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  • Question

  • Hi.. I have a few questions about the Genuine Advantage Offer.  My OS was considered valid until the most recent updates, now its not.  My questions are:

    1)  If I pay for the valid key kit from Microsoft, and in the process of changing the key, it discovers some files from the original install are corrupt.. it says that it will pop up a message and I will need to reformal when the CD arrives in the mail.  Will my system still be usable until that time or will something be changed during this check that will make it worthless until the reinstall is done?

    2)  Im just curious why the website says that Microsoft isnt gathering personal information on anyone, or any data that can be used to identify the user, but then will require your name and mailing address...seems like the ultimate way to gather information.  

    3)  If I buy an OEM version of the OS from a reputable reseller (like newegg), some of the comments state that the OS is tied to the hardware, like the mobo.  If I replace just one or two components, will I still be required to have to call and sit on hold for hours to reactivate, or does that only occur if its a complete system rebuild?  I normally do a full system rebuild but am hoping that isnt necessary for a while and would only do individual components as necessary.

    Thanks in advance for your help.

    Tuesday, May 2, 2006 4:43 PM

Answers

  •  iluvaxlrose wrote:

     Im getting the same as everyone else now.. that its not a legal version.

    I mean, what is the validation failure message? VLK? Invalid Product Key? Some more information may help us guide whether or not you need to actually purchase a legal CD. (items like "License Store Error" are easily fixed)

     iluvaxlrose wrote:

    I do have some other questions now though, if you dont mind.  When I got my pc, it came with XP Pro on it.  Since that copy is whats causing me problems, could I buy an OEM version of XP Home from a reputable seller, and reformat and install the Home version, and will it pass the authentication? 

    Yes. Assuming it is not a system-builder royalty copy (... long story short, a CD designed for a SPECIFIC computer - which if it is a reputable seller, shouldn't happen).

     iluvaxlrose wrote:

    A friend of mine said that he's reading posts on the net that it still wont work, even though its a clean install with a legal OS.  He says "Im reading on the net that WGA may still object to OEM operating systems not installed on a new computer".  The seller doesnt seem to think that it would matter, as its only installed on one pc and with a fresh install on a reformatted drive, it should be viewed as a 'new computer'.  Any comments?

    See above about Royalty System Builder copies. (CD's specifically made for certain hardware. One example would be ANY Windows XP Media Centre edition, which is hardware specific).

     iluvaxlrose wrote:

    Also, and I think I read this somewhere else but I cant find it now.. is the version of XP that comes with the WGA offer kit a full retail version (ie, it has a COA sticker and is not an OEM?) 

    Yes, full retail copy. Except you get a neato letter from us (saying thanks!)

     iluvaxlrose wrote:

    I also read something about a downgrade feature thats part of the retail version but not an OEM.. and an OEM cannot be reinstalled on a new pc, regardless of whether the initial pc blew up or was trashed or whatever, right? 

    I'm not sure about this. I haven't read anything like this.

     iluvaxlrose wrote:

     Will the XP WGA version allow me to put it on a new pc, or if I replace the mobo, etc and call to reactivate it, will I be able to use the same version/product key?  I guess what I want  clarification on is if Microsoft will treat the WGA version as a full retail with all the benefits of buying retail, or if its more like an OEM version with limitations that might be a factor later on.

    Yes, FULL retail version. You'll get access to IE7, Defender, or any other downloads availible for genuine users.

     iluvaxlrose wrote:

    I know the key change program wont work with this, but just out of curiosity.. I have XP Pro, which I dont really need.  Is it possible to purchase the offer kit for XP Home instead, and just do a full reformat/install when it comes in the mail, or must it be for the same version that you currently have?

    XP Pro and XP Home Cd's are totally different. Yes, using an XP Pro CD Key with XP Home is illegal and breaks the terms of use. I suggest purchasing the full version of the product you intend to use. I understand price-point being a big issue, but Professional edition is worth it. Especially since you won't be allowed to use a Home CD key with Professional edition...

