back to article Microsoft secretly yanks TechNet product keys

Microsoft has quietly changed the terms of its TechNet subscription service by reducing the number of product keys made available for download to its users, The Register has learned. On 15 September Redmond lowered the number of product keys dished out to TechNet subscribers from 10 to a maximum of five, in Microsoft’s latest …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    unfair change to contract terms ?

    is this legal

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Gates Horns

      Legal?

      No its Microsoft

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Jobs Horns

      ref unfair change to contract terms

      It's Microsoft they can buy anything....

    3. Paolo Marini
      Thumb Down

      title

      when they are written on a web page, why not :-)

      irony of web 2.0 aside, who would trust a license or T&C written on a volatile medium...?

    4. IPatentedItSoIOwnIt
      Gates Horns

      Does it matter?

      They are after all Microsoft, and have never given a f@#k if it's legal

    5. Vigilante
      WTF?

      Sucks.

      I am certainly going to be contacting them regarding it, I just resubscribed and this was NOT part of the agreement. I'll be cancelling my subscripton (which I've held for 4 years) if there is no reticence in this matter.

      I would not have minded half as much had I been informed in advance (which would have been before I resubscribed), but I'm wondering now if it was an intentional omission. I even upgraded to Professional with media from my previous standard account at the same time... Stung twice as it were.

      1. frymaster

        doesn't really suck

        @vigilante... just out of curiosity, what LEGITIMATE use to you have for your keys that works with 10 but doesn't work with 5? bearing in mind the keys are for testing purposes only...

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Gates Halo

      The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

      MS's (and numerous others) terms & conditions state they can change terms & conditions any time they choose.

      If you don't like it it, don't buy a license to use their software.

    7. bertie bassett
      Gates Halo

      Unfair Change to Contract Terms

      Yeah - it probably is legal

      The bit about 'unfair change' etc only applies to consumer contracts, since we're talking about TechNet, the customer is definitely a business and probably a large one at that, no doubt somewhere in the TechNet t's & c's MSFT have left themselves the right to change on notice or on will. Ok so they clearly haven't given notice but....

    8. Kev99

      Already got burned by change

      first, @ Anonymous coward > my feeble understanding of most contract law is that the terms of a contract cannot be made retroactive without the advised consent of both parties. That means a click thru screen doesn't cut it. In fact, I think those click thru EULAs are under litigation in the federal courts.

      I got burned by this change. I had a copy of Win7 Home Premium that I had bought & installed back in early February. It was "deauthenticated" in September & MS Technet claimed the key was invalid. I personally believe it was a bunch of hooey that a key that was valid back in March would all of a sudden be killed after 7 months because "Microsoft can't track all those keys and the police don't go after a stolen car until it's reported". Bovine excrement! Not only can the police snag a nicked auto using common software & computer programs on a drive by basis, but I can't believe the registration database is NOT connected to the authentication database somehow. I still think it was a scam by Microsoft to get more revenues to pay for Ballmer's big mouth and Gates' palace.

  2. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Penguin herder
      Joke

      Keys for Code::Blocks, OpenOffice, etc.

      I have an answer for those of you who can't get what Microsoft promised you. Find a friend with a Linux box, open a terminal and type uuidgen. Copy the result EXACTLY. Download and burn any open source software you want to a CDR, and write the UUID on it; then install as usual.

      Ok, I'm not mocking *you* only pointing out the obvious difference between some really very good stuff (I'm much more partial to LaTeX than any word processor I've used) and Microsoft's offerings: the open source folks want you to use the software; Microsoft wants to be certain you've paid for theirs (preferably more than once).

  3. Brett Turcotte
    FAIL

    Sigh...

    And I just renewed...

  4. Henry Wertz 1 Gold badge

    So how will they handle refunds?

    This is a change of terms with an adverse material effect to the purchaser, so they should be able to receive a refund as they are not getting what they paid for.

  5. LesC
    FAIL

    Technet

    I'm a user of Technet Pro and have been for a few years now. It's not for all products, some like Vista and older servers still have 10 but XP & W7 have been reduced to 5. Things like multiple activation keys havn't been affected by this.

    I was also told that it was a bug in the system.

    I pay good money for this service now to find that I've lost half of what I paid for . Evaluation Copies = plenty of sales for Microsoft when the client buys the full monty.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    MS are learning from Apple!

    Here is what you used to get for less / free, now we're going to charge you it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      WTF?

