Author Topic: Windows key shows up in Google search  (Read 3536 times)

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Offline Circlotron

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Windows key shows up in Google search
« on: December 17, 2017, 10:38:28 pm »
I just bought a copy of Windows Millenium on eBay and they provided a download link and the product licence key. This key shows up on google. Does that mean I have bought a widely distributed pirate copy, or can a product key work on more than one CD? I think it might be OEM software. They are going to ship me the motherboard that was part of the original pc that the software was installed in for the sake of the license agreement.

And yes... i didn't see the shipping cost of the motherboard when I clicked on "buy"...  :palm: :palm: :palm:

Google result
https://www.google.com.au/search?ei=q-42Ws3GLMXR0gTxnbWYAg&q=%22V69DC-KKY3R-HMTH3-9M9JM-VPRQ8%22&oq=%22V69DC-KKY3R-HMTH3-9M9JM-VPRQ8%22&gs_l=psy-ab.3...18856.20117.0.20674.2.2.0.0.0.0.202.376.0j1j1.2.0....0...1c.1.64.psy-ab..0.0.0....0.QkBJmo31UZM

What I bought.
https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/263348456676
 

Offline amspire

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2017, 10:56:55 pm »
The CDs are never linked to a particular individual license key, so you are getting a link to an ISO of the standard CD plus a publicly published key that has probably been used thousands of times. The board may have had that key installed on it - along with many other boards.

The key will probably work fine. The truth of it is that Microsoft probably don't really care now, and you just cannot let Windows ME anywhere near the internet anyway. There are just too many know exploits.

If you just want this for running a few old programs, it probably makes more sense just running the ME in a Virtualbox Virtual Machine.
 

Offline ovnr

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2017, 11:06:10 pm »
You bought a pirated product. The board is just random junk from wherever, and I'm sure you can ask them to shove it up their ass instead.

I'd report it to eBay. Sure, you have no evidence that it's pirated, but the whole "we'll send you a motherboard and charge you £30 shipping on it" is simply not how you do things.
 

Offline Ampera

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #3 on: December 18, 2017, 12:08:43 am »
It's probably pirated if it's being distributed like that. The fact that it's all over the internet means nothing, as MSDN keys and other non-bound keys will have that happen to them five seconds after the product ships.

To be brutally honest, you might as well save your money and pirate it online. While I, for legal reasons, must say I have never done this, and if you decide to do this, I note that it is an action you are taking on your own account and I should not be held responsible, it's probably the second greatest case of Abandonware you can get.

Microsoft doesn't make a penny on ME anymore, as amspire said. While all the EULAs and legal agreements are still in effect, the money it would cost Microsoft to even care for half a second is way more than they would ever see back. It is a bit of a paradox though. While you are DEFINITELY breaking the law, with no sugar coated way of putting it, it's not bothering anybody's profits, and there isn't a single company right now that could really care a whole lot.

A funny instance is WinWorldPC, a site that you can use to download such things. They used to have Windows XP on their site, but were given a C&D by Microsoft to take it off, as they were still selling some versions of XP. They, however, only put a C&D (to my knowledge) for Windows XP, even though they have all versions of windows up to ME on there. That legitimizes nothing, but it is something that shows that Microsoft honestly doesn't care what happens. They've made their dough, and they aren't going to be reasonably making any more.

if you do wish to get a legit copy, buy it boxed. If it doesn't come in at least a jewel case with an authentic looking disc inside, it's probably fake. Expect to pay unreasonable prices for funny people who try to con collectors into buying stuff like that. If it's not too late, tell the people you bought the copy from to keep the board. This is fishy, and you could definitely report that to eBay. What they will do, I don't know.

There are also MSDN subscriptions, but it's WAY more than I would spend (although one would be nice) for something like that.

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Online nctnico

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #4 on: December 18, 2017, 12:15:19 am »
You bought a pirated product. The board is just random junk from wherever, and I'm sure you can ask them to shove it up their ass instead.

