October 21, 2008

Really, Microsoft?

Posted in Uncategorized at 8:41 pm by Ian

So, I just had to re-activate Windows, after installing it on my new computer and then changing some hardware. The removal of a hard drive is apparently enough to trigger the “significant hardware changes” clause.

According to the popup, I couldn’t just reactivate over the internet. I had to call in and talk to someone. I’ve done this before, and it always felt a little silly. They ask you a few questions and read you a long code to key in. It all feels vaguely ineffectual.

But, this time, I never spoke to a person. No. I had to read off a 45 digit key to a voice recognition computer, then receive a similar one and type it in. Rather than send some bits over the internet, We went through the circuitous bits->voice->telephone->computer->telephone->ear->fingers route. Apparently, the entire purpose of this process is simply to waste my time.

I wonder if anyone is working on an automated system to interface with Microsoft’s automated system and make it easier to activate?



  1. Philip Vegdahl said,

    I think you can find a patch for that problem at http://www.ubuntu.com.

  2. Ian said,

    I could just leave it unplugged, too. Both solutions would be equally adequate for my plan of watching movies on Netflix online.

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