      Please do

      explain what you mean?

      I have only paid for one upgrade from Jaguar to Snow Leopard, and that price, for 5 licenses, at a cost comparable to a MS upgrade (and that included iWorks). I have three Macs, so I feel I got a good deal.

      1. Bilgepipe
        Gates Horns

        @Aimee

        S/He *can't* explain it. Windows apologists and anti-Apple-tards aren't burdened by the ball-and-chain of truth. Whatever they puke out is automatically accurate.

    2. Charles Manning

      But in Apple's case

      it is probably still worth paying

  7. Cameron Colley

    I didn't buy a subscription for this reason.

    I was tempted to pay for a subscription a few years back, since it seemed good value for someone who likes to play with software.

    I didn't because I feared that leasing from a company known for illegal practices might not be a good idea.

    I loose track of how many FOSS and other free software I've played with since -- only having "personal use" as a stipulation on a very rare occasion.

  8. ekimdam
    FAIL

    This cannot possibly

    be legal! If you are going to remove my keys that I PAID FOR, then you need to refund some cash ASAP! Otherwise I expect all of the product that I PAID FOR to be given back.

  9. Andy Jones

    Price of subscription

    Will they be cutting the price of the subscription? Thought not!

  10. tickedon
    Grenade

    Phew.

    Very glad I didn't renew then in July! Part of the attraction was being able to more or less not worry about the number of keys as I tested in VM's and on the desktops/laptops around here and similar... having to track keys and ask (call??) for more re-activations would just be really annoying.

    If I had renewed, I'd have asked for a refund. Not sure it's really right to change this during peoples contracts...

  11. Is it me?

    You could always

    Switch to Oracle products which don't need to be activated

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    no it is not a bug. It is a smash & grab raid

    Microsoft clearly need the money to pimp up their share price and pay the dividend.

    Anon as I've been hit by this as well.

    We probably won't be renewing our Tech Net subscription in Jan because of this underhanded balls up.

    We are using less & less MS software these days anyway and it is almost cheaper to buy the few products we need outright.

    About half our devs only every use Eclipse or Netbeans now whereas 3yr ago most of our stuff was .Net. No longer I'm happy to say.

  13. MetalJon
    Gates Horns

    Read the EULA

    @Anon

    Sadly, yes--read the EULA. You do not have a contract with Microsoft; you have a license. Microsoft is free to change the terms of the license at any time without prior notification or consent. Call me a freetard, but this is one of the great injustices of "intellectual property." It has given near unmitigated power to licensers to revoke rights from licensees, as is the case here. Agreements like this clearly ought to be governed by contract law, and this clearly ought to be a violation of the contract; however, Microsoft claims that you are subscribing to a "service," the terms of which Microsoft may change at will. I understand why companies do this--they care primarily and almost exclusively about their own interests and the interests of their shareholders. What I don't understand is why the legislatures and courts have bought it. The current state of IP law is a monstrous injustice.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Pint

      For your information

      the Free and Open Source Software is no stranger to what the world calls Intellectual Property, they also have licenses and EULA's which they chose to enforce from time to time. The difference is in the nature of those licenses and their effect on you as an end-user. Problem is that people refuse to read and understand those license contracts and prefer to switch off their brain when acquiring software. Nobody in this world is forcing you to use proprietary software or FOSS, it's the same like eating in a restaurant: if you don't like it, don't get in there. It is as simple as that. Oh, but I badly need that proprietary software, you say ? Then just pay the price (money and consequences). Microsoft has all the right to inflict all this on you because we all allowed them to do it.

    2. jonathanb Silver badge

      They may think they can do that, I don't

      http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/1999/2083/schedule/2/made

      (b)inappropriately excluding or limiting the legal rights of the consumer vis-à-vis the seller or supplier or another party in the event of total or partial non-performance or inadequate performance by the seller or supplier of any of the contractual obligations, including the option of offsetting a debt owed to the seller or supplier against any claim which the consumer may have against him;

      c)making an agreement binding on the consumer whereas provision of services by the seller or supplier is subject to a condition whose realisation depends on his own will alone;

      (d)permitting the seller or supplier to retain sums paid by the consumer where the latter decides not to conclude or perform the contract, without providing for the consumer to receive compensation of an equivalent amount from the seller or supplier where the latter is the party cancelling the contract;

      (f)authorising the seller or supplier to dissolve the contract on a discretionary basis where the same facility is not granted to the consumer, or permitting the seller or supplier to retain the sums paid for services not yet supplied by him where it is the seller or supplier himself who dissolves the contract;

      (j)enabling the seller or supplier to alter the terms of the contract unilaterally without a valid reason which is specified in the contract;

      (k)enabling the seller or supplier to alter unilaterally without a valid reason any characteristics of the product or service to be provided;

      (m)giving the seller or supplier the right to determine whether the goods or services supplied are in conformity with the contract, or giving him the exclusive right to interpret any term of the contract;.

