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Using Piracy To Dominate An Industry?

So about a week ago Microsoft’s CEO put the blame for slow Vista sales on software pirates. While the validity of that claim is quite questionable (dare I say wrong) considering the reaction I read on the Internet about it. It did make me think about something interesting. Microsoft in a way owes a lot of its success to people who pirated their software back in the 90s.

Anyone remember the trick from the mid 90s with Microsoft CD keys where you could just enter in all 1s and the installer would accept it? That security hole stayed in their installers for quite a while, even after it was a known work around. Which if you think about it is somewhat interesting. This trick worked on more than just Windows, Office 95 and 97 have this hole in their installers. And that was back when there was true competition to Microsoft Office. However maybe making it easier to pirate helped their market share? If you need a word processor, and a friend says how great Office 95 is and loans you their disk and it was easy to pirate, you wouldn't go out and potentially buy that competing product now would you?

Now days it is a much different ball game with product activations and such but people still pirate their software, it just makes it much harder for the average user. And if they did turn a blind eye to pirating back then, they pretty much used it to help them.

Posted on: Feb 26, 2007 at 10:48 am - (0) comments.

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