Microsoft plot to disable Windows installations

ZDNet reports that Windows Genuine Advantage, Microsoft's new anti-piracy utility, might become compulosory, and lead to Windows on unlicensed PCs being rendered useless. A Microsoft customer service representative was quoted as saying "in [USA's] fall, having the latest WGA will become mandatory and if its not installed, Windows will give a 30 day warning and when the 30 days is up and WGA isn't installed, Windows will stop working, so you might as well install WGA now." While WGA is targeted at unlicensed copies, there have been reports that shrink-wrapped copies have failed installation and Microsoft's only suggestion has been 'buy another box, at your own expense'. No such kill switch has been reported in any Open Source operating system. Update: Microsoft have denied the speculation that they planned to cripple copies of Windows XP for users who did not install WGA. They have, however, dealt a blow to corporate IT staff, by announcing that volume licenses of Windows will require activation in Windows Vista.