  14. Zippy's Sausage Factory
    Gates Horns

    Can you spell "class action"?

    Surely if the product keys were part of the conditions of the Technet licence when it was purchased, changing the number of keys means changing the product. Since the sale constitutes a contract, surely anyone who has already paid can sue M$ for breach of contract?

    This sounds to me like a move that was - at best - ill thought out, and at worst, disastrously brain-damaged, if not actually criminal in many legislations.

    Silly, silly Microsoft. This is one that they might be likely to end up regretting...

  15. Marty
    Stop

    its Micro$haft.....

    it's Microshaft, it may not be legal but do they care? not one jot. Who is going to take them on? Another class action in the USA where some lawyer gets rich, microsoft lawyers get richer and ten years from now tech net subscribers get a 10% refund on 2010 subscription fees.

  16. Nigel Wright
    FAIL

    I am not very happy about this

    A very terse email is going to be sent...I won't be renewing. This is another reason to move to a Linux distro....being on the receiving Microshaft's end of "sharp" business practices.

  17. Wallyb132
    Grenade

    Ok this is bullshit...

    Very few stories on El Reg directly affect me, especially ones about changes to terms of Service and so on, so i usually laugh them off. This one however pissed me off instantly and completely*.

    My technet subscription expires the end of next month, i'll have to weigh very seriously whether i'm going to renew it or not.

    The subscriber downloads and product keys are the only reason to subscribe to technet, without those the service is useless, less than useless. the only other useful benefit possibly is the 2 free support incidents per year. i say possibly useful because i dont actually use my support incidents, i have yet to come across a situation that i've had to call MS support, i pride myself on that, i dread the day when a situation arrives that i've exhausted all my options and resources to the point that i feel i must make that phone call, it'll probably mark the beginning of the end of my IT days./

    The service offers nothing else really, yippu yippy you get 3 elearning courses per quarter, most of the ones offered are retarded, and thier nothing i cant find for free thanks to my little friends over at demonoid.

    I think fair is fair, you cut my product keys in half, i'll be cutting my payment in half? that would work out fine for me, but i highly doubt they'll go for that...

    *Dear Moderatrix, my derived anger is not directed at El Reg, but at the contents of the article, and at microsoft directly, so it wont be necessary to reject this comment, thank you...

  18. PaulR79
    WTF?

    Prices still the same I bet

    How does removing half or 8/10 keys improve security exactly? Anyone? I'd be more inclined to believe they got tired of people legally buying a subscription then (grey area here) selling keys to friends and family at a vastly reduced price. Unfortunately for Microsoft they've effectively made the program useless and changing the terms with no notice will likely cost them due to contract breaches. I bet they won't be offering subscribers 50% of the money back or 80% in the other cases.

    The only security improvement from this is the security of money for less than they agreed to supply.

    1. frymaster

      not a grey area at all

      it's not any kind of grey area; technet downloads are supposed to be used for IT staff testing deployments, not for general purpose use. and unlike the exact number of keys you get for each individual product (which is NOT specified in the contract or T's & C's), the "testing only" restriction is quite clear

  19. Al S

    Microsoft's response

    I have contacted MS concierge team about this and they are telling me I can use each key up to 10 times for activating windows so I only need 2 keys to allow installs to up to 20 computers. Does allowing multiple activations for single product keys not actually increase piracy?

  20. Yeik
    Gates Horns

    almost

    And just a couple weeks ago I was thinking, i should go on and get more keys. I didn't and now I am out of keys to pull. I will be calling and requesting compensation of some sort, extra account, maybe free renewal in hopes they MIGHT come out with something decent this year.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I've been expecting this...

    Technet has been a "secret" for years. All the techies getting almost zero cost on almost all of Microsoft's software packages. Face it, pay for basically one single package and get ALL of it! What's not to love. But recently, the internet's been a-buzz about this service, I'm sure sales have skyrocketed for Technet. You had to expect them to slim down the offerings so as to not sell out too much. It was just too good of a deal to last. It is really still a good deal though. One small price for everything? You have to admit it's the cheapest ticket for Microsoft goods you can get, even after the slimdown.

