Feeds

Microsoft's WGA changes today

Genuine Advantage not proven

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

Microsoft's Windows Genuine Advantage is being updated today, in what the company claims is response to customer feedback.

The original WGA was hugely unpopular, especially when it emerged the software was secretly "phoning home" - sending information about users' computers back to Redmond.

It also caused problems for some network managers faced with dozens of "false positives" - users told they were running fake software when in fact they were not. The original WGA found 22 per cent of systems scanned failed the test.

Microsoft has taken a page out of the Scottish legal system and added an extra verdict of "not proven" - WGA for XP will now label your software genuine, non-genuine, or not sure. Last time round some users found minor hardware changes like installing a new video card meant they had to re-activate their software through WGA.

The opt-in software is available for download from www.microsoft.com/genuine/. It will then be rolled out in Automatic Updates over "the next several weeks or months". The software will be updated every 90 to 120 days.

Microsoft UK anti-piracy head Michala Alexander told us: "There's no denying WGA has had its challenges but we really think we've listened to customers. When a customer fails it now gives more information as to why. Some 33 million people have gone through WGA now in the UK alone. We've added a glossy wizard to make it easier for customers. If any IT manager does have problems, please get in touch and we'll try to help." ®

The next step in data security

More from The Register

next story
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
Mozilla shutters Labs, tells nobody it's been dead for five months
Staffer's blog reveals all as projects languish on GitHub
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 Healthkit gets a bug SO Apple KILLS it. That's real healthcare!
Not fit for purpose on day of launch, says Cupertino
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.