From a member of our audience. Looks like the corporate folks may have some problems, too:
According to what we were told (I’m not saying this is gospel), the select
and open licensing versions (of corporate software) will have product activation. Each company will
be given a master product key (for each product). These master keys will
only work on the specific media that each company is issued with. (Ed. note: You’ll probably
need an exact copy; at most, the master key is embedded into the program.)
The product will not need to be activated with Microsoft after this, and we
don’t know at this stage if changing hardware will effectively disable it,
but the general feeling is that it will need to be reactivated, using the
media and the master key.
Effectively, a warez corporate distribution would need a given companies’ specific media,
and the specific key. As these are traceable, there is obviously an
incentive to keep both of these items secure. Microsoft is unlikely to
initiate legal action if they did turn up in the distribution channel, but
before you get your master keys, the CEO has to sign his first born over to
M$. This could lead to uncomfortable questions being asked, and in the worst
case, you could lose your job if you are responsible for preventing the
leaking of both parts of the equation.
Of course once a key/media set is loose, there is nothing Microsoft can do
to stop it. Unless they’ve built some other snooping technology into Windows
Update, or perhaps they could invalidate the key in the next Service Pack.
I’m sure they’ve got a plan, as they now have the power.