Is it legit?

Discussion in 'Windows 7 Help and Support' started by prroots, Mar 14, 2010.

  1. prroots

    prroots Well-Known Member

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    I have noticed many online auctions for low cost keys for Windows 7. They offer the key but not the software itself. Of course, once you have the software, the key can be used to install Windows 7 on other computers. Is this legit? I'm suspecting that it's some kind of volume OEM key and the sellers are abusing the intent. Here is one example I discovered today:
    Windows 7 Professional RETAIL 100% Geniune 32/64bit on eBid.net United States
     
  2. Mike

    Mike Windows Forum Admin
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    If the key passes genuine validation, then it is a legitimate product key. But the way in which the merchant or vendor obtained the key may or may not be legitimate. This is a concern you should have when trying to purchase product keys online. Retailers like Amazon.com will not sell you volume license keys, but will sell you "Anytime Upgrade" packages. You should look into this with extreme caution. It may very well be that the key is legit, but that the means of providing the key violates Microsoft's license agreement. If this is the case, the key itself could become blocked in the future if it is found to be distributed under illegal means. This can be from theft, from distributing MSDN or TechNet keys, or obtaining leaked keys. White collar crime is believed to occur more than regular street crime. There is no way you are going to find a legitimate copy of Windows 7 for $15.00 at this time. I would advise against it, as there is 1) no way to determine if the key will even work and 2) no way to determine if you are buying a stolen good.
     
  3. Mike

    Mike Windows Forum Admin
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  4. prroots

    prroots Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the comprehensive reply. That's basically what I was thinking although I didn't know any details about how the keys may be obtained in an illegal way from Microsoft
     
  5. Mitchell_A

    Mitchell_A Excellent Member

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    Let's just support Micro$oft and go out and buy a non-oem genuine copy of Windows 7.
    $15 for Windows 7 sounds to me like A free car with gas for life,
     
  6. prroots

    prroots Well-Known Member

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    My goal was to try to understand how they could afford to sell them for that price. Obviously, they have a source that costs them less than $15. Does anyone know what it costs to purchase just the key from a legitimate source. This situation might arise if someone was the legitimate owner, but lost the product key.

    Personally, I'm always looking for a deal. In this case I have no idea what a good deal would be that's legitimate. I suppose if I was in the business I would know. It would be interesting to hear what the value of a Windows 7 key would be from a legitimate, discount source. I would like to help upgrade several friends and relatives to Windows 7 from Vista and I know they will resist having to pay the full retail price.
     
  7. Mitchell_A

    Mitchell_A Excellent Member

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    Could be an MSDN key, which comes from a subscription but is unlimited.
     
  8. prroots

    prroots Well-Known Member

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  9. Mitchell_A

    Mitchell_A Excellent Member

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    ** Part of the reason they're selling these so cheap is because they do not come with the Windows 7 installation disk.
     
  10. Mitchell_A

    Mitchell_A Excellent Member

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    So this means you'd have to borrow the installation media from a friend, or risk downloading a copy from a torrent site, which could be either infected with malware, already have an activation crack or maybe your ISP is watching what your doing and the FBI will show up at your house.

    It's only $40, right?
     
  11. prroots

    prroots Well-Known Member

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    Yes, but is the source legit or not?
     
  12. Mitchell_A

    Mitchell_A Excellent Member

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    There's only one way to find out.
     
  13. Mike

    Mike Windows Forum Admin
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    Chances are the source is not legitimate and the seller is using multiple MSDN/TechNet accounts, access to stolen software, or some other means to sell it at $15. He may be buying them in bulk from a university or non-profit organization that has a deal with Microsoft. There is no telling. But the source does not sound legitimate. It sounds like the source has procured stolen merchandise or violated their EULA. Even if you are a Microsoft Partner certified to resell the software, I am pretty sure there are guidelines you must follow about how you price the software.
     
  14. lorenkjr1

    lorenkjr1 Honorable Member

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    My question would be what one does if they need to reactivate the key? That may not be as easy as it sounds. Normal procedure with the need to reactivate with OEM is like you get 5 installs and then you have to phone Microsoft. Then the question is what Microsoft will do. Normally on Windows 7 you call and eventually you speak to someone who will give you a new key. But, what happens with this cheap stuff, I have not heard. I get lots of ads for the really cheap OEM software online. So far, I have stayed real clear of it and intend to continue doing just that until I get enough information that warrants trying it.
     
  15. Digerati

    Digerati Fantastic Member
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    I don't know about that. It only costs less than $2 to make a disk. And the image file can be downloaded from MS. They sell these so cheap because they know people will buy them.

    I say if it sounds too good to be true... it probably is.

    There are legitimate ways to obtain the image files and there are legitimate ways to obtain the keys free, or next to nothing. It is what happens with the keys afterwards that determines the legitimacy. If an organization buys from Microsoft a corporate or institutional volume discounted license then only uses a few keys, selling the remaining keys outside the organization (for profit or not) may violate the terms of the license.

    This could be no different from buying a retail copy of Windows that was shoplifted from Best Buy. Or a whole crate off a loading dock. Legitimate disks, legitimate keys, but still stolen. Newegg, who usually has very competitive prices, sells the 30-key (one disk) OEM version of Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium (License and Media) for $3,231 - or $107.70 per copy. So prices much less than that raises red flags for me.

    I am not sure I would ever get enough convincing information, unless it came from Microsoft itself.

    It is important to remind ourselves that stealing is stealing, and totally unnecessary when it comes to computer software because there are many fully capable and ***FREE*** alternatives to choose from.
     
  16. prroots

    prroots Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the info. I especially like your quantitative NewEgg.com comparison since that would seem to set a floor on the price of truly legitimate keys. I suspect these very cheap keys are legitimate, but being sold in a way that violates the MS license. I say that because the seller feedback that I have seen is often 100% so obviously the buyer's are able to activate and use the software without problems although that doesn't guarantee that MS will not blacklist them at some point in the future. Do you agree?
    Pete
     
  17. Digerati

    Digerati Fantastic Member
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    Completely.
     

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