This just appeared on Boing Boing.

DRM bites again: the Microsoft Windows Genuine Advantage servers (which every XP and Vista install phones home to) all failed sometime earlier today.

The result? Every single Windows XP and Vista installation — except possibly those with volume license keys — is being marked as counterfeit when it tries to check in.

Looks like this isn’t the weekend to install a copy of Windows or buy a new Windows PC. Now where are they selling Macs.

When you read the forums on this (linked in blockquote below) it’s incredible.

Validation issues – Microsoft is having WGA server problems

Thank you for your response.

I’m sorry to inform you that the Windows Genuine server might be down for few days. I have escalate the issue to our Genuine team, kindly try to validate again on Tuesday 28 Aug 2007.

Thank you for contacting Microsoft Technical Support.

If these programs were properly designed they would all self-validate if the validation server went down. The cheaters would have a free day or two and be caught later. How hard can that be? But no. Now everyone is assumed to be a crook. This is a developing story.

UPDATE: It’s fixed, relatively speaking. Sort of.


I understand the frustration you all are going through. I’m investigating the issue right now.

I guarantee that we’re working on this issue right now. For folks wondering, MACHINES ARE NOT SHUTTING DOWN with reduced functionality.

I guarantee that I will personally resolve this issue before I go to sleep – whether or not it is Tuesday I sleep.

  1. ECA says:

    Is your last name, McIntosh??

  2. Ian says:

    no ECA,

    its ‘freedom’ 🙂

  3. Lauren the Ghoti says:

    Show me one person who has to “use only iTunes”, pedro… 😉

  4. Milo says:

    #119 yes and yes.

  5. TIHZ_HO says:

    #125 I have a Nano – nice – but iTunes pisses me off to no end because unless I open up a iTunes account (and I why should I have too?) no album art. I put a in a CD and in seconds MS WMP 11 has the album art up. And MS is bad? They both have their issues, but Apple…

    Unless you drink the Apple cool-aid they sure do get people pissed off!!


  6. TIHZ_HO says:

    It was a Christmas present by the way from my wife…a good friend of ours has a Apple Mac, she told me later she laughs knowing now I get just as pissed of at Apple as she does… W…T…F?! There’s one for the books!


  7. Lauren the Ghoti says:

    Here, T_Z, pedro.

    You guys apparently devote about 0.002 µS to a problem before throwing up your hands and bitching.

    Try this.

  8. AZ says:

    How much does a genuine windows CD cost to produce anyway?

  9. Ian says:

    #123 freedom, as in “be locked with at&t” freedom? or in “use only itunes” freedom?

    freedom that I use a windows mobile XDAII with hacked firmware
    freedom that I’ve never bought music from itunes or any other DRM restricted store (and yes I know you can buy DRM free tracks in itunes now)

    Here is a question for you though Pedro, does your plays-for-sure play for sure on your Zune? no…. didn’t think so.

    “freedom, as in “be locked with at&t” freedom?”

    Any phone you buy in the UK via contract is ‘locked’ to a certain provider. One thing is damn sure though, they WILL NOT get away with what AT&T have done, for a start its white market legal to open a phone in the UK, you will still be under contract from the provider you signed up with, but after half of your contract is over you can phone them up and cut it down to £15 a month if you wished.

    I couldnt give a rats ass about itunes to be honest, ipods are nice but I’m in no hurry to buy one….

    The iphone on the other hand? man you guys are getting shafted…. just get a winmobile HTC phone with GPS, wifi, HSDPA etc.

    I hate to say it but apple will need to put 3G minimal in the iphone before it will be a success in the UK, we are used to far better phone than that.

  10. TIHZ_HO says:

    #130, 131 Thanks for that 😀 Usually I do do a search when I need to do something – but I didn’t think about this one.

    If I make a point about this in that one has to install a ‘hack’ or other software to get around Apple meanwhile the Apple Mac community points a finger at WinPC users for using ‘hacks’ and buggy programs to get around MS. See that?

    I guess it is the same as people in other countries pointing out how stupid the US is when they are stupid as well. Doesn’t change the fact that they might be right. 😉


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