    The offer kit will only allow you to purchase a copy of Windows to upgrade your current version to genuine (i.e. Pro to genuine Pro. Home to genuine Home, ONLY.).

    Thursday, May 4, 2006 12:29 AM

All replies

  • Thank you for your request for informaiton on Genuine Advantage. I trust the below information will provide the answers you are seeking.

    One question I have is why do you think your system was previously considered as valid? If you could further explain this it would be most helpful in determining what may have actually occured.

    1. your system will continue to function without issue until the media arrives and you can re-install clean. I would recommend that you also turn on Automatic Updates until you can do this. This will ensure you are still receiving critical updates and your system is secure.

    2. Could you please prvide me with the Web Site in question so I can definitively address this question

    3. There are a specific number of instances you are allowed when changing hardware on your system without having to activate via telephone. If they have been exceeded already you will have to activate via telephone ot get an override. I am also providing some additional information below concerning MS Product Activation.

     

    http://www.microsoft.com/piracy/activation.mspx

    http://www.microsoft.com/piracy/activation_facts.mspx

    http://www.microsoft.com/piracy/activation_faq.mspx

    http://www.microsoft.com/piracy/activation_how.mspx

    http://www.microsoft.com/piracy/activation_myths.mspx

     

    Tuesday, May 2, 2006 7:13 PM
  • During the first round of authentication, my system was 'passed' and found to be valid.  With the updates installed a week or two ago, it no longer does that and now says its not genuine.  From posts Ive read elsewhere, I think I was giving a serial number from a worksite license or something and now it no longer passes.

    Thank you for clarifying that the system would continue to work.  That is a major factor in deciding if I want to purchase the key kit or just buy the OS elsewhere and start over with that dreaded 'R' (reformat) word.

    The website Im referring to is www.microsoft.com/genuine/downloads/FAQ.  If you're going to send out the CD in the mail, all of the names/addresses of people that have illegal software will be collected, whether its their 'fault' or not.  Just seems odd to state that no personal info will be collected when that clearly isnt the case.  The FAQ states that no action will be taken against persons that purchase the kit but from talking to some coworkers, most would be very resistant to take that chance and it is somewhat unnerving to me as well.

    Thank you for the activation info.  I did locate the page about what hardware components can be changed without reactivated.

    Tuesday, May 2, 2006 7:26 PM
  • iluvaxlrose:

     

    What is the error message you're recieving when you go through the Validation process?

    _________________________

     

    The request for information to ship a CD (whether by Counterfeit report or by WGA Kit purchase) is necessary. How else can we ship media to you, or charge the credit card?

    We have not taken any action, nor will we, against individual users who may be victims of Software Piracy. However, we do use counterfeit reports to try and lock-down on users/companies illegally selling counterfeit Microsoft software to unsuspecting users. We do not use any of this ordering/shipping information other than to ship the media that people order or request. You may be reading way too much into it... Microsoft respects the privacy of all users, especially when it comes to PII (personal identifiable information).

     

    I hope this answers your questions and quells some concerns,

    -Phil Liu

    Tuesday, May 2, 2006 8:39 PM
  •  Im getting the same as everyone else now.. that its not a legal version.

    I do have some other questions now though, if you dont mind.  When I got my pc, it came with XP Pro on it.  Since that copy is whats causing me problems, could I buy an OEM version of XP Home from a reputable seller, and reformat and install the Home version, and will it pass the authentication?  A friend of mine said that he's reading posts on the net that it still wont work, even though its a clean install with a legal OS.  He says "Im reading on the net that WGA may still object to OEM operating systems not installed on a new computer".  The seller doesnt seem to think that it would matter, as its only installed on one pc and with a fresh install on a reformatted drive, it should be viewed as a 'new computer'.  Any comments?

