Microsoft Looking to Tighten Up Windows 8 Activation Requirements

Microsoft’s activation service has always been somewhat controversial since its debut in Windows XP, but has turned out to be a necessary evil. The process started out being very forgiving, and to be fair, we have yet to hear of a single legitimate customer being turned away. Even when Microsoft was within its rights to deny activation as a result of terms in the EULA, a simple phone call was often all it took to resolve the dispute. Pirates have been taking advantage of Microsoft’s generous nature for years now, and new reports are suggesting they are looking to close down a few of the loop holes with Windows 8.

Read more at:
Maximum PC | Microsoft Looking to Tighten Up Windows 8 Activation Requirements
 

jimbo45

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Hi there

This just Wont' fly -- at least in Europe

What right does any O/S have of updating your BIOS.
I could boot on Monday say with W8 and on Tuesday with a version of Linux.

The O/S concerned has rights to ensure it's not being pirated etc -- but updating a computers BIOS --- no way jose

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Mexxi

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jimbo45, you're misinterpreting the information. MS doesn't update the BIOS, the necessary information is added by the OEM before the computer ships.

Ever since Vista came out, OEMs could register with MS to allow automatic activation without the user having to be online. The end user would just start the computer and be able to use it without restrictions like in good old Win 9x days. Pirates abused this by emulating dumped OEM-bioses to get Vista and 7 to boot up fully activated. All you need is a proper patcher that installs such a BIOS-emu and you're good to go. Since every BIOS uses the same serial, this is a relatively surefire way to pirate the OS and save yourself from updates that detect other forms of activation circumvention.

What MS wants, is to change the serial in every OEM-BIOS which is already present to be a unique one. All OEMs that registered with MS for this procedure have shipped their BIOSes with proper serials for years. This does not affect the end user, whether you plan to boot Windows, Linux or Mac OS... The serial is only queried when Vista/7/8 boots up, other operating systems ignore it.

People who assemble their own PCs aren't affected either, since they don't qualify for the automatic OEM activation procedure and thus have to rely on the other known activation methods.
 

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jimbo45

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I have no problem with Ms doing whatever it likes to protect its "Intellectual copyrights" -- but the thought of it actually being able to update the BIOS in my computer is just horrific.

I don't regard Ms as "The Evil empire" and I know I can't do anything about corporations gathering all sorts of statistics -- but writing to MY OWN computer's BIOS is where I would draw the line.

Ms might want to change serial nr's or whatever - fine but do that by interrogating the INSTALLED software base.

No way on this planet do I need or want companies to be able to WRITE TO MY BIOS- I wouldn't even want them to be able to READ it either unless it was done via an OK API system.

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Lebon14

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Hi there
I have no problem with Ms doing whatever it likes to protect its "Intellectual copyrights" -- but the thought of it actually being able to update the BIOS in my computer is just horrific.

I don't regard Ms as "The Evil empire" and I know I can't do anything about corporations gathering all sorts of statistics -- but writing to MY OWN computer's BIOS is where I would draw the line.

Ms might want to change serial nr's or whatever - fine but do that by interrogating the INSTALLED software base.

No way on this planet do I need or want companies to be able to WRITE TO MY BIOS- I wouldn't even want them to be able to READ it either unless it was done via an OK API system.

Cheers
jimbo

Again, you are reading it wrong. If you build your own computer and buy Windows 8, it has it's own serial key that you enter during install. Then, you activate it like you always did and Microsoft will not change/read/write your BIOS. They won't.

What they want to do is, pre-built computer wise, to require OEM that key that you get with the DVD within the BIOS. Then, if Windows 8 detects that in the BIOS, it will simply detect it's a legit OEM key and won't need further activation if a need to re-install is needed (I think).

Don't be paranoid.
 

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Brink

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Yes Jimbo, please read the whole article and ask questions if needed before just flying off the handle half cocked. ;)
 

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alphanumeric

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Yeah, Windows 7 uses OA2.2 and activates offline against a SLIC table in the BIOS for OEM-SLP installs. Windows 8 will use OA3.0 (OEM Activation 3.0) for OEM-SLP installs and will activate online. The BIOS will still have a SLIC table but it will now be unique to each PC. You can't cheat by copying a SLIC table from one PC and adding it to the BIOS on another PC.
 

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Coke Robot

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Sounds more stringent, and sounds like it should had been done A LOOOOONG time ago. Microsoft actually has been real generous with pirated copies and pirates. They even allowed pirated copies to still receive updates with 7 until and update flagged down all the pirated copies. I've heard that it's still easy to pirate 7, but doesn't sound at all easy with 8. Good work.
 

