"Vista activation can be bypassed"

Here is the text from the following link:

Link on bypassing Vista Activation

and another link which confirms it:


Windows Vista can be run for at least a year without being activated, according to Windows expert Brian Livingston. A single change to Vista’s registry lets users put off the operating system’s product activation requirement by an additional eight times, according to Livingston, who publishes the Windows Secret newsletter. This is five times over the three disclosed last month by him.
In an article,
Livingston had revealed earlier that a one-line command lets users postpone Vista activation by up to three times. Since V/photo.cms?msid=1772183ista comes with initial 30-day grace period. An extension of additional three times means that users could run Vista for as long as 120 days before they are required to activate the OS. According to him, the one-line command can enable even novices postpone the product’s activation deadline. In fact, Livingston said, with more research it may even be possible to find a way to postpone activation indefinitely.
Microsoft had seemingly stayed unconcerned by Livingston’s last month disclosure and flatly stated that using it would not violate the Vista End User License Agreement (EULA), this time the company has labeled the registry change as a “hack.”

However,Livingstonn refutes the “hack” charge, saying, “This isn’t a hacker exploit. It doesn’t require any tools or utilities whatsoever.” He also cites that Microsoft has even documented the Registry key, although obtusely, on its Technet site.

Here’s a step-by-step guide into Livingston’s finding:

  • Step 1: While running a copy of Windows Vista that hasn’t yet been activated, click the Start button, type regedit into the Search box, then press Enter to launch the Registry Editor.
  • Step 2: Explore down to the following Registry key:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SOFTWARE \ Microsoft \ Windows NT \ CurrentVersion \ SL
  • Step 3: Right-click the Registry key named SkipRearm and click Edit. The default is a Dword (a double word or 4 bytes) with a hex value of 00000000. Change this value to any positive integer, such as 00000001, save the change, and close the Registry Editor.
  • Step 4: Start a command prompt with administrative rights. The fastest way to do this is to click the Start button, enter cmd in the Search box, then press Ctrl+Shift+Enter. If you’re asked for a network username and password, provide the ones that log you into your domain. You may be asked to approve a User Account Control prompt and to provide an administrator password.
  • Step 5: Type one of the following two commands and press Enter:slmgr –rearm or rundll32 slc.dll,SLReArmWindows
    Either command uses Vista’s built-in Software Licensing Manager (SLMGR) to push the activation deadline out to 30 days after the command is run. Changing SkipRearm from 0 to 1 allows SLMGR to do this an indefinite number of times. Running either command initializes the value of SkipRearm back to 0.
  • Step 6: Reboot the PC to make the postponement take effect. (After you log in, if you like, you can open a command prompt and run the command slmgr -xpr to see Vista’s new expiration date and time.)
  • Step 7: To extend the activation deadline of Vista indefinitely, repeat steps 1 through 6 as necessary. Livingston’s also got a caveat for the prospective Vista buyers, “If you happen to buy a Vista PC from a little-known seller, and the price was too good to be true, use Vista’s search function to look for the string SkipRearm in files. You may discover that your “bargain” computer will mysteriously start demanding activation in a year or two — but your product key won’t be valid.”

March 16, 2007 · Rahul Desai · No Comments
Posted in: General

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