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WGA Annoyance RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • I recently went to download a template from Office online to save some time because I was in a rush to get a document done, of course it prompted me to go through WGA validation.  No problem there, the Office 2007 Beta I'm running is genuine and validated. 

    Up pops the dialog "The following software on your system is not genuine...  Office 2003, Visio 2003". 

    I have several issues with that...

    a) yes Office 2003 was genuine, before the Office 2007 install uninstalled it... likewise Visio is also genuine

    b) what is Microsoft doing validating everything under the sun...  if I'm using Word 2007 validate my Word 2007 or even my Office 2007... don't root around for everything else I have installed on the system

    Long story short, prior to downloading one lousy template I had to open Visio (a program I don't even use anymore) and re-activate it.  I had to actually *reinstall* one of the Office 2003 applications and activate it before the WGA dialog would let me through the validation. 

    That brings up a further point... Microsoft needs to differentiate between "not genuine" and "not activated, not used, who cares".  How about "We have detected that Office 2003 and Visio 2003 have not yet been activated with Microsoft"... certainly a much better "feeling" than a dialog box who's two exit buttons are "resolve later" or "buy a legal copy" (or whatever the exact wording is... it certainly would give a customer an impression of "you're guilty" more than anything else).

    I am a Microsoft reseller, and I fully support efforts to cut down on the amount of software piracy.  The general activation and WGA experience, however, seems to be much more "you're guilty, prove that you're not".... and prove it again tomorrow, and again the next day, and again the day after that, oh you upgraded your computer, so you'd really be prepared to prove it now... oh you had problems upgrading your computer and you had to reinstall your software... now that you're already frustrated with that prepare to spend some time on the phone with someone with a heavy accent exchanging 46 character activation keys. 

    When all goes properly the process is relatively inobtrusive to the user... but in situations where the user is already frustrated the process of trying to get something accomplished the user experience frequently goes from bad to worse (as my example of a simple template download this morning)... and it is that experience that people will remember and pass along when talking with colleagues

    Saturday, September 30, 2006 4:36 PM