“We will provide a mechanism for non-genuine Windows 10 PC devices to ‘get genuine’ via the new Windows Store, whether they are upgraded versions of Windows or purchased,” a Microsoft spokesperson told Venture Beat back in March.
According to industry experts, use of pirated software, including Non-Genuine Windows, results in a higher risk of malware, fraud (identity theft, credit card theft, etc), public exposure of your personal information, and a higher risk for poor performance or feature malfunctions.
The Windows 7 anti-piracy update which pirates were fearing is now live getting distributed as KB971033 via Windows Update, the Windows Activation Technologies (WAT) update is tagged important and features detection of more then 70 known Windows 7 activation hacks and cracks informing users of their genuine copy status taking actions if usage of piracy is detected.
Update: We’ve confirmed with a source close to Microsoft that devices which the company detects as non-genuine will not be offered the free upgrade to Windows 10.
The company also gave us a generic boilerplate statement.
“We believe genuine Windows is the best Windows,” a Microsoft spokesperson told Venture Beat.
“Genuine Windows is published by Microsoft, properly licensed, and supported by Microsoft or a trusted partner.
This is an unexpected step from Microsoft that has been thinking of the long term prospects.
Today Microsoft announced that earlier than expected October launch.
That part isn’t a huge surprise — Microsoft did say pirates would be able to get Windows 10 — but the fact that Windows 10 is showing as “activated” is eyebrow-raising: To be clear, these users are claiming all they did was run the “Get Windows 10” app.
They are not running cracks after the upgrade (although some are perfectly happy to take that route instead).
In another interesting development, Microsoft is partnering with Xiaomi to test ROM based software to that the upgrade to Windows 10 will not make the Windows genuine.