In its increasingly aggressive drive to stamp out piracy, Microsoft is bringing Office into the WGA fold, and adding a new notifications service to WGA itself.
Windows Genuine Advantage has worked so well that Microsoft is planning to introduce a version of the anti-piracy authentication program targeted at its Office suite.
Microsoft officials said on April 24 that the company is commencing this week a pilot of "Office Genuine Advantage,"
a program that will operate almost identically to WGA (Windows Genuine Advantage).
Microsoft is piloting OGA in seven languages, initially: Brazilian Portuguese, Czech, Greek, Korean, Simplified Chinese, Russian and Spanish.
Click here to read more about how Microsoft has altered some business practices to fight pirated software.
When asked about Microsofts plans for extending the OGA pilot to North America and other regions, a Microsoft spokeswoman said: "While Microsoft Office is committed to participating in the advantages of Microsofts overarching Genuine Software Initiative [GSI], theres nothing further to announce at this time."
Microsoft already has in place an Office authentication mechanism, known as the Office Validation Assistant,
or OVA. OVA uses an ActiveX control to scan users systems to verify that they are running nonpirated copies of Office. Microsoft officials said the company plans eventually to replace OVA with OGA, but did not offer a timetable for doing so.
Until this week, when asked whether Microsoft planned to extend its WGA program to Office and other non-Windows software, Microsoft officials said they were looking into such a possibility but had no definitive plans to do so.
Read the full story on Microsoft Watch: Microsoft Bringing Genuine Advantage Authentication to Office