Microsoft tool to delete Win 98 ID numbers

Microsoft will make available within a week a free software tool that can be used to delete an identifying number from users' hard drives that was generated when they registered Windows 98.

Earlier this month, Microsoft promised to modify future releases of its Windows 98 Registration Wizard so that it would not include the feature, which sends a hardware serial number to a Microsoft server. The company also promised to offer a free utility to current users who want to delete the feature.

The tool will be available on Microsoft's Web site, said Claudia Husemann, a company spokeswoman.

Microsoft has already fixed a feature in its Office 97 software that generated an identification number in documents, said John Duncan, a Microsoft Office 97 product manager. Software can be downloaded from Microsoft's Web site that removes the user identification number in Office 97. The software was posted on the Internet March 12, Duncan said.

"We want to move very quickly and address the privacy concerns of customers," Duncan said.

But Microsoft's actions have not mollified critics.

James Catlett, president of Junkbusters, a New Jersey consumer advocacy group, continued his call for a US Federal Trade Commission investigation of Microsoft's methods of collecting information on customers. He also called for an outside audit of company practices.

"We need to make sure they really have cleaned up these practices," Catlett said.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jack McCarthy

PC World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?