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Blocking an activation key RRS feed

  • Question

  • I understand it is possible to block a specific activation key, for example to prevent it being used by pirates.

    I recently purchased a computer which came with a preinstalled OEM installation of Windows XP.  I have removed this, refusing its license agreement, and instead installing a boxed copy of Vista. By the terms of the end user license agreement (EULA) of XP, the manufacturer (Acer) are legally obliged to provide me with a refund for the copy of XP.

    " If you do not agree to the terms of this EULA, you may not use or copy the SOFTWARE, and you should promptly   contact Manufacturer for instructions on  return of the unused product(s) for a refund "

    The manufacturer have demanded proof that I am not using the OEM copy of XP. Would you be able to confirm to them that my OEM XP product key has not been activated, and block it from being used in future?

    Thank you
    Matthew
    Wednesday, September 12, 2007 5:47 PM

Answers

  • Matt,

     

    When did you purchase the Acer computer? Issues with OEM preinstalled software need to be worked through the respective company. Also were you offered an opportunity having your computer installed with Vista?

     

     

    Stephen Holm, MS

    Wednesday, September 12, 2007 6:23 PM
  • Matthickford,

     

    If you closely read the terms of your sale, you will note that the OEM license and the computer are sold as an inseperable set.  If you do not want the OS and want to return it, you also have to return the computer.

     

    In this case the "unused products" would be the XP license and the computer itself.

     

    It would have been simpler for you to just purchase the Acer computer you wanted with Vista already preinstalled.

    Wednesday, September 12, 2007 7:53 PM
  • Dan, the terms of my sale include no such condition. Let me quote you the Windows XP EULA

    Microsoft(R) Windows(R) XP Media Center  Edition 2005
    END-USER LICENSE AGREEMENT FOR MICROSOFT  SOFTWARE
    IMPORTANT-READ CAREFULLY: This End-User  License Agreement ('EULA') is a legal  agreement between you (either an individual   or a single entity) and the manufacturer   ("Manufacturer") of the computer system or   computer system component ('HARDWARE') with   which you acquired the Microsoft software   product(s) identified on the Certificate of   Authenticity ("COA") affixed to the HARDWARE or on the associated product documentation   ('SOFTWARE').

    YOU AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THE TERMS OF THIS EULA BY INSTALLING, COPYING, OR OTHERWISE USING THE SOFTWARE. If you do not agree to the terms of this EULA, you may not use or copy the SOFTWARE, and you should promptly contact Manufacturer for instructions on return of the unused product(s) for a refund

    The license applies to only to Microsoft software, specifically Microsoft(R) Windows(R) XP Media Center  Edition 2005. it is an agreement between me and the manufacturer. The unused product for return is Windows XP OEM, sold for approximately £50 here in the UK.

    I have contacted both Microsoft and my manufacturer. Microsoft confirmed that the manufacturer are obliged to provide me with a refund. On contacting the manufacturer, they explained that they offer a £50 refund for unused copies of Windows XP, but demanded I send in my computer to their service centre. They then explained the service centre incurs a charge of £41, and I would have to pay to post my computer across the country. This is of course, absolutely ludicrous, a policy conceived with utter disregard for its customers, in an unlawful attempt to excuse the company from its legal obligations to them.

    In my reply I politely offered them photographic and video evidence of me removing windows from my computer, and cited cases of more considerate manufacturers providing the refund without qualification.

    Is it not true that that sending the computer to their service centre for them to observe the absence of XP would neither prevent the copy of XP being used on another computer, or being reinstalled at a later time.

    If they do not agree to a more reasonable method, or indeed choose to ignore my correspondance, then I will consider contacting consumer organisations and trading standards, because as a consumer I expect my business with them to be conducted fairly and in accordance with the law.




    Tuesday, September 18, 2007 10:05 PM
  • Matthickford,

     

    I can only relate to you what I have seen here in the USA regarding the typical sales agreements between major computer manufacturers and consumers.  I did not know you were writing from the UK so my response obviously will not apply to your circumstances.

     

    Here, a person purchasing a new computer out of the box is presented with two agreements, one from the manufacturer outlining their terms and one from Microsoft outlining its terms.  All of the agreements I've read tie the computer and the OS together as a unit sold together.  If the consumer wants to return the OS, they can't just return the OS, they have to return the computer, too.

