Windows 8 RTM leaked ISOs activations now blocked [Update]

Showing off what was possible yesterday for a short time.

According to a number of posts over on the MDL forums, the server that was allowing activations of all the leaked RTM images has now been either taken offline or blocked for new requests.

Information has since come to light that the server was located in Russia, and allowed hundreds of activations before being taken offline. It's unclear what action was taken, either by Microsoft or the owner of the Key Management Server (KMS); but judging from the posts over on MDL, it seems that anyone trying to activate Windows 8 illegally on that server will be disappointed.

To recap, yesterday messages started appearing on Twitter that it was possible to activate all four of the leaked Windows 8 images that were leaked over the weekend, including the earlier leaked Enterprise "N" version by pointing the activation sequence to a server located in Russia.

It probably won't be the last we hear of leaks and bypasses, but for now it appears it's a win for Microsoft.

Windows 8 will be made available on August 15th for MSDN and TechNet subscribers, and on October 26th for retail purchase. Although pricing has yet to be confirmed, a rumor suggests that Windows 8 Pro could be made available for around $70 dollars, or at the confirmed $39,95 upgrade time-limited offer.

Timeline (oldest to newest)

Windows 8 Release Preview users eligible for $40 RTM upgrade, require past license - Monday 2 July
Microsoft confirms Windows 8 has hit RTM - Wednesday 1 August
Microsoft physically hands over Windows 8 to OEMs - Thursday 2 August
Windows 8 "Enterprise N" RTM has leaked - Friday 3 August
Four more Windows 8 RTM ISOs leak; two to web - Sunday 5 August
Windows 8 Pro license key to cost just €59.99? - Sunday 5 August
Windows 8 RTM leaked ISOs have been cracked - Yesterday 6 August

Update: It appears that the Russian KMS Server is back online and activating copies again.

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oops...... i was told that these covers are not real and totally fake! they are just concept design from deviantart.com so pls ignore

Interesting, WHS 2011 still refers to Windows 8 as Pre Release Software. not sure if that's an out dated connector software or these iso's are duds.

It's odd, a few years ago I would of done anything to get leaked copies etc, but these days I'm just happy waiting for Windows 8, even a few months after it's release day until I get my hands on it

So if you install say windows 8 enterprise, it wont let you activate, so what, you have an annoying activation popup after 180 days?

xpclient said,
KMS activation is not permanent anyways. Or were they using MAK keys?

its 180 day rearm, did this the other night with a Hyper-V install of server 2012, it says 180 days remaining.

Microsoft needs to understand, you need to give it to the people hot out the oven. Even if it means hot spasm.

My Enterprise N is still working....I have it installed in a VM. If you want to see it just head over to the "August 2012 Desktops" thread and check it out.

smooth_criminal1990 said,
Who'd be stupid enough to activate what's essentially a pirated copy of Windows online? That's why cracks were invented

Windows 7 was never truly cracked like XP was. The closet crack was something that just removed the activation technology out of windows. The activation just exploited the OEM activation. Just like the KMS activation's do. XP had a .dll that would be loaded in to create activation. All these activation methods just take advantage of built in activation technology. And at this time OEM activation for Windows 8 will not be capable via the same methods that SLIC < 2.1 were capable of. Windows 8 brings SLIC version 3.0 a whole new game.

I for one will be purchasing Windows 8, its too cheap to pirate it this time. 40$ for a upgrade, surely every user on this forum that is of any technical knowledge has come into play with a Windows XP PC legally...

Klownicle said,

surely every user on this forum that is of any technical knowledge has come into play with a Windows XP PC legally...

/me looks at windows key sticker on the bottom of his work laptop =)

SirEvan said,

/me looks at windows key sticker on the bottom of his work laptop =)

Nice one SirEvan, me too, and about 100 other people at work that release they can do it ;-)

Why bother... get the RC .. load into a VM... witness how ridiculous Win 8 is first hand....have a laugh.. then delete and get back to normal computing

I don't think you get over it yet. If you do, you wouldn't cry about it in many posts about Win8.

rhianntp said,
Why bother... get the RC .. load into a VM... witness how ridiculous Win 8 is first hand....have a laugh.. then delete and get back to normal computing

rhianntp said,
Why bother... get the RC .. load into a VM... witness how ridiculous Win 8 is first hand....have a laugh.. then delete and get back to normal computing

then laugh at user who's name looks almost like "Rihanna" trying to troll everyone.

Edited by SirEvan, Aug 7 2012, 8:53pm :

Whatever key that Russian KMS server is using to activate everyone's machines is bound to be blacklisted any time now, and the company or person it was issued to banned from receiving more keys at best, prosecuted at worst.

MS should release the RTM to people who actively participated in the CP and/or RP.
These people know the risks of early adoption and it's mainly these people pirating right now.

oh steve ballmer, you so silly, when will you learn not to charge $400 for your OS... you would have much lower rates of piracy if a full version of the top tier windows was around $90.

zeroomegazx said,
oh steve ballmer, you so silly, when will you learn not to charge $400 for your OS... you would have much lower rates of piracy if a full version of the top tier windows was around $90.

I guess you are not aware of the prices for Windows 8.

zeroomegazx said,
oh steve ballmer, you so silly, when will you learn not to charge $400 for your OS... you would have much lower rates of piracy if a full version of the top tier windows was around $90.

Top tier windows costs 50 bucks. What? And when did Windows 7 cost 400? What the..Ultimate is around €250. Troll much?

alwaysonacoffebreak said,

Top tier windows costs 50 bucks. What? And when did Windows 7 cost 400? What the..Ultimate is around €250. Troll much?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/...t.aspx?Item=N82E16832116718

Windows 7 Ultimate was roughly $400 USD upon original release. Windows 8 Pro Full Retail