I'd report it to eBay. Sure, you have no evidence that it's pirated, but the whole "we'll send you a motherboard and charge you £30 shipping on it" is simply not how you do things.
In this case it smells but many pieces of OEM software must be sold with hardware. However nobody said that had to be a new or complete PC. But this is likely a not a legal copy. I have bought software from Ebay before but only if I get a physical disk with the plastic wrap and hologram sticker.
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Offline amspire

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #5 on: December 18, 2017, 12:29:32 am »
You bought a pirated product. The board is just random junk from wherever, and I'm sure you can ask them to shove it up their ass instead.

I'd report it to eBay. Sure, you have no evidence that it's pirated, but the whole "we'll send you a motherboard and charge you £30 shipping on it" is simply not how you do things.
In this case it smells but many pieces of OEM software must be sold with hardware.
The OEM license was never illegal if it wasn't sold with hardware. It was just a case that Microsoft instructed dealers that if they wanted to keep sell OEM licenses, they had to sell it with hardware. Many companies sold it with something as cheap as a power cord. I vaguely remember some court cases that estingablished that if you had an unused OEM license, you could legally sell it on its own. The PC builder was not really allowed to use an OEM license of a PC they built according to the EULA I think, but I don't think Microsoft ever enforced that.
 

Offline Halcyon

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #6 on: December 18, 2017, 09:38:46 am »
Honestly, did you expect anything different? I always advise people to avoid buying any products which require activation on eBay. You don't know where the key has come from (or been) and how many other machines it has been used on. Also, unless your copy of Windows actually comes with the COA (Certificate of Authenticity) then it's not authentic. Simply having the key is not good enough.

I'd also be very wary of downloading an ISO of an Operating System some untrusted sources, unless you can verify the hash as being correct, you don't know what malware/spyware/viruses are included.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2017, 09:43:17 am by Halcyon »
 

Online rdl

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #7 on: December 18, 2017, 02:57:21 pm »
Windows ME is almost universally considered the worst Windows ever. I don't know why anyone would even want it. Does it actually require activation? I thought that started with XP. Can you even get any kind of updates for it at all from Microsoft?

That said, I'd never use some random copy of a disk or iso to install any OS. If you really want this ME, try to find a genuine original disk.
 
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Offline Ampera

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #8 on: December 18, 2017, 03:01:11 pm »
Windows ME is almost universally considered the worst Windows ever. I don't know why anyone would even want it. Does it actually require activation? I thought that started with XP. Can you even get any kind of updates for it at all from Microsoft?

That said, I'd never use some random copy of a disk or iso to install any OS. If you really want this ME, try to find a genuine original disk.

Windows ME wasn't too bad if you could manage it. It's a sort of Windows Vista thing. It really worked like shit at the time, but right now, if you can get the right hardware together, it's usable.
As a legacy computer nerd, I use operating systems even older, and I can say I believe product activation started with 95A, but wasn't enforced until 95B, C, or maybe even 98FE.

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Offline Freelander

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #9 on: December 18, 2017, 03:12:05 pm »
Windows ME is almost universally considered the worst Windows ever. I don't know why anyone would even want it. Does it actually require activation? I thought that started with XP. Can you even get any kind of updates for it at all from Microsoft?

That said, I'd never use some random copy of a disk or iso to install any OS. If you really want this ME, try to find a genuine original disk.

100% agree. WHY would ANYONE want 'WIN ME' on their system  :scared:
From what I remember ME does not use on line activation or checking (same quality as hitting the escape key on a password 'protected' screen bypasses it  ::)
I wouldn't worry at all about the license key. I would though, be worried about the contents - or additions to -  the iso that you may have downloaded. The key itself is totally irrelevant.
Get a copy of WIN 7 installed if possible. It is still the best OS MS ever made. PM me if you want a clean, original XP, Win 7 or 8.1 ISO.
 

