I have to pay Microsoft whether I use their product or whether I throw their os in the trash.

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