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Re: Linux Developers Receive Sentinel Keys

In comp.os.linux.advocacy, Peter Köhlmann
on Mon, 16 Oct 2006 23:47:43 +0200
> Larry Qualig wrote:
>> Roy Schestowitz wrote:
>>> SafeNet Sentinel Hardware Keys for Linux
>>> ,----[ Quote ]
>>> | SafeNet has announced the release of Sentinel Hardware Keys for
>>> | Linux platforms, allowing software developers in the Linux
>>> | community to protect 32-bit software applications from piracy
>>> | and implement flexible licensing models.
>>> `----
>>> http://www.it-observer.com/news.php?id=6898
>> Hmmmm.... so here we see the Linux equivalent of WGA. Copy protection
>> that's being used to ensure that people don't illegally copy (read -
>> pirate) software. Or to paraphrase many other posts... Linux software
>> that "treats customers as if they were theives."
>> If done on Windows it's immoral and insulting to the user who bought a
>> legit copy of the app. But now this is somehow a positive "benefit"
>> because it's being done on Linux. Put this in the same category as
>> "RedHat phones home" but that's now a positive thing too.
> So according to you is a "hardware key" the equivalent to WGA
> Nice that we cleared that up

[assuming http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_Genuine_Advantage ]

WGA appears to be a mixture of technology and procedure.
Briefly put, various spots in the OS/system/libraries
will check using ActiveX whether a license key matches
something, probably a checksum of a series of files in
the system.  If this check fails, the system will notify
the user and allow him to contact a Microsoft site for
more instructions; the user is expected to dutifully
contact the site.  If the site lets him in, fine -- but
that can only happen once, as I understand it; he may have
to contact a live operator, and possibly send his disc in
for validation, a second time.

Where is the evil in this?  Good question.

There are three options if the website disallows your request,

- Contact your reseller
- Obtain Genuine Software
- Turn on Automatic Updates

If Microsoft is using certificates it is worth noting that these
certificates will expire (all certificates do, though there are
issues as to how long they're good for).  So the updates are
definitely a part of WGA.

It is also worth noting that any circumvention of this
copy protection scheme is inherently illegal, thanks to
US Public Law 105-304, better known as the Digital Millennium
Copyright Act of 1998.

Fortunately, the installation of Linux is not a circumvention. :-)

#191, ewill3@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Useless C++ Programming Idea #23291:
void f(item *p) { if(p != 0) delete p; }

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