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My laptop was stolen, Where or what is the URL to report this license as invalid? RRS feed

  • Question

  • Originally the laptop had windows 98 on it.  I bought win xp pro and installed that on the computer.   I have the original CDs and the box it came in.  Then later the laptop got stolen.  I would like to install my win xp pro elsewhere now.  However I'd also like to some how be able to tag the existing one as stolen.

    Does microsoft have such a feature or url where I can report this copy of XP Pro stolen?  I'd like to see the current holder of my laptop get an invalid license.  If that user gets an invalid license, can Microsoft track that down and possibly lead up to the stolen laptop?  I have a police report as well.

    Thanks

    Sunday, August 2, 2009 5:04 PM

Answers

  • Hello zelmLuga,

    Unfortunately, your post regarding your stolen laptop with XP Pro on it does not really have anything to do with the Vista subforum of the Windows Genuine Advantage forum, so it is off topic.

    However, partly based on visiting this forum for the last three years, I can offer some unoffical info that may be of assistance.

    First, I have read that there are pretty effective software programs that can help to recover a stolen laptop.  One that comes to mind is Lojack for Laptops http://www.absolute.com/products/lojack/features, but even that has some vulnerabilities that may turn a watchdog into a Cujo:  http://blogs.zdnet.com/security/?p=3828.

    Next, having the original CDs and box for your XP Pro means that you have a retail license for XP Pro.  If your retail boxed XP Pro is an upgrade license, you can install it on any computer that already has a qualifying upgradeable installation of Windows on it (such as Windows 98, Me, NT, 2K, or XP Home).  If you have a full retail license you can install XP Pro on any computer regardless of whether it has any OS on it or not.  The way Microsoft's activation servers work is that they assume any new installation of a retail license for XP is the current installation and they will eventually invalidate the old installation, but this process could take some time.

    It is unreasonable to expect Microsoft's activation servers to track down any give installation of XP and locate it for local authorities, in effect acting like Lojack for Laptops.  They would be crazy to even have that ability built into Windows---can you imagine the public outcry over privacy and the lawsuits!  :-)  In fact you do not want to report this copy of XP as stolen to Microsoft, as you would not want them to invalidate it if you plan on using it on another computer.

    So my personal advice is to install your XP Pro on the computer you have in mind, and pretty much stop thinking about the old one---it's long gone.  As long as you have reported it to your local police and filed a claim with your insurance company if you have that kind of coverage, there's nothing else to do.

    Good Luck!
    For great advice on all topics XP, visit http://www.annoyances.org/exec/forum/winxp
    Monday, August 3, 2009 5:04 PM

All replies

  • Hello zelmLuga,

    Unfortunately, your post regarding your stolen laptop with XP Pro on it does not really have anything to do with the Vista subforum of the Windows Genuine Advantage forum, so it is off topic.

    However, partly based on visiting this forum for the last three years, I can offer some unoffical info that may be of assistance.

    First, I have read that there are pretty effective software programs that can help to recover a stolen laptop.  One that comes to mind is Lojack for Laptops http://www.absolute.com/products/lojack/features, but even that has some vulnerabilities that may turn a watchdog into a Cujo:  http://blogs.zdnet.com/security/?p=3828.

    Next, having the original CDs and box for your XP Pro means that you have a retail license for XP Pro.  If your retail boxed XP Pro is an upgrade license, you can install it on any computer that already has a qualifying upgradeable installation of Windows on it (such as Windows 98, Me, NT, 2K, or XP Home).  If you have a full retail license you can install XP Pro on any computer regardless of whether it has any OS on it or not.  The way Microsoft's activation servers work is that they assume any new installation of a retail license for XP is the current installation and they will eventually invalidate the old installation, but this process could take some time.

    It is unreasonable to expect Microsoft's activation servers to track down any give installation of XP and locate it for local authorities, in effect acting like Lojack for Laptops.  They would be crazy to even have that ability built into Windows---can you imagine the public outcry over privacy and the lawsuits!  :-)  In fact you do not want to report this copy of XP as stolen to Microsoft, as you would not want them to invalidate it if you plan on using it on another computer.

    So my personal advice is to install your XP Pro on the computer you have in mind, and pretty much stop thinking about the old one---it's long gone.  As long as you have reported it to your local police and filed a claim with your insurance company if you have that kind of coverage, there's nothing else to do.

    Good Luck!
    For great advice on all topics XP, visit http://www.annoyances.org/exec/forum/winxp
    Monday, August 3, 2009 5:04 PM
  • Thanks for the great reply.  I got to this forum via google and after I posted it I found out it was in the wrong area.  However because I didn't want to double post, I figured someone would eventually either move it to the correct area, or answer the question.

    The windows XP Pro box says "for PCs with Windows 95 or earlier, or PCs without computers"

    I might just write my own locator code for my computers here.  Years ago I had a windows logo certified shrinkwrap product and remember having to go through the hoops to get it, but it was well worth it.

    fwiw, my old laptop was a Sager, if you haven't heard of them they make top of the line laptops.  However it was interesting because I would imagine since the laptop was '2002 it wasn't all that powerful compared to today's standards, and it took some doing to get it to run Windows XP, and it was flakey on that laptop.  So chances are high the person who now has it has probably given up.  (Before it had XP: it was one of my primary development boxes)

    Some people might think I'm stupid, but I always buy the full versions of software so I have legal copies.  Since I used to sell commercial & shareware software, I didn't want to run the risk of cheating and losing the farm so to speak. 
    Wednesday, August 5, 2009 12:35 AM
  • llike zelmluga, i too wish that micorosoft or the CA could track down the laptop that is operating on stolen licensed softwares. It should be the fringe benefits for us users since we paid handsomely for the genuine software.

    if, microsoft could make it as their CSR to protect their customers.
    Sunday, October 11, 2009 11:35 PM