Microsoft has killed off the anti-piracy mechanism designed to validate whether customers were running genuine copies of Office or not.
And the Redmond company has been as quiet about the death of Office Genuine Advantage as it was about the recent release of Microsoft Security Essentials 2.0.
However, the move was indeed confirmed officially by the software giant, which published a Knowledge Base article containing a tad of information of the discontinuing of the Office anti-piracy watchdog.
“The Office Genuine Advantage (“OGA”) program has been retired. For more information about the benefits of genuine Office, please visit the following website: Benefits of genuine Office,” Microsoft revealed (via Ed Bott).
The message has been shared with the world on December 17th, via KB 917999 “Error message when you try to validate Office by using Office Genuine Advantage: "Why didn't my computer complete validation" or "Error code: 0x8018111".”
I’ve tried to validate my copy of Office 2010, but the Office Genuine Advantage mechanism is indeed missing completely.
I’m guessing that customers running older versions of Office, such as Office 2007, will also no longer be able to validate their genuine copies of the productivity suite, or check to see whether their software is not pirated.
The software giant offered no explanation related to the decision to shut down Office Genuine Advantage, or deliver any indication of whether customers should expect the Windows Genuine Advantage mechanism to suffer the same fate.
At the time of this article WGA was up and running under normal parameters.
According to Microsoft both OGA and WGA have been set up to help users verify products they acquire and make sure that they’re genuine.
The Redmond company did not use OGA or WGA as tools to go against consumers, but rather as solutions to detect pirated versions of Windows and Office and ultimately have end users help identify the source, with bootleggers facing legal consequences.
As is the case for WGA, OGA was capable of reducing the functionality of Office when it detected that a copy of the productivity suite was non-genuine, the euphemism Microsoft used instead of pirated.
Office Home and Business 2010 RTM Build 14.0.4760.1000 is available for download here.
Office Home and Student 2010 RTM Build 14.0.4760.1000 is available for download here.
Office Professional 2010 RTM Build 14.0.4760.1000 is available for download here.