Microsoft is making it harder and harder for pirates to use its software. Windows Vista will take this a step further.
A black-letter day for pirates everywhere: Windows Vista will change Microsoft's corporate Volume Licensing (VLK) system to reduce the occurance of unpurchased copies and leaked codes.
The VLK is a system that has been loved by both enterprise level IT professionals and home-brew crackers ever since Windows started prompting for one with Windows 95. The VLK system allowed a company to use one code for as many installs as necessary, by buying the one code as opposed to a particular number of copies.
This won't feel
like a huge difference to many people who are used to Windows Server 2003's connection limits, or particularly XP users who deal with the Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) authorization service. But there is a new, vital difference: Vista will make it a point to 'phone home' to MS servers at random times to verify the valitidy of the install. For Vista Server, the current rumour is every 30 days; the formal amount is unknown for Vista Client licenses.
Thus far, Microsoft has been very sketchy about the details, and understandably so: when Windows XP was released, there was already a corporate keygen available a few days prior
which disabled the 'Activate Windows' requirement.
You can read more over at Ars Technica
The change of the VLK brings a whole new fight to crackers everywhere, who previously had to deal with blacklists and invalidated keys as opposed to a pre-emptive removal of their holy grail. But will it be enough to even make a dent in the widespread piracy of the next Windows OS?
Let us know your thoughts in our forums
. Once we validate your key, of course.