Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Microsoft Accidentally Activates Windows 8 Pro For Free

Christmas may have just come a little yearly for a few lucky software pirates as a glitch in Microsoft's Activation System is inadvertently fully activating pirated copies of Windows 8 Pro.

The flaw, first made public by Reddit user noveleven (Reddit has since removed the post)– shows that with just a bit of work, anyone can access a Microsoft-approved product key and activate a copy of Windows 8 Pro for free.

The glitch is found when users of partially activated version of Windows 8 visit the Microsoft add-on site to request a Windows 8 Media Center Pack license. Users simply need to supply an email address to be sent a free license meant to activate the new upgrade. However before sending out the new the Media Center keys the system doesn't check to see if the copy of Windows is legitimate or not. If users have a KMS-activated copy of Windows 8, with or without a legitimate license, the new Media Center key van be used to fully activate their systems.

The free upgrade to Windows Media Center only lasts until January 31, 2013, so the window is only open for a few more months for pirates to use the work around. Assuming that is that Microsoft doesn't close the holes before then.

I don't advocate pirating Windows in this way. Honestly it's cheap enough to upgrade that you might as well just go out and get a legitimate copy of Windows 8 if you really want o upgrade. This not only keeps you on the up and up but it gives you the option to re-install down the road if needed. This work around will only last on your system as long as you keep the same active install.

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