    I wonder if the other services got affected too? MSDN? I forget the other "small business tech" service similar to TechNet, but it probably got hit too.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Will they refund 50% of the fee?

    Just used the subscription management page to ask them to reinstate the original number of licenses or give me half my money back. Won't be holding my breath whilst I wait to visit the small claims court.

  23. Alan W. Rateliff, II
    Paris Hilton

    Hardly a stretch to hit MAPS next

    I can imagine that Action Pack subscribers might be next. Although, we generally receive multiple-activation keys, and not separate keys for most products.

    A couple of years ago Microsoft unveiled new requirements for sales qualifications in order to renew or purchase an Action Pack subscription. I see how it is intended to help boost sales by training, and there is a plethora of sales-oriented crap in there which, quite honestly, most techs like myself not only abhor but simply do not have the time for the marketing "yay, Microsoft" aspect of it and use the MAPS to train us to support its (broken) software.

    I made it clear that I would NOT participate in the sales qualifications as I was too busy to bother with them as I was selling and supporting Microsoft products on a daily basis. I barely have time to make angry phone calls about hoops through which I have to jump to sore my product.

    Paris, multiple activiations... aw, yeah.

  24. Dave N
    WTF?

    Kicked in the teeth

    Why? Anti-piracy? Windows activation is bad enough, but this is ridiculous - we are paying professionals. We PAID for these keys. Why punish us?

    My career is founded on Microsoft tech, but that doesn't mean I like it. Every day it gets a little bit harder to be a Microsoft professional.

  25. John Bailey
    Happy

    Bwhaaaaa

    This is why I switched to Linux. WGA came in, I went out.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      FAIL

      Switch?

      I'll be switching to ReactOS when it goes gold. Too bad that wouldn't happen for a few more years. Which is a shame.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    WTF?

    Dat Gummit!

    Well my TechNet sub comes up in March, and I'll not be renewing due to this dirty deed.

    PIsses me off because I did NOT abuse the system.

    I was tempted to rush into the license store day 1 of my sub and click request license 10 times on every edition of every product even though I could never pilot them all just to dump to a spread sheet for retention in case.....but I didn't I only used a few licenses for things I was running in the lab / test environment, and now the terms change & we get screwed.

    Nice.

    If the backlash causes a temporary reversal, I will have learned from my mistake and take the appropriate actions to secure all the benefits that were allegedly conferred to me upon subscription inception.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I just noticed by re-reading.

    10 each is now 5 each. That's a negative exponent. Exponents seem to be used to lie about debt by governments also.. It might even mistakenly be thought of as a good thing, until you start getting big numbers.

    Sure the USER with 10ea won't see the big numbers.

    Microsoft is the one who see's the big numbers

    Start with 100,000,000 users with 10ea, then divide by 2

    Because the numbers aren't used is no excuse to cut them off.

  28. Kevin Fields
    Stop

    Before we start...

    ... pissing and moaning about how Microsoft ripped us off, has anybody actually called Microsoft and requested a full or partial refund?

    1. Nigel Wright

      I've mailed them...

      I am writing to you with respect to my Technet subscription.

      Without prior notice or indeed any kind of communication it appears that you have changed the terms of my subscription insofar as you have reduced the number of software keys I have access to from 10 to 2 for most packages. Given that I paid a substantial amount of money on the basis and understanding that I have access to 10 (not 2) this constitutes a change and a breach of contract in the UK. This unduly affects my ability to make use of the subscription that I purchased it for - software testing.

      I am very unhappy with this state of affairs and respectfully request that you re-instate my subscription to the original extent for which I paid.

      Yours Sincerely,

  29. SilverWave
    Happy

    Because they can...

    Wow what a great way to alienate you most loyal fans.

  30. georgema

    Hmmm....wondered where they got to....

    Only just subscribed to Tech Net Professional and then a few weeks later wondered where the number of available keys had got to. This explains it. Really pissed that this was done without any notification or real justification.

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Pint

    Ha ha!

    About time! I'm getting fed up of these morons on forums everytime there is a discussion about some new MS gizmo, "Yeah well I don't pay full price for anything, I pay 50p a year and get the entire MS back catalogue from TechNet!". Well bully for you!

