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Windows XP Professional VLK OEM? RRS feed

  • Question

  • Would a copy of Windows XP Professional with a VLK ever be packaged as an OEM version?  I purchased an OEM copy on EBay (Yes I know stupid).  This copy passed WGA.  I had other copies that failed.  When I called the WGA team I was told that the bad copies were bad.  I decided to check on the key that passed WGA.  It turned out that the key was a VLK.  The packaging came with a COA Key, CD and manual.  The CD said "For distribution with a new PC only.  The COA and packaging claimed to be OEM.  Would a VLK be packaged this way?  The seller claims that he purchased the software from a reseller that got them from a business that went bankrupt.  From what I have researched, the packaging, COA, CD and the VKL do not all go together.  I wanted to make sure I had my facts together before continuing.  Any help would be appreciated.  Thank you!
    Friday, July 17, 2009 4:34 PM

Answers

  • Hello Aqua4477,

    You are describing one of the more common ways that high-quality counterfeit software is distributed.  The licensing kit mimics the OEM shrink-wrapped flat package.  The Certificate of Authenticity (CoA) and CD look close enough to the genuine ones to pass a cursory glance.  The CD, however, puts down a Volume Licensing installation of XP Pro.  The Product Key that actually gets installed may or may not match the one on the CoA.

    Please visit www.howtotell.com to get info on what to look at very closely to further evaluate your materials.

    A CD whose label says "For distribution with a new PC only" but whose setupp.ini file in the \i386 folder does not have the letters OEM as the last characters in the "Pid=" value in the second section of the file is a counterfeit CD.

    If the seller will not refund your money, please file a piracy report and use the WGA messaging to learn how to send your materials to Microsoft for possible free replacement if deemed "high-quality counterfeits."
    For great advice on all topics XP, visit http://www.annoyances.org/exec/forum/winxp
    Friday, July 17, 2009 5:16 PM
  • Hello Aqua4477,


      Correct, No (legitimate) VLk Key would come on a computer preinstalled. You buy the computers, then buy the Volume License Agreement which is a Contract that stipulates that you are allows to use that VLK key on XXX number of computers. 

      It's been a couple of years since I worked in that Dept, but as I remember it, the purchasing agent (for the orginization that bought the Volume Licensing Agreement) is given the URL to the Microsoft site that the agent can enter their Licensing Agreement information and a list of all the VLK keys, that the orginization owns, would be displayed. It's possible that they could get a hard copy with the VLK key on it, but if they did, it would probably come on their Purchase Order receipt.

    Thank you,
    Darin MS
    Friday, July 17, 2009 6:57 PM
  • Hello Aqua4477,

    "Let me rephrase my question:  If I bought an OEM copy (system builder) of XP Professional for a new system I was building and the COA had a key that was a VL then I did in fact purchas a counterfeit copy of XP?  I believe the answer is yes and wanted to confirm that."

    Yes, the CoA would be counterfeit because that is the only way a VLK could get onto an OEM CoA, because it is a counterfeit CoA.


    "In 100% of the cases an OEM copy that had a COA key that was VL would be counterfeit because there is no prior full license on the PC (it is a newly built PC) and a VL cannot be used as an initial install license.  So an OEM cannot be packaged as a VL.  OEM and VLK are mutually exclusive and the COA would have to be fake or modified?"

    Don't confuse the abstract concept of noncompliance with the terms of a Volume License Agreement with physical counterfeiting.  An OEM CoA with a VL Product Key on it has been physically counterfeited.  You can physically install a VLK edition of XP Pro onto a computer---whether or not its a Genuine license depends upon whether the previously installed OS meets the upgrade requirements.    Installing an otherwise genuine VL as the only license on the computer would show on the report as Genuine, because the reporting utility cannot possibly know if that particular computer ever had a previous qualifying OS installed.  But according to the terms of the VL Agreement, it is a misuse of the license and hence is nongenuine.

    In your case, you bought OEM from a supplier but the materials installed VL.  That is physical counterfeiting.


    "You would have to have the OEM installed first and the OEM key would be afixed to the PC.  Then the VL would be added as an upgrade.  The key afixed to the PC would still register as an OEM but the PC would then have a new key provided by the VL.  In the end, the VL key would never be afixed to the side of the PC?"

    Yes, that it correct.

    "Sorry for the confusion, I wanted to make sure I understood this completely."

    Microsoft software licensing can be confusing once Volume Licensing comes into the picture! :-)

    Thank you for your time and patience."

    You're welcome!


    For great advice on all topics XP, visit http://www.annoyances.org/exec/forum/winxp
    Friday, July 17, 2009 6:59 PM

All replies

  • Hello Aqua4477,

    You are describing one of the more common ways that high-quality counterfeit software is distributed.  The licensing kit mimics the OEM shrink-wrapped flat package.  The Certificate of Authenticity (CoA) and CD look close enough to the genuine ones to pass a cursory glance.  The CD, however, puts down a Volume Licensing installation of XP Pro.  The Product Key that actually gets installed may or may not match the one on the CoA.

    Please visit www.howtotell.com to get info on what to look at very closely to further evaluate your materials.