    Also, and I think I read this somewhere else but I cant find it now.. is the version of XP that comes with the WGA offer kit a full retail version (ie, it has a COA sticker and is not an OEM?)  I also read something about a downgrade feature thats part of the retail version but not an OEM.. and an OEM cannot be reinstalled on a new pc, regardless of whether the initial pc blew up or was trashed or whatever, right?  Will the XP WGA version allow me to put it on a new pc, or if I replace the mobo, etc and call to reactivate it, will I be able to use the same version/product key?  I guess what I want  clarification on is if Microsoft will treat the WGA version as a full retail with all the benefits of buying retail, or if its more like an OEM version with limitations that might be a factor later on.

    I know the key change program wont work with this, but just out of curiosity.. I have XP Pro, which I dont really need.  Is it possible to purchase the offer kit for XP Home instead, and just do a full reformat/install when it comes in the mail, or must it be for the same version that you currently have?

     I'd like to get my system back on track but want to be sure I know what Im getting beforehand.  I apologize for all the questions.. Ive spent more hours than I care to admit reading everything I can find about this, and the more I read, the more confused I get.

     

    Wednesday, May 3, 2006 12:48 PM
  •  iluvaxlrose wrote:

     Im getting the same as everyone else now.. that its not a legal version.

    I mean, what is the validation failure message? VLK? Invalid Product Key? Some more information may help us guide whether or not you need to actually purchase a legal CD. (items like "License Store Error" are easily fixed)

     iluvaxlrose wrote:

    I do have some other questions now though, if you dont mind.  When I got my pc, it came with XP Pro on it.  Since that copy is whats causing me problems, could I buy an OEM version of XP Home from a reputable seller, and reformat and install the Home version, and will it pass the authentication? 

    Yes. Assuming it is not a system-builder royalty copy (... long story short, a CD designed for a SPECIFIC computer - which if it is a reputable seller, shouldn't happen).

     iluvaxlrose wrote:

    A friend of mine said that he's reading posts on the net that it still wont work, even though its a clean install with a legal OS.  He says "Im reading on the net that WGA may still object to OEM operating systems not installed on a new computer".  The seller doesnt seem to think that it would matter, as its only installed on one pc and with a fresh install on a reformatted drive, it should be viewed as a 'new computer'.  Any comments?

    See above about Royalty System Builder copies. (CD's specifically made for certain hardware. One example would be ANY Windows XP Media Centre edition, which is hardware specific).

     iluvaxlrose wrote:

    Also, and I think I read this somewhere else but I cant find it now.. is the version of XP that comes with the WGA offer kit a full retail version (ie, it has a COA sticker and is not an OEM?) 

    Yes, full retail copy. Except you get a neato letter from us (saying thanks!)

     iluvaxlrose wrote:

    I also read something about a downgrade feature thats part of the retail version but not an OEM.. and an OEM cannot be reinstalled on a new pc, regardless of whether the initial pc blew up or was trashed or whatever, right? 

    I'm not sure about this. I haven't read anything like this.

     iluvaxlrose wrote:

     Will the XP WGA version allow me to put it on a new pc, or if I replace the mobo, etc and call to reactivate it, will I be able to use the same version/product key?  I guess what I want  clarification on is if Microsoft will treat the WGA version as a full retail with all the benefits of buying retail, or if its more like an OEM version with limitations that might be a factor later on.

    Yes, FULL retail version. You'll get access to IE7, Defender, or any other downloads availible for genuine users.

     iluvaxlrose wrote:

    I know the key change program wont work with this, but just out of curiosity.. I have XP Pro, which I dont really need.  Is it possible to purchase the offer kit for XP Home instead, and just do a full reformat/install when it comes in the mail, or must it be for the same version that you currently have?

    XP Pro and XP Home Cd's are totally different. Yes, using an XP Pro CD Key with XP Home is illegal and breaks the terms of use. I suggest purchasing the full version of the product you intend to use. I understand price-point being a big issue, but Professional edition is worth it. Especially since you won't be allowed to use a Home CD key with Professional edition...

