Microsoft: Very Good Results in Updating Vista Against Hacks

Microsoft claims that it has seen what the company referred to as very good results in fighting Windows piracy with Windows Vista, although it has failed to elaborate on the subject. At the Microsoft Financial Analyst Meeting 2008, Bill Veghte, Senior Vice President, Online Services & Windows Business Group, indicated that
the anti-piracy mitigations built in Windows Vista by default helped curb the piracy affecting the operating
system. Additionally, with the release of Service Pack 1, the Redmond giant tackled the most widespread workarounds designed to permit the pirating of Vista RTM.

“We put a set of technologies in Windows Vista that fundamentally made it harder to pirate, number one, and number two, we have the ability in Windows Vista to update the product based on piracy types that we’re seeing in the market,” Veghte said last week. “So, for example, over the last 12 months, there are three leading piracy types, three leading ways that people are pirating Windows Vista, getting around the things that we’ve done, and we’ve updated millions of systems globally to address that leak or that hole.”

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SP1 for Vista was set up to kill both the OEM BIOS and the Grace Timer hacks capable of bypassing the anti-piracy measures introduced by Microsoft. But in addition to addressing Vista cracks heads-on, the software company also made a step back in terms of its fight against piracy, but certainly a step forward as far as user experience is concerned. Following SP1, Microsoft cut off the Reduced Functionality Mode kill switch built into the operating system to lock users out of inactivated or pirated copies of the platform. The results applauded by Veghte remained abstract, but the fact is that Microsoft accounted for over $16,8 billion in revenue for the Windows client division in fiscal year 2008, and this figure could be translated into a measurement of the company’s success against piracy.

“We’ve seen very, very good results in the efforts that we’ve done to date, and certainly you saw in our bottom line numbers the progress that we made on this front last fiscal year, and I certainly expect as this technology and as Windows Vista makes its way more broadly into the install base that those demand efforts will continue to pay dividends

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