Chinese Windows Users Accuse Microsoft Of Hacking Their Computers

from the a-successful-antipiracy-day,-huh? dept

Part of Microsoft's big antipiracy day festivities was to talk about how it was ramping up efforts to crack down on unauthorized copies of its software in China (again, despite the fact that unauthorized copies in China are part of what helped establish Microsoft software as the de facto standard there). The efforts in China include more use of what Microsoft likes to call "Windows Genuine Advantage" -- which is really a DRM system known mostly for falsely accusing legitimate buyers of being pirates. Approximately half a million legitimate buyers were accused of piracy, leading many to suggest that WGA is quite similar to a rootkit, making your computer not function properly, all in the name of stopping piracy.

Over in China, it appears that they're not at all happy about WGA. Last year, a student there sued Microsoft for privacy violations in sending info back to Redmond via WGA, and in response to Microsoft's "get tough on piracy" campaign, apparently a bunch of folks in China are publicly denouncing WGA as being an illegal intrusion on their computers. They're accusing the company of trying to control computers without permission and of "hacking" their systems. Microsoft's response, of course, would be that legitimate buyers have nothing to worry about -- even though that doesn't quite seem to be the case. Still, it's difficult to feel all that sympathetic for the complainers -- as they should have known what they were getting with Windows. If they don't like it, there are other options on the market.

Filed Under: china, hacking, rootkit, windows genuine advantage
Companies: microsoft


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  1. icon
    crystalattice (profile), 24 Oct 2008 @ 2:10am

    Options are available

    Macs are just as capable as Windows and have most of the same software. Linux is good for the vast majority of what people want to use a computer for; with Wine, even Windows programs will work.

    Yes, it will take a little effort to learn a new OS. The problem is everyone forgets what a struggle it was to learn how to use Windows. Especially since MS decides to change the "Windows idiom" with every upgrade; that's why they have "Windows Classic" as an option for XP.

    Learning how to use a Mac only takes a few days; a week at most. That's how long it took my wife when we bought our first Mac, and she's not computer-savvy.

    Linux can take a little bit longer, depending on the distro. But if someone is pissed off with a vendor monitoring the computer, it's a small price to pay.

    So, yes. There are options. People just have to be willing to take a few days of pain.

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