Online rdl

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #10 on: December 18, 2017, 03:17:16 pm »
Reading some of the comments about Windows ME at Amazon, I can see how it might be wanted by some people such as collectors and for retro gaming. It does have a number of good points. One comment there in particular stated it definitely does not require activation (that being one of the good points).
 

Offline Ampera

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2017, 03:25:29 pm »
Reading some of the comments about Windows ME at Amazon, I can see how it might be wanted by some people such as collectors and for retro gaming. It does have a number of good points. One comment there in particular stated it definitely does not require activation (that being one of the good points).

Windows98SE is the best option for legacy gaming. It does everything WindowsME does, and doesn't catch fire on the daily.
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Offline Freelander

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #12 on: December 18, 2017, 03:29:32 pm »
Reading some of the comments about Windows ME at Amazon, I can see how it might be wanted by some people such as collectors and for retro gaming. It does have a number of good points. One comment there in particular stated it definitely does not require activation (that being one of the good points).

Windows98SE is the best option for legacy gaming. It does everything WindowsME does, and doesn't catch fire on the daily.
:-+
100% correct.
 
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Offline Ampera

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #13 on: December 18, 2017, 03:33:18 pm »
Reading some of the comments about Windows ME at Amazon, I can see how it might be wanted by some people such as collectors and for retro gaming. It does have a number of good points. One comment there in particular stated it definitely does not require activation (that being one of the good points).

Windows98SE is the best option for legacy gaming. It does everything WindowsME does, and doesn't catch fire on the daily.
:-+
100% correct.

I do happen to love Windows 2000, as I still believe it is the best (or least shit) Windows operating system ever released.
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Offline Freelander

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #14 on: December 18, 2017, 03:45:54 pm »
Reading some of the comments about Windows ME at Amazon, I can see how it might be wanted by some people such as collectors and for retro gaming. It does have a number of good points. One comment there in particular stated it definitely does not require activation (that being one of the good points).

Windows98SE is the best option for legacy gaming. It does everything WindowsME does, and doesn't catch fire on the daily.
:-+
100% correct.

I do happen to love Windows 2000, as I still believe it is the best (or least shit) Windows operating system ever released.
Win 2k was always a good bit of kit.
The biggest issue nowadays is the lack of driver support. It runs a far more convoluted HAL and causes major issues with later driver releases. This is not an issue if the system / hardware remains static, but  can be a huge hurdle if hardware is updated. Often it is simply no possible to get a driver that will function.
Shame really.
I must confess that 7 is my personal favourite. Win 10 I wouldnt give house room to. Pah -  :wtf: :rant: - total sack of.... :o
 

Offline Ampera

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #15 on: December 18, 2017, 03:51:22 pm »
I run Windows Server 2016 which has turned out to live in the spirit of Windows 2000 and the rest of the pre-XP NT series. It has a lot less fluff, the Windows Store isn't included, Cortana is nowhere to be seen, there are no forced updates, and it runs fast and minimally.

It is however massively expensive to anybody who isn't part of a Microsoft program like Imagine or MSDN.
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Offline Freelander

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2017, 04:27:13 pm »
I run Windows Server 2016 which has turned out to live in the spirit of Windows 2000 and the rest of the pre-XP NT series. It has a lot less fluff, the Windows Store isn't included, Cortana is nowhere to be seen, there are no forced updates, and it runs fast and minimally.

It is however massively expensive to anybody who isn't part of a Microsoft program like Imagine or MSDN.
I was an MCSE with NT4 as 2 of my 6 exams. MSDN - at that time - was included and we had it free at a later stage due to the volume of licenses. Shame I don't have it now. I must admit I run 8.1 on the laptop I am using at the moment. It has all the crap removed and uses Start 8 instead of the built in excuse for a menu. ALL the crappy 'modern' UI has been removed as much as possible. It actually is very good. If only microshaft would go back to a sensible version of windoze and not a spyware factory.
 

