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Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

Steve
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Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

Quote
Microsoft is to sue UK electronics retailer Comet for making tens of thousands of allegedly unauthorised CDs for its Windows operating system and selling them to customers.
The US computing giant has issued proceedings against Comet for allegedly creating more than 94,000 counterfeit "recovery discs" for its Windows Vista and Windows XP operating systems and selling them to customers.
But the retailer says it will contest Microsoft's claim, saying that it acted in the interests of consumers because Microsoft had stopped supplying the recovery discs with new computers.
The CDs were sold to Comet customers who had bought PCs and laptops that come pre-loaded with Windows, allowing them to rebuild the operating system in the event of a serious crash.

More here...http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2012/jan/04/microsoft-sue-comet-windows-discs?newsfeed=true
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26 REPLIES
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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

On the face of it I'm with Comet on this one.
If Microsoft wins it could tip Comet over the brink into oblivion.

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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

If I was running Comet, I'd be starting an in-store campaign where the the PC's with pre-loaded windows (and no recovery disk) are labelled with a warning notice. "If your disk becomes corrupted, you'll have to buy a full copy of Windows" noting that recovery by Comet will cost £50.  In addition I'd offer PC's with free pre-loaded Ubuntu and recovery disks with a large notice to that effect. Couple it with leaflets about Google Docs and Open Office. Then I'd invite the local Microsoft Regional manager to an event with a few journalists where the change of policy is announced.
I had a pre-loaded copy of Windows Vista on this PC, it got corrupted and only quick answer was to buy a new copy in MS Vista, as some of the business apps rely on MS Windows, but I'm increasingly using Ubuntu, Open Office and Google docs... all free of cost and much fewer problems.
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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

Quote from: AlaricAdair
I had a pre-loaded copy of Windows Vista on this PC, it got corrupted and only quick answer was to buy a new copy in MS Vista,

As someone who fixes computers and has copies of all the common Windows installation discs I feel I should point out that buying a new copy was not the 'only quick answer' and it certainly wasn't the cheapest answer in my neck of the woods.
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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

Quote from: ReedRichards
I feel I should point out that buying a new copy was not the 'only quick answer' and it certainly wasn't the cheapest answer in my neck of the woods.

But it may have been the only answer that didn't breach the license terms of Microsoft that AA agreed to when setting the computer up initially.
I too fix computers and have a selection of (genuine) installation CD's and DVD's; I am (as a sometime Microsoft Licensing expert) EXTREMELY careful as to when I use them to ensure it is valid. Cool
As for Comet's position I'm in 2 minds on this. I actually think BOTH M$ and Comet are wrong. M$ for not supplying the disks in the first place (or at least a low-cost option available both at initial purchase and later) and Comet for turning it into a profit-making "opportunity" (as opposed to solving it another way, ideally for everyone).
MrT
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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

9 months ago, I bought a Dell Desktop and paid extra for an Operating System Reinstallation DVD for Windows 7.
Are Dell breaking MS law as well?
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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

Dell - probably not.
That wil almost ceratinly be part of their OEM deal with M$, as will an agreed "revenue split"  Lips are sealed
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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

Quote from: HPsauce
I too fix computers and have a selection of (genuine) installation CD's and DVD's; I am (as a sometime Microsoft Licensing expert) EXTREMELY careful as to when I use them to ensure it is valid.

I cannot see that running a single copy of the version of Windows that was supplied with your computer using the product key on the COA that was supplied with your computer can POSSIBLY contravene a Microsoft licencing agreement .  On the other hand, buying a new Vista disc and using the product key that came with it is very likely to contravene the agreement because many people would buy an OEM or Upgrade disc to save money.
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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

Quote from: ReedRichards
I cannot see that running a single copy of the version of Windows that was supplied with your computer using the product key on the COA that was supplied with your computer can POSSIBLY contravene a Microsoft licencing agreement .  

Well, I can.  Cry
You (very) probably haven't read as many M$ licensing agreements as I have and the licensing/use/copying etc. restrictions that can apply in various circumstances.
And how is "version" defined when, for example, the pre-installed copy on a hard disk is the result of a "cloning" process using tools that are just not available to the likes of you and me.  Wink
That said, what action is "reasonable" in any particular situation and "likely" to result in a response from M$ are separate issues entirely.  Lips are sealed
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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

Quote from: MrT
9 months ago, I bought a Dell Desktop and paid extra for an Operating System Reinstallation DVD for Windows 7.
Are Dell breaking MS law as well?
The point is you had to pay for an operating system Reinstallation DVD for Windows 7 but if you have already paid for the OS why should you have to pay for a reinstallation DVD.
Every copy of windows should include a Reinstallation CD for the specific computer it was sold with, after all Windows is not particularly cheap.
MrT
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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

With the Dell computer, you can create your own Recovery  disc. I chose to pay a fiver and have Dell do it for me. Smiley
laura
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Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

maybe if comet had only charged people a nominal amount microsoft couldn't have complained, after all if people already have a computer with the OS on it, they have already paid for the licence.
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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

Yeah, maybe they have shot themselves in the foot....and with a very large cannon too.

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CX
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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

Would this be the same operating system installers that were (and still are) on Microsoft's "authorised reseller"'s servers as ISO images, without requiring any kind of authentication? The discs are worthless without the key in any case - you effectively get a trial version (the same as what Microsoft used to give away in the 2000 and XP era).
Any idea how much Comet were charging for the discs?
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Re: Microsoft sues Comet over OS disk sales

Quote from: CX23882
Any idea how much Comet were charging for the discs?

The Guardian report (linked to above  Wink ) says £14.99 which seems excessive...... Roll eyes