Windows Vista, Longhorn to get new antipiracy measures

Microsoft will ship both its new operating systems, Vista and Longhorn, with new anti-piracy detection and prevention software, the company said Wednesday.

Microsoft will introduce a new system for fighting software piracy with its upcoming Windows Vista and Windows Longhorn Server operating systems, the company said Wednesday.

Called the Microsoft Software Protection Platform, it's a collection of technologies that aims to do better at detecting pirated versions of Windows, and will also force unauthorized versions of its software into a limited-functionality mode, encouraging users to obtain a legal copy.

People using unlicensed copies of Vista will be blocked from accessing certain features, including a new interface design called Windows Aero, and software for fighting pop-up advertisements called Windows Defender, Microsoft said. The company has already used a reduced functionality mode with Windows XP.

Users with an unlicensed versions of Windows will also see a persistent reminder message in the corner of their screen, reading "This copy of Windows is not genuine."

The new software is bound to come under scrutiny. Microsoft's previous attempt to reduce unauthorized use of its software, Windows Genuine Advantage, was partially rolled back after it was criticized as "spyware" for stealthily installing itself on users' PCs and reporting information back to Microsoft.

Microsoft said the new technologies are necessary to fight software piracy, and said end users can also benefit because they are less likely to be exposed to faulty or compromised software.

End users installing pirated Vista copies, or who don't register their software using a product key within 30 days, will have their OS functionality reduced. The product key is an ID number assigned to customers for each purchase of Windows. The company said it will also be able to track more easily when products are activated with product keys that have been stolen from a business.

Regardless of the authenticity of their Vista copy, all users will have access to Microsoft security updates, the company said.

For businesses that use volume license keys for Vista and Longhorn Server, Microsoft will introduce new, policy-based tools for activating those systems. The new tools, called Microsoft Volume Activation 2.0, won't be linked to Microsoft's software billing systems, the company said.

Windows Vista and Windows Server Longhorn -- the code name for the next version of Microsoft's server software -- will be the first products to ship with the antipiracy technologies, but they'll eventually be used in more of its products.

Around 35 percent of all software installed worldwide in 2005 was pirated or unlicensed, Microsoft said, citing a figure from the Business Software Alliance, an industry group.

More information is at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/features/2006/oct06/10-04SoftwareProtection.mspx.

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.

Steven Schwankert

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

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?