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Sounds more stringent, and sounds like it should had been done A LOOOOONG time ago. Microsoft actually has been real generous with pirated copies and pirates. They even allowed pirated copies to still receive updates with 7 until and update flagged down all the pirated copies. I've heard that it's still easy to pirate 7, but doesn't sound at all easy with 8. Good work.

The somewhat easy piratability of Windows is one reason for its popularity. Try before you buy. The "generosity" of MS wrt piraccy has simply been marketing.
 

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More than marketing.

It is the reason Windows is the most widely used.

Interesting strategic decision.

Time will tell if it is the right one.
 

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alphanumeric

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Sounds more stringent, and sounds like it should had been done A LOOOOONG time ago. Microsoft actually has been real generous with pirated copies and pirates. They even allowed pirated copies to still receive updates with 7 until and update flagged down all the pirated copies. I've heard that it's still easy to pirate 7, but doesn't sound at all easy with 8. Good work.

One way to do it was to add an OEM SLIC table to your BIOS and then USE the matching OEM Branded install media to do the install. I personally think that that is one of the reasons why you don't get OEM Branded Install media with a new PC anymore. It sounds like OA3.0 will detect that kind of mod.
 

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lehnerus2000

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Software can already rewrite your BIOS from inside the OS anyway.

MB BIOS updaters can be run from inside Windows.
I've used them and they work.

The latest Blackhat conference had a malware POC that could install itself in peripheral firmware.
It could rewrite the machine's BIOS whenever it "felt" like it.
 

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Sounds more stringent, and sounds like it should had been done A LOOOOONG time ago. Microsoft actually has been real generous with pirated copies and pirates. They even allowed pirated copies to still receive updates with 7 until and update flagged down all the pirated copies. I've heard that it's still easy to pirate 7, but doesn't sound at all easy with 8. Good work.
 

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Coke Robot

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Sounds more stringent, and sounds like it should had been done A LOOOOONG time ago. Microsoft actually has been real generous with pirated copies and pirates. They even allowed pirated copies to still receive updates with 7 until and update flagged down all the pirated copies. I've heard that it's still easy to pirate 7, but doesn't sound at all easy with 8. Good work.
Snap son!
 

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This has been the most exciting part.. The RTM leaking and getting it activated. I was very active on sevenforums (same username) when all the windows 7 leaks happened. That was fun. I found the whole windows 8 DP/CP/RP extremely boring and have only just installed 8 again in a dual boot setup. Microsoft say they will increase security but as we all know from the past, everything they ever make has been cracked. I will be honest though, I doubt I will buy or even use 8 unless I get a touch device, but I do prefer the RTM to the previous builds.
 

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This has been the most exciting part.. The RTM leaking and getting it activated.
SO, you are saying that pirating of the OS and getting it to work without having to pay for it is the most exciting part?

Microsoft say they will increase security but as we all know from the past, everything they ever make has been cracked.
Yeah, and because people crack it, even when it's going to be available for $40, means that MS keeps putting in measures to make life miserable for the rest of us who do pay for our software. Jeezus people, if you don't think Windows is worth $40, why pirate it? Use something else that is worth it to you.
 

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So what does this mean for people who have the Windows 8 Enterprise x64 version and they haven't installed it? You can install it, but will be nagged to activate constantly?
 

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Legimate Installs

Yeah, and because people crack it, even when it's going to be available for $40, means that MS keeps putting in measures to make life miserable for the rest of us who do pay for our software. Jeezus people, if you don't think Windows is worth $40, why pirate it? Use something else that is worth it to you.
It's $40 for people who have an existing legitimate Windows installations.

I haven't heard anything definitive about what everyone else is going to have pay to get it.

Will there even be boxed versions for the build-your-own-PC user?
 

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^ Most people do have previous installs on their computer, so that won't be too much of a problem.

I too haven't heard of a price yet for the home hobbyist builders. I've heard they are expected to purchase the "systems builder edition", which to me sounds like OEM and then technically you cannot move it to another computer. As a home hobbyist, I might instead really want to invest in a "retail" like copy that can be moved.

I've been extremely disappointed in Microsoft for not getting this information out to the public. They just keep trickling little bits here and there, but don't want to commit to anything. it's really quite annoying.
 

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SO, you are saying that pirating of the OS and getting it to work without having to pay for it is the most exciting part?

You can hardly pirate something that has not been released or is impossible to buy. I will also never be using it as my main OS and more than likely uninstall after I have finished playing, just as I did with the previous builds, and if I do use it (unlikely) I will pay for it. But yes I find it exciting (not so much with windows 8) but I installed every single leak of windows 7 right up to the RTM and activated any copy possible, just like many others did on sevenforums. It does not make me a pirate. I sent a lot of feedback when testing the win7 leaks also.
 

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