Ed Bott: Is Microsoft about to release a Windows” Kill” Switch?

Ed Bott is wondering about this and so am I. It looks like Microsoft might go a step further with their Windows Genuine Advantage program and bascially shut down Windows if it isn’t recognized as the genuine article.

Guess what? WGA might be on the verge of getting even messier. In fact, one report claims WGA is about to become a Windows “kill switch” – and when I asked Microsoft for an on-the-record response, they refused to deny it


I’m not concerned about Microsoft’s motives to thwart piracy here. Buy the software and be done with it. But like Ed Bott, I think this causes problems when this is forced on users who would prefer to update their systems manually instead of on Microsoft’s schedule. Ed chronicles a list of problems some users have already experienced with WGA. In our small shop, where I’m the chief cook, bottle washer, and IT guy, I don’t let any of our comptuers update automatically, instead going the manual route. If nothing else to hang on to my own sanity when patches roll around during a hectic time here. We suffered a setback a few Patch Tuesdays ago when we lost some functionality on our Box Office computer until Microsoft later pushed out a patch to the patch.

Ed thinks it could get messy. If this comes to pass, I know it will.