Offline edy

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #17 on: December 18, 2017, 06:09:27 pm »
If you do a Google IMAGE search for Windows License stickers (or even look at photos of people selling their laptops on Kijiji or whatever) you can find a whole bunch of valid license keys. As long as they are not "mass copied" serials, the Windows Activation Server will probably not red-flag them. Obviously this is not a nice thing to do, because some poor chap who actually bought the system may have a problem down the road (although who is using WinME anymore?). Best to ask your friends so you don't screw over some anonymous person. This is a common ploy for people running WinXP Mode in a VM if they don't have their old machines around, as you need to validate WinXP Mode or it expires in 30 days.

Same goes for Apple Serial numbers, if you are running MacOS in a VirtualBox, you can supply it a serial number (which you can check the validity of on Apple's warranty page in the link below) and then use a VirtualBox command-line parameter to set the serial number reported to the OS in the virtual machine... That will allow it to properly register some of the accounts like Apple ID for AppStore and so on (without a valid serial, VirtualBox reports it as "0" and more things in MacOS will fail):

https://checkcoverage.apple.com/ca/en/

Again, there are many photos on Google Images of people's Mac's which can be tested using the above link. However, the link will only let you check a limited number per day and then flag your IP. If you are going to do this, again I would recommend you ask a buddy with an iMac to let you use theirs with the VM, otherwise you may screw over somebody out their with their actual Apple machine from being able to use their machine. I'm also not sure how "tied in" the Apple Serial is to the MacOS services and whether Apple keeps tabs on how many instances of the OS are booted simultaneously and reporting the same serial.

Obviously, it should be impossible to have more than 1 machine (uniquely identified by the serial) running MacOS at the same time. If you have a bunch of internet-connected machines all running MacOS, a real one and then a bunch of VM's all faking the same serial, and they are reporting to some Apple Server in the background.... Apple would know. Whether that is happening, and whether Apple cares or does anything about it is another story. But there are plenty of people running "Hackintoshes" and using exactly this method to run their MacOS on those machines.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2017, 06:12:19 pm by edy »
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Offline amspire

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2017, 08:11:55 pm »
I run Windows Server 2016 which has turned out to live in the spirit of Windows 2000 and the rest of the pre-XP NT series. It has a lot less fluff, the Windows Store isn't included, Cortana is nowhere to be seen, there are no forced updates, and it runs fast and minimally.

It is however massively expensive to anybody who isn't part of a Microsoft program like Imagine or MSDN.
I was an MCSE with NT4 as 2 of my 6 exams. MSDN - at that time - was included and we had it free at a later stage due to the volume of licenses. Shame I don't have it now. I must admit I run 8.1 on the laptop I am using at the moment. It has all the crap removed and uses Start 8 instead of the built in excuse for a menu. ALL the crappy 'modern' UI has been removed as much as possible. It actually is very good. If only microshaft would go back to a sensible version of windoze and not a spyware factory.
I have a NT4 VM that I use to run old 16 bit programs that don't run on any current Windows anymore - like the ICT PEEL18CV8  programming tool WINPLACE. NT4  was much more solid then Win95/98/ME, and very small (a non-upgraded NT4 only uses 22MBytes of RAM for the operating system) but it lacks USB2 and DirectX. One of the main reason I chose it is that I happen to have about 16 unopened licenses. If you try and run anything modern, there are now always missing DLL issues. Anyone want a Win NT4 License?

Win8.1 is my main O/S and with the right settings and as much Metro stripped out as possible, it is my favourite Windows version, and it will be supported for 3 years longer then Win7 (Jan 2023). Keeping the Windows10-like rubbish updates out of it is a hassle.

Interestingly, Microsoft has already dropped security updates for the first two releases of Windows 10 -  so you have to do the updates. Windows 10 is meant to loose mainstream support Oct 2020 and extended support October 2025 (33 months more life then Win8.1).

What I guess this means is that after 2020, Microsoft can change to a service based contract for Windows if they choose to - $10 a month or something similar. That is why they have to get everyone hooked on using their free upgrade to Windows 10.
 