    Finally something to shut the smug gits up and stop them conning practically free software and giving it to their mates, while the rest of us have to pay full price for our software!

  32. Anonymous Coward
    WTF?

    Oh dear...

    So Billy has pulled a Jobs and moved goal posts eh? Did you lot even read the agreements you were signing up to, you know the bit you skimmed over in your desperate attempt to get the free MS toys? You know the bit with all the words and the phrase buried in there somewhere that says something like, "Billy's toys so Billy gets to make the rules! MS reserves the right to bend you over and exact it's pound of flesh and you can have some token free stuff if you behave like good little fanbois and pray at the church of Bill and Ballmer."?

    All the ones saying they will dump their subscriptions, phooey! Will you heck! No more than the Jobsian mob took their iPhones back then the hoo-ha about the aerial surfaced! You still see bucket loads of iPhone 4s about, despite all the hoo-ha. You will still be good little MS drones and sign up for more next year, because even if it's less, it's still better than spending full whack on the products you need or want to pay for. Where else you going to get all those fun toys for 200 sovs a year?

    All full of indignant rage, but when it comes down to it, just like the Job's Zealots and the Penguinistas, we all love the products we love and will always go back to them no matter how we get treated!

    Me I will stick with my trusty ZX Spectrum, as Sir Clive is now too senile to bother telling me what to do!

    1. Oligova
      Boffin

      Back to the roots

      I've just downloaded MSDOS/WIN311 again - strange it still doesn't require activation,..

      they must have forgotten.

  33. Fogcat

    MSDN != TechNet?

    Is TechNet different from MSDN? On MSDN yesterday it was still telling me I had used 2 out of 10 keys for windows 7

    1. Paul Westerman
      Happy

      MSDN

      Yep me too, I've got 10 on Win7 and Office 2010. Yay for us I guess :)

  34. Tom 13

    And yet El Reg tag Zuckerman with the "Take that Bitch!" tag?

    I think they have the wrong villain.

  35. There's a bee in my bot net

    How many?

    I was looking at taking out a technet subscription but am confused as to what it actually offers.

    Does the key limit appy to each product? i.e. 10, 5 or 2 keys per product or 10, 5 or 2 keys in total. I hadn't read this anywhere on the Technet site...

    1. Geoff Reed

      it is per product

      per product

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    At the risk of being unpopular...

    TechNet is license per individual and used for testing purposes, it is not a cheap way of getting product keys for thousands of pounds worth of software as many seem to see it.

    Very few testing setups will require multiple fully activated copies of Office 2010, or Windows 2008 for example, since the trial periods are usually more than sufficient – the trial version of 2008 for example lasts almost a year, and is even fully functional (bar security updates) when that time expires.

    Me thinks many people are pissed off as they will only be able to grab a free copy of Office 2010 Ultimate for just 5 PCs/laptops now and wont be able to give their friends a product key!

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hmm. Maybe they haven't gotten around to nerfing everyone yet.

    I have some level of Technet provided as part of my company’s action pack. I just checked; I could get 10 keys for everything that vomited forth keys. I took the liberty of ensuring that I requested (and recorded in an Excel file) all those keys just in case it's taking Microsoft some time to nerf Technet for everyone.

    Maybe it's because I'm in Canada? Either way: I have requested every single key I can. So long as they honour the grandfathered in keys, (which the article seems to suggest they will,) then let them nerf away. Sucks for anyone who didn’t get the opportunity to click “request key” a few hundred times to get all their keys before the nerfing occurred though.

    I sympathise with anyone caught by this.

  38. Peter Gathercole Silver badge
    Gates Horns

    I think you need to read the agreement AGAIN

    Part of the agreement, if I remember correctly, is that you are only permitted to use the keys that you obtain through Technet while you maintain the subscription.

    As soon as you stop paying the subscription, you need to buy new, full licences, or un-install the software. So you can expect that any keys that you used to fail the Windows Genuine Advantage test sometime in the future.

    This was the main reason I never took advantage of the apparently favourable conditions offered. I did not want to tie myself into a long-term agreement with MS where they could repeatedly demand money from me at their own terms.

    I would laugh you all for dancing with the devil, if it was not so tragic.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Incorrect

      And that is 100% false. The keys do NOT expire after the subscription expires. You just are not allowed to request more keys after the subscription expires.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Incorrect

      Funny how 2 people gave you thumbs up for that incorrect post.

