Microsoft Kills Windows 7 Activation Leak

Microsoft's director of Genuine Windows Alex Kochis officially acknowledged the leak of a "special product key" for Windows 7 Ultimate RTM (release to manufacturers) in this blog, saying that the leaked key was meant to activate copies of the new OS pre-installed by a certain OEM partner (Lenovo).

Kochis also said that customers who purchase PCs with Windows 7 from Lenovo shouldn't experience validation issues despite the leak, however Microsoft has moved to prevent PCs from being sold that use the key in question. His blog also indicates that the leaked key will still work, but will be easily identified.

"Windows 7 already includes an improved ability to detect hacks, also known as activation exploits, and alert customers who are using a pirated copy," he said. "There is a hack that is said to enable, when paired with the leaked key, a system to install and use a copy of Windows 7 Ultimate. Both the hack and the key are indications that a copy of Windows may not be genuine. The Windows Activation Technologies included in Windows 7 are designed to handle situations such as this one, and customers using these tools and methods should expect Windows to detect them."

Hochis also added that Microsoft's primary goal is to protect users from becoming unknowing victims, claiming that pirates (or customers who use pirated copies of Windows 7) are at a greater risk of identity theft and malware.

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    Top Comments
  • Canceling torrent
    25
  • it wont matter. Pirates will find a back door anyways. If it can be protected, it can be disabled.
    13
  • I love how its always "to protect people from virii and identity theft" rather than they just want their money since it really doesn't make you more vulnerable.
    11
  • Other Comments
  • Canceling torrent
    25
  • Figured they would. Of course pirates will still hack it. Anyway I'd like for them to spend more time making sure the OS works right. I'll probably get win 7 eventually, but I'll wait till they put out a few patches for it ^_^. At least they did good buy letting alot of customers be lab rats, uh, I mean valued RC testers :D. Hopefully it won't have too many issues at launch but memories of the state of the Vista and XP at retail launchs don't fill me with hope :)
    1
  • it wont matter. Pirates will find a back door anyways. If it can be protected, it can be disabled.
    13