Online Mr. Scram

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #19 on: December 18, 2017, 08:23:51 pm »
I don't think Windows 10 will lose support. Windows 10 isn't the product any more, it's the platform that allows them to sell other products. That's why they want everyone to upgrade. The Windows 10 deadline simply gets extended every time a new major version is released.
 

Offline amspire

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #20 on: December 18, 2017, 08:43:05 pm »
I don't think Windows 10 will lose support. Windows 10 isn't the product any more, it's the platform that allows them to sell other products. That's why they want everyone to upgrade. The Windows 10 deadline simply gets extended every time a new major version is released.
No, it doesn't. Yes, each release has its own life and so that latest 1709 will have mainstream support to March 2019 (tentatively) but I think the end of life for Windows 10 has never changed. It has always been 2025 and it still is. My understanding all along since Windows 10 was released is that Microsoft want to go to a subscription product called just "Windows". The current Windows 10 is a transitional product.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2017, 09:00:40 pm by amspire »
 

Online Mr. Scram

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #21 on: December 18, 2017, 09:48:42 pm »
No, it doesn't. Yes, each release has its own life and so that latest 1709 will have mainstream support to March 2019 (tentatively) but I think the end of life for Windows 10 has never changed. It has always been 2025 and it still is. My understanding all along since Windows 10 was released is that Microsoft want to go to a subscription product called just "Windows". The current Windows 10 is a transitional product.
Well, Microsoft has been calling Windows 10 "the last version of Windows", so it's not unreasonable to assume support will ultimately be extended. Whatever Microsoft plans to do in the long run isn't clear, but it's quite possible that Microsoft doesn't know yet either.

However, it would surprise me if Windows becomes subscription based. Not because I would put it beyond Microsoft, but because they need it as a platform to sell their other services. They need everyone aboard the Windows train for their conversion to SaaS to work and having people pay for using Windows might cause them to walk away. A Free tp Play style model makes more sense. Get the base software free, pay for all the extras.
 

Offline amspire

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #22 on: December 18, 2017, 10:20:24 pm »
No, it doesn't. Yes, each release has its own life and so that latest 1709 will have mainstream support to March 2019 (tentatively) but I think the end of life for Windows 10 has never changed. It has always been 2025 and it still is. My understanding all along since Windows 10 was released is that Microsoft want to go to a subscription product called just "Windows". The current Windows 10 is a transitional product.
Well, Microsoft has been calling Windows 10 "the last version of Windows", so it's not unreasonable to assume support will ultimately be extended.
Microsoft are very happy when people have impressions like that even when they have been very firm on a 10 year life for Windows 10. What I have always understood by that "Last Version" comment is that they want to move to a versionless continuously updated Windows called just "Windows". When Windows 10 mainstream support stops in 2020, they are unlikely to release any more Windows 10's or a Windows 11.
 

Online Mr. Scram

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #23 on: December 18, 2017, 10:31:12 pm »
Microsoft are very happy when people have impressions like that even when they have been very firm on a 10 year life for Windows 10. What I have always understood by that "Last Version" comment is that they want to move to a versionless continuously updated Windows called just "Windows". When Windows 10 mainstream support stops in 2020, they are unlikely to release any more Windows 10's or a Windows 11.
That would be a next version of versionless Windows, even though that might sound odd, so that doesn't really jive with the statement. It would make Windows 10 the second to last Windows version ever.

Regardless, it would be foolish to think Microsoft doesn't take into account how people react to various developments and introduced products. It's likely Microsoft adjusts and revises its plans as it goes along. Even 3 or 5 years is an eternity in software development.
 

Online rdl

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Re: Windows key shows up in Google search
« Reply #24 on: December 18, 2017, 10:45:24 pm »
Unless the landscape changes drastically, I would not be surprised if the next Windows is versionless with rolling updates. I expect it will be subscription based with an entry level plan that is "free" (will cost you something besides money such as mandatory advertising), but anything beyond the bare basics may require real money.
 


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