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Windows 7 stolen product key


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I pre ordered Windows 7 Home Premium from Amazon.co.uk and installed it when it arrived.

Two weeks ago my house was burgled and my software was stolen and the product serial key sticker was stolen off my PC tower as well.

I rang MS customer services straight away to get them to deactivate my old key and give me a new one. I was told that it didn't work like that and that it was my responsibility "to protect my software investment" and that it basically wasn't their problem. If someone tries to use my serial key and contacts their customer services to activate their installation they will deactivate my key and disable my operating system as well. The only advice I got from them was to contact amazon to see if I could get a refund ffs.

Am I supposed to lock my tower system in a safe in case I get burgled?

I've been using their operating systems since MSdos and I have never had such a poor response from them, I have previously installed new hardware on an XP system and had no problem getting a new serial key from them, so why the big change in attitude.

To be told that it's my problem and that I will need to buy another copy because they can't be bothered to help, or as they put it, "our anti-piracy measures are in place to protect Microsoft from fraud and not to protect customers" is complete rubbish from any company. I haven't even been able to give them the product key as they have no way to deal with keys being reported as stolen.

I've emailed them but they just keep refusing to confirm what their policy is. Any thoughts from anyone?

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Weren't you insured? In a similar situation my insurer paid our for replacement copies of the OS having established I had bought the ugrades in the first place.


I wouldn;t not expect Microsoft to be able to do anything useful, as the key is effectively a 'virtual' device to validate the purchase, and in itself has no inherent value.

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Excess on the insurance made a claim pointless.

My point with the product key is why the hell they have to disable my OS. If someone stole my spare car keys I wouldn't need to buy a new car, just replace the locks.

I've been robbed once and lost the physical product, that I can accept, but for MS to effectively add insult to injury by "stealing" the virtual product from me instead of providing a new key gets right up my nose.


Another point that I have tried to raise with them is that they have no system in place to allow me to report my product key stolen, so from that I infer that there is no attempt on Microsoft's part to gather evidence on the identities of people who ring up to get a stolen or pirated product key activated. Perhaps I should use a pirated product key, safe in the knowledge that if it doesn't work I won't be getting a knock on the door asking why I am breaking the law.

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The product key is there for THEIR protection, not yours - and never has been. You'll find this the same with any popular software product (Adobe, Norton and the rest). These keys were to stop unrestricted use of their software on multiple machines.


This isn't the same as changing car locks. Once the car is bought, the manufacturer has no interest in it until you buy another.


You're being fooled into believing all this 'protecting' is a two way street - and the government is doing the same with ID Cards... it is their to help and protect us - not to create a massive database that pulls all the various strands together so we can be checked on constantly to see what we are up to, and control it (if necessary).


If you use a pirated key, you lose the moral high ground. I will not and have never knowingly used pirated music or software, I just won't - but others think nothing of it. No wonder DRM came in, but then this won't protect YOUR purchase from anyone, especially if it is stolen.

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