Importance of Windows Vista product key
Any computer software product can be copied and installed
on more than one computer system. In order to avoid
that, a new concept came into light. Developers started
to protect the software which they developed, by using
some sort of mechanism. This gave rise to the development
of product keys. Let's know the importance of the Windows
Vista product key.
Difference between product key and CD-Keys
The product key was initially called as CD-Keys. It
contained a series of numbers. The setup or install
program of the product was prompting one to enter the
key. The key entered is compared with the product key
stored in the media such as floppy or CD-ROM. If the
product key is matched, then setup program continues
to copy and install the product files on to the computer.
Otherwise, setup program aborts. This verification process
resulted in the reduction of pirated softwares. But,
this process was not fully fool proof.
Role of Windows Vista Product Key
Once the product key of the product known to some persons,
they simply copied the product from CD-ROM to CD-ROM
and started installing the product. Some persons went
ahead and developed some cracking mechanisms to break
out the product key by some means. This caused again
huge revenue losses for the company which developed
the product. They all started thinking. It was Invention
of World Wide Web i.e. the Internet, has come to their
rescue, i.e. product key verification.
The product asks one to verify the product key in the
internet, after being installed. The user can continue
to use the product without verification, but, after
some days or some tries, the entire or some part of
the product is disabled. The user must verify the product,
to make it enabled again.
How does Windows Vista product key work?
Windows Vista verifies the product, through the internet,
hoping to reduce the pirates. However, it prompts for
the product key, in the first stage of the setup itself,
which is a good change compared to previous versions
of Windows family of operating systems. The product
key in Windows Vista is alphanumeric, means it can contain
both alphabets and numbers.
The length of the key is now fixed to 25 characters.
In windows vista, when entering the product key one
has to enter the hyphen character, whenever, it appears
in the certificate given with CD-ROMs. There is no separate
text box to enter it separately, as it was before. The
product key entered is verified against the product
key stored in the CD-ROM. After Windows Vista got installed,
the product verification tool looks for the internet
connection. If it is available, the product verification
tool sends the product key along with some information
about the computer to Microsoft verification web site
and gets it verified.
If the product is pirated, then Microsoft tells the
user that the product is not genuine. If the product
is genuine, then an activation code will be returned
back internally, and thus the product can be used now
on. If no internet connection is available, then one
need to call the Microsoft and get the activation code,
and provide the code, when asked. This process still
under first stage and Microsoft only warns to the user
about the pirated software. They may also take legal
action too in near future against the users, to fight
against pirated software.
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