     

    The only comment I can make about your circumstances is that it seems like it would have been more prudent for you to have researched the return policies of the manufacturer whose computer you purchased prior to the actual purchase. 

    It would have been simpler for you to just purchase the Acer computer you wanted with Vista already preinstalled.

    Wednesday, September 19, 2007 3:08 AM

All replies

  • Matt,

     

    When did you purchase the Acer computer? Issues with OEM preinstalled software need to be worked through the respective company. Also were you offered an opportunity having your computer installed with Vista?

     

     

    Stephen Holm, MS

    Wednesday, September 12, 2007 6:23 PM
  • Matthickford,

     

    If you closely read the terms of your sale, you will note that the OEM license and the computer are sold as an inseperable set.  If you do not want the OS and want to return it, you also have to return the computer.

     

    In this case the "unused products" would be the XP license and the computer itself.

     

    It would have been simpler for you to just purchase the Acer computer you wanted with Vista already preinstalled.

    Wednesday, September 12, 2007 7:53 PM
  • Dan, the terms of my sale include no such condition. Let me quote you the Windows XP EULA

    Microsoft(R) Windows(R) XP Media Center  Edition 2005
    END-USER LICENSE AGREEMENT FOR MICROSOFT  SOFTWARE
    IMPORTANT-READ CAREFULLY: This End-User  License Agreement ('EULA') is a legal  agreement between you (either an individual   or a single entity) and the manufacturer   ("Manufacturer") of the computer system or   computer system component ('HARDWARE') with   which you acquired the Microsoft software   product(s) identified on the Certificate of   Authenticity ("COA") affixed to the HARDWARE or on the associated product documentation   ('SOFTWARE').

    YOU AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THE TERMS OF THIS EULA BY INSTALLING, COPYING, OR OTHERWISE USING THE SOFTWARE. If you do not agree to the terms of this EULA, you may not use or copy the SOFTWARE, and you should promptly contact Manufacturer for instructions on return of the unused product(s) for a refund

    The license applies to only to Microsoft software, specifically Microsoft(R) Windows(R) XP Media Center  Edition 2005. it is an agreement between me and the manufacturer. The unused product for return is Windows XP OEM, sold for approximately £50 here in the UK.

    I have contacted both Microsoft and my manufacturer. Microsoft confirmed that the manufacturer are obliged to provide me with a refund. On contacting the manufacturer, they explained that they offer a £50 refund for unused copies of Windows XP, but demanded I send in my computer to their service centre. They then explained the service centre incurs a charge of £41, and I would have to pay to post my computer across the country. This is of course, absolutely ludicrous, a policy conceived with utter disregard for its customers, in an unlawful attempt to excuse the company from its legal obligations to them.

    In my reply I politely offered them photographic and video evidence of me removing windows from my computer, and cited cases of more considerate manufacturers providing the refund without qualification.

    Is it not true that that sending the computer to their service centre for them to observe the absence of XP would neither prevent the copy of XP being used on another computer, or being reinstalled at a later time.

    If they do not agree to a more reasonable method, or indeed choose to ignore my correspondance, then I will consider contacting consumer organisations and trading standards, because as a consumer I expect my business with them to be conducted fairly and in accordance with the law.




    Tuesday, September 18, 2007 10:05 PM
  • Matthickford,

     

    I can only relate to you what I have seen here in the USA regarding the typical sales agreements between major computer manufacturers and consumers.  I did not know you were writing from the UK so my response obviously will not apply to your circumstances.

     

    Here, a person purchasing a new computer out of the box is presented with two agreements, one from the manufacturer outlining their terms and one from Microsoft outlining its terms.  All of the agreements I've read tie the computer and the OS together as a unit sold together.  If the consumer wants to return the OS, they can't just return the OS, they have to return the computer, too.

     

    The only comment I can make about your circumstances is that it seems like it would have been more prudent for you to have researched the return policies of the manufacturer whose computer you purchased prior to the actual purchase. 

    It would have been simpler for you to just purchase the Acer computer you wanted with Vista already preinstalled.

    Wednesday, September 19, 2007 3:08 AM