    The offer kit will only allow you to purchase a copy of Windows to upgrade your current version to genuine (i.e. Pro to genuine Pro. Home to genuine Home, ONLY.).

    Thursday, May 4, 2006 12:29 AM
  • Its the one that says 'this version is not genuine.. you may be a victim of counterfeiting yada yada yada'. 

    The OEM questions (downgrade, etc) were found on some Microsoft data pages, that I found by searching the site for OEM activation.  I believe it said that one drawback to OEM products was that they were tied to the motherboard, and if the motherboard were replaced, it constituted a new system, which rendered the OEM invalid as it was only good for use on one system.  Also that retail versions allowed you to 'downgrade' and go back to a previous system, but an OEM did not allow that (why you'd want to is beyond me anyway)

    I really appreciate your responses.  I feel better informed now to make the decision on how to rectify the situation.  I will wait until the fix for the CD key is out because to be honest, I'll do anything I can to avoid reformatting. Again, thank you.. you've been very helpful (but I wont promise that Im done asking questions just yet).

    Thursday, May 4, 2006 12:45 AM
  • What is the "Yada Yada" validation failure.
    Thursday, May 4, 2006 2:44 AM
  • That means that I tried to copy/paste the error message and it wouldnt do it, and I dont remember the exact wording :p  Its the same general wording that most people here are seeing, that its not genuine, and it gives me the option to buy the kit.
    Thursday, May 4, 2006 9:08 AM
  •  iluvaxlrose wrote:

    Its the one that says 'this version is not genuine.. you may be a victim of counterfeiting yada yada yada'. 

    The OEM questions (downgrade, etc) were found on some Microsoft data pages, that I found by searching the site for OEM activation.  I believe it said that one drawback to OEM products was that they were tied to the motherboard, and if the motherboard were replaced, it constituted a new system, which rendered the OEM invalid as it was only good for use on one system.  Also that retail versions allowed you to 'downgrade' and go back to a previous system, but an OEM did not allow that (why you'd want to is beyond me anyway)

    I really appreciate your responses.  I feel better informed now to make the decision on how to rectify the situation.  I will wait until the fix for the CD key is out because to be honest, I'll do anything I can to avoid reformatting. Again, thank you.. you've been very helpful (but I wont promise that Im done asking questions just yet).

     

    iluvaxlrose:

     

    I can't seem to find the articles concerning OEM CD's - so I cannot fully comment on it. HOWEVER, I think you may be referring to royalty CD's that Microsoft has for some OEM's and Systen Builders. These royalty CD's will require a special activation code only availible from the System Builder/OEM themselves to pre-activate on a machine (because they are designed to be pre-installed on a computer to be sold to consumers).

     

    The tool should be out soon. :)

    Thursday, May 4, 2006 3:33 PM
  • The tool should be out soon. :)

    Excellent, thank you..  Will there be a post/thread made when its released for those of us that are waiting for it?  Thanks again.. its greatly appreciated.

    Thursday, May 4, 2006 4:36 PM
  • Yes, I'll sticky an announcement.
    Friday, May 5, 2006 12:03 AM
  •  Dave MS wrote:

    1. your system will continue to function without issue until the media arrives and you can re-install clean. I would recommend that you also turn on Automatic Updates until you can do this. This will ensure you are still receiving critical updates and your system is secure.

     

    My question is this...will my system continue to function until such time as I get valid software or was your response to the person that bought the software directly from Microsoft and therefore they know that person bought it and will install it.  The software that I bought was from a retailer but I don't have a clue how to back up my stuff and my friend who knows all that stuff doesn't have the time for about 2-3 weeks.  Am I ok until then?  I hope I'm being clear but its hard when I'm wickedly tired.

    Friday, May 5, 2006 3:39 AM