11. March 2007 · Comments Off on MICROSOFT – THE EVIL EMPIRE · Categories: General, My Head Hurts, Rant

I spent a couple of hours this afternoon trying to reactivate Windows XP on Red Haired Girl’s Mac. It ran fine when I installed it, but because it is on a differant machine than what it was originally installed on, it went dark after a period of time. Because I did not set it up with capability to access the Internet, a phone installation was required – just as well because I knew that explanations would be required about the entirely different hardware footprint. According to Microsoft, the purpose of requiring activation is to prevent “casual copying”, and that the minor inconvenience will actually save consumers money through the prevention of piracy.

Well, the truth is a bit more complicated. According to the customer service rep and his supervisor (Bill Gates was unable to come to the phone), their policy is not to activate preinstalled versions of Windows, regardless of the circumstances. I asked him what would happen if I had fried a motherboard (which requires activation), to which he replied that it would be a warranty issue with Gateway. I asked what if the warranty is expired, he told me that, in that scenario, the license dies with the computer.

The issue is supposed to come down to one license, one computer. I can live with that. All they needed to do was give me a 45 digit number (really – 45 digits) and RHG would be playing Nancy friggin’ Drew and I would be happy, but nooooo. They want a war, and that’s what they are going to get. The first thing I am going to do is carve up the computer that the software was originally installed on and send it to Bill Gates with a signed affadavit attesting to the fact that it is no longer in service. Any other ideas would be appreciated.

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