Microsoft has updated software that verifies whether a copy of Windows is genuine in its Windows XP Professional edition, making it similar to the notification in Windows Vista and thus more persistently visible to users. In a blog posting attributed to Alex Kochis, a Microsoft director of product marketing and management, the company said it made the changes to the Windows Genuine Notification (WGA) alerts for XP Pro because it is "the product edition that is most often stolen."
Now when a version of Windows XP Pro is found to be pirated or counterfeit, the next time a user logs on to the system, the desktop screen background will be black, replacing whatever custom desktop may have been set by the user. This will reappear every 60 minutes, even if a user resets the screen's background. Previously, this was not a part of the WGA notification for Windows XP Pro.