      You also are NOT required to uninstall the software after the subscription expires. The subscription is ONLY for allowing you new keys, and allowing you to download the software. In fact you even still have access to Technet after the subscription expires... you just are not allowed to make new keys, or download anything. But all your current keys are still online, available to view or download (proof that you are still allowed to use them).

      1. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

        Maybe I was wrong.

        I cannot point to where I picked this up from, which is why I questioned whether I remembered it correctly, but I'm sure that I did read it at one time. Possibly it was an earlier agreement, or maybe one of the other type of arrangement that Microsoft had. I accept that the posting may be partially wrong.

        But the mere fact that the keys are still available does not really prove that you are still allowed to use them. Maybe someone who actually has a subscription can check their agreement, and quote or paraphrase what it says about lapsed subscriptions.

        I have just read what you are allowed to do with the software you obtain through TechNet from the technet.microsoft.com website. This appears to be an interesting quote regarding the use of the software: "Access over 70+ full-version Microsoft software for evaluation purposes only".

        In the License terms there is also:

        "Evaluation Software. One user may install and use copies of the evaluation software listed in the COMPONENTS.TXT file, even if you obtained a server license. You may use the evaluation software only to evaluate it. You may not use it in a live operating, in a staging environment or with data that has not been sufficiently backed up."

        and later in the same document:

        "SCOPE OF LICENSE. The software is licensed, not sold. This agreement only gives you some rights to use the software. Microsoft reserves all other rights. Unless applicable law gives you more rights despite this limitation, you may use the software only as expressly permitted in this agreement."

        I believe that these terms taken together would allow Microsoft to judge that long-term use of a particular license may not be for evaluation purposes (yes, I did read the "without any time or feature limits", but this is then qualified "for evaluation purposes only") and this would be enough to allow them to disable a license if they thought that the use was no longer for evaluation.

        And the moral is - Please read the terms and conditions that you agree to, especially with Microsoft. You may not get what you think.

        Legal Disclaimer: All of the quotes are taken directly from Copyrighted material contained on a Microsoft web site, and the rights remain with Microsoft in accordance with the text contained at http://www.microsoft.com/About/Legal/EN/US/IntellectualProperty/Copyright/default.aspx

  39. Geoff Reed
    Big Brother

    B@sta%ds

    Geez. I knew I needed to gen all my keys when I subscribed but kept putting it off.

  40. PCMcGee
    Pirate

    I've already had enough of Microsoft

    I had enough of Microsoft's bs a long time ago. As I am a consumer, not a business, I feel no remorse in using thier software free of charge. I paid for initial versions, and feel that repeatedly paying for ideas they've stolen from other operating systems is somehow disingenuous. As a result, I've decided it's best to keep thier software in trial mode, and continually rearm it. 'My digital life' forum has a great guide to this. If Microsoft knew how many people I've kept from switching to Apple's and if they were a company with any morals, they would have supported me with free copies anyway. As they are a cadre of thieving b*stards, sic semper tyrannis, I say.

  41. Blitz
    Gates Horns

    Not me yet?

    I'm a Microsoft Partner and as of this AM I still have the same entitlements I've had all year.

    Wondering if this is a phased rollout?

    Besides the moral dilema of having licenses taken away how many folks does this actually affect?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      You don't lose current keys

      You don't lose any keys you have already requested. Just the limits were changed for any new key requests.

      1. Blitz

        Thanks AC

        Thanks for clearing that up. So newer products will be restricted. Still not a big deal to me but I can understand how folks with larger lab setups might get a bit riled.

  42. Mectron

    let's see

    Pay 300$-500$ to MS (mostly EVERY YEAR) and get 10 key of everything.. (almost).

    MS cut (illegally) the number of key per product

    Pissed off customers (who will not buy windows/Office at full price) cancel they subscribtion and get all MS products from "alternate" sources and microsoft don't get a cent

    Microsoft loose big time

    i have a question for microsoft... .how is that going to help you fight piracy?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I agree

      I agree with your post. If anything, its going to increase piracy. So instead of Microsoft getting big money for their software, they will get nothing.

      Microsoft is making big bucks off this also, because the money is going directly to Microsoft (no middle man), and requires no packaging etc. Not even counting the fact of people re-subscribing again the following year, with no updates to the current software.

  43. Jim T
    Pirate

    *sigh*

    not enough keys to work with, time to go find those key generators again then.

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