Vista won't show fancy side to pirates
Windows Vista plans to offer you spiffy new graphics, as long as you're not a pirate.
With the new operating system, Microsoft is offering plenty of new graphics tricks, including translucent windows, animated flips between open programs and "live icons" that show a graphical representation of the file in question.
To get Aero graphics, you'll need to have a higher-end version of Vista and a system that meets some pretty arcane requirements, according to unofficial draft guidelines.
It's the latest salvo in Microsoft's efforts to crack down on people who use pirated versions of its OS. But before Vista will display its showiest side, known as Aero, it will run a check to make sure the software was properly purchased.
"Those who are not running genuine Windows will not be able to take advantage of the Windows Aero user experience," a Microsoft representative told CNET News.com on Wednesday.
The move is the latest salvo in Microsoft's broad attack on those who use unauthorized copies of its operating system. In the fall of 2004, Microsoft began testing the Windows Genuine Advantage program, designed to verify that a particular copy of Windows is legitimate.
At first an optional program, the piracy check eventually became mandatory for many types of Windows XP downloads, but was not required to run any aspect of the operating system itself. Microsoft has identified reducing piracy as a key way for the company to grow its sales of Windows, which is already used on more than 90 percent of personal computers.