    A CD whose label says "For distribution with a new PC only" but whose setupp.ini file in the \i386 folder does not have the letters OEM as the last characters in the "Pid=" value in the second section of the file is a counterfeit CD.

    If the seller will not refund your money, please file a piracy report and use the WGA messaging to learn how to send your materials to Microsoft for possible free replacement if deemed "high-quality counterfeits."
    For great advice on all topics XP, visit http://www.annoyances.org/exec/forum/winxp
    Friday, July 17, 2009 5:16 PM
  • Thanks for the response and the link. 

    So, there would not be a COA for a VKL?  I assume the company would have a COA for the VKL and there would not be a COA for every installation that used the VKL?

    I was able to get a refund on all but 3 of the 8 copies I bought.  The other 5 I already returned.  I will try the piracy report for those 3.


    If it looks too good to be true, .............................             It doesn't matter how good their EBay feedback is when it comes to software.
    Friday, July 17, 2009 5:33 PM
  • Hello Aqua4477,

    In a sense there is a CoA for a VLK, because a VL is an Upgrade License ONLY, so there has to be a full license on the PC to start with, that is then upgraded by the VL.

    So a VL consists of a full license CoA (usually OEM but can be retail) plus a Volume Licensing Agreement that authorizes the use of the VL.
    For great advice on all topics XP, visit http://www.annoyances.org/exec/forum/winxp
    Friday, July 17, 2009 5:59 PM
  • Let me rephrase my question:  If I bought an OEM copy (system builder) of XP Professional for a new system I was building and the COA had a key that was a VL then I did in fact purchas a counterfeit copy of XP?  I believe the answer is yes and wanted to confirm that.  In 100% of the cases an OEM copy that had a COA key that was VL would be counterfeit because there is no prior full license on the PC (it is a newly built PC) and a VL cannot be used as an initial install license.  So an OEM cannot be packaged as a VL.  OEM and VLK are mutually exclusive and the COA would have to be fake or modified?

    You would have to have the OEM installed first and the OEM key would be afixed to the PC.  Then the VL would be added as an upgrade.  The key afixed to the PC would still register as an OEM but the PC would then have a new key provided by the VL.  In the end, the VL key would never be afixed to the side of the PC?

    Sorry for the confusion, I wanted to make sure I understood this completely.

    Thank you for your time and patience.

    Friday, July 17, 2009 6:24 PM
  • Hello Aqua4477,


      Correct, No (legitimate) VLk Key would come on a computer preinstalled. You buy the computers, then buy the Volume License Agreement which is a Contract that stipulates that you are allows to use that VLK key on XXX number of computers. 

      It's been a couple of years since I worked in that Dept, but as I remember it, the purchasing agent (for the orginization that bought the Volume Licensing Agreement) is given the URL to the Microsoft site that the agent can enter their Licensing Agreement information and a list of all the VLK keys, that the orginization owns, would be displayed. It's possible that they could get a hard copy with the VLK key on it, but if they did, it would probably come on their Purchase Order receipt.

    Thank you,
    Darin MS
    Friday, July 17, 2009 6:57 PM
  • Hello Aqua4477,

    "Let me rephrase my question:  If I bought an OEM copy (system builder) of XP Professional for a new system I was building and the COA had a key that was a VL then I did in fact purchas a counterfeit copy of XP?  I believe the answer is yes and wanted to confirm that."

    Yes, the CoA would be counterfeit because that is the only way a VLK could get onto an OEM CoA, because it is a counterfeit CoA.


    "In 100% of the cases an OEM copy that had a COA key that was VL would be counterfeit because there is no prior full license on the PC (it is a newly built PC) and a VL cannot be used as an initial install license.  So an OEM cannot be packaged as a VL.  OEM and VLK are mutually exclusive and the COA would have to be fake or modified?"

    Don't confuse the abstract concept of noncompliance with the terms of a Volume License Agreement with physical counterfeiting.  An OEM CoA with a VL Product Key on it has been physically counterfeited.  You can physically install a VLK edition of XP Pro onto a computer---whether or not its a Genuine license depends upon whether the previously installed OS meets the upgrade requirements.    Installing an otherwise genuine VL as the only license on the computer would show on the report as Genuine, because the reporting utility cannot possibly know if that particular computer ever had a previous qualifying OS installed.  But according to the terms of the VL Agreement, it is a misuse of the license and hence is nongenuine.

    In your case, you bought OEM from a supplier but the materials installed VL.  That is physical counterfeiting.


    "You would have to have the OEM installed first and the OEM key would be afixed to the PC.  Then the VL would be added as an upgrade.  The key afixed to the PC would still register as an OEM but the PC would then have a new key provided by the VL.  In the end, the VL key would never be afixed to the side of the PC?"

    Yes, that it correct.

    "Sorry for the confusion, I wanted to make sure I understood this completely."

    Microsoft software licensing can be confusing once Volume Licensing comes into the picture! :-)

    Thank you for your time and patience."

    You're welcome!


    For great advice on all topics XP, visit http://www.annoyances.org/exec/forum/winxp
    Friday, July 17, 2009 6:59 PM