Google Answers Logo
View Question
Q: Buying cheap software ( Answered,   2 Comments )
Subject: Buying cheap software
Category: Computers > Software
Asked by: emilio450-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 01 Jan 2005 07:23 PST
Expires: 31 Jan 2005 07:23 PST
Question ID: 449991
When buying a software (Xp Pro) I have a message: You will not be able
to register this software with the manufacturer. What does this mean 
? I'm buying softare from OEM cd shop. Are they a reliable source. Can
they be thrusted ?
Subject: Re: Buying cheap software
Answered By: siliconsamurai-ga on 29 Jan 2005 07:19 PST
Hi, thank you for submitting your question to Answers.Google, I hope I
can provide the information you are seeking.

What you are doing is a violation of intellectual property laws in
some countries. It is certainly a civil contract violation for the
people selling it to you and possibly also a criminal act, depending
on a lot of details.

If you are doing this on a business computer you are placing your job
at risk and your company at risk for some serious consequences as
Microsoft and other members of the ?software police,? more accurately,
the Business Software Alliance ( is becoming ever more
proactive in pursuit of software pirates.

There has recently been a major crackdown on this practice and you
should be aware that when companies or individuals are caught doing
something wrong they will often plea bargain. In this instance they
may offer the real vendors of the software a list of the people who
have purchased the OEM copies without license.

Make no mistake, you are running unlicensed software which is a
copyright violation.

On January 26, 2005, Microsoft announced that it will severely
restrict updates for pirated software, this will include restrictions
on highly-critical security updates.;jsessionid=SKCY3YXWBG1SSQSNDBESKHA?articleId=57703839

Microsoft will almost certainly phase out even critical security
updates for systems running unregistered pirated software and the
company update pages will include code which queries a system to check
for pirated copies.

Regarding your question ?What does this mean?? The short answer is
that they are selling you software which can never be legally updated
or supported by the original vendor such as Microsoft. They are also
selling you software which they have no right to sell because they
don?t have a license that permits them to do so.

As for ?an OEM CD shop? there is no such thing if you are thinking of
a legitimate business. OEM software is only permitted to be sold
installed on a single, specific computer. The CDs you are getting are
the backup or re-install disks which are provided to computer buyers
so they can repair damaged software on their machines.

As for your question ?Can they be trusted?? Well, that?s a decision
for you to make but since you know they are already engaged in either
illegal or at a minimum highly unethical practices, you need to
consider whether you can really trust them to deliver clean,
malware-free, and current software.

This is somewhat similar to buying black market medicine, only for your computer.

Even if a site is reasonably legitimate today, that is, they deliver
clean, usable if pirated software, they may decide to make money
quickly as they feel the pressure from software vendors. At that time
they might sell their business to one of the operations which is
already running software scams, or simply begin to slip spyware into
the disks they are selling.

I hope I have provided you with something to think about besides the
mere fact that what you and the people you buy from are doing
something immoral and possibly illegal. There are serious fines being
levied against companies found to have unlicensed software on their
computers, and, in addition, I think I have shown that there can be
many personal consequences.
Although you didn?t specifically ask, if you are interested in
legitimate ways to purchase less expensive commercial software, the
simplest way is to purchase sealed packages containing older versions
of the program. These are perfectly legal and legitimate copies which
can normally be registered, although support may be fading if they are
too old. Since you get absolutely no support for the OEM software you
now purchase, that shouldn?t be a major concern.

To learn if an ?OEM? vendor is legitimate, you can contact Microsoft.
Even if the software isn?t from Microsoft you can bet that the seller
is also marketing Microsoft programs.


Use the Microsoft Anti-Piracy Hotline at (800) RU-LEGIT.

Google search term: OEM software piracy

For further information see: knowledgebase/index.cfm?id=tn_15280

Thank you again for turning to Answers.Google for help. I hope you can
see that there are actual dangers to you in using pirated software and
that you will consider your position carefully.

To repeat, ignoring the legal consequences, the dangers include,
risking your credit card or bank information with shady operators; not
being able to update or obtain support for the software; and risking
having spyware or viruses planted on your system.
Subject: Re: Buying cheap software
From: pinkfreud-ga on 01 Jan 2005 08:53 PST
"Another emerging piracy scheme is the so-called OEM sites, which also
sell cheap software copies with no packaging or product literature.

'Original equipment manufacturer' copies are the discs you get when
you buy a new computer--CD copies of the various software applications
already preloaded onto the machine.

Software publishers send these copies to computer distributors
expressly for distribution with new hardware. Kupferschmid says
distributors often end up with a surplus of these CDs, and some break
the copyright by selling the CDs either to other distributors or to
OEM sites.

By doing so, the OEM site is not overtly violating the criminal law,
but is clearly violating the OEM contract between the software
publisher and the hardware distributor. The contract stipulates the
OEM software is not to be sold independent of the hardware it's
installed on.",aid,116901,00.asp
Subject: Re: Buying cheap software
From: efn-ga on 01 Jan 2005 09:25 PST
You may be interested in this past answer and comments:

Important Disclaimer: Answers and comments provided on Google Answers are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Google does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. Please read carefully the Google Answers Terms of Service.

If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by emailing us at with the question ID listed above. Thank you.
Search Google Answers for
Google Answers  

Google Home - Answers FAQ - Terms of Service - Privacy Policy