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Company that disentangled WPA says it's built a better one

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The German company that disentangled Windows Product Activation last year has followed this up by producing its own version, which it claims is far superior. At the time of the release of last year's WPA analysis, Fully Licensed GmbH said it actually supported WPA, and now it's proving it does.

The company's product, Licenturion Product Activation (LPA), binds the application to the hardware components of a computer, as does WPA, but is claimed to tolerate hardware modifications and "unlike Microsoft LPA provides full transparency to end-users. According to company CEO Matthias Kunze: "When we analysed Microsoft's much-criticised approach, we quickly discovered that consumers really want to know what's going on during the activation process."

LPA uses Fully Licensed's "Asymmetric Keys" technology, and is proof against key generation programs. The appearance of key generators, which can be used to produce Windows product keys indistinguishable from the real thing, is arguably the most fatal of the developments that have been undermining WPA. LPA keys are based on digital signatures and public key cryptography, but are "only" 36 letters, which Fully Licensed feels will be acceptable.

Register writers, who have little experience of going 36 characters without making a mistake, beg leave to differ. Whatever, there's a beta available at the company's site, together with further details. The company proposes to sell it into the US software industry; we doubt Microsoft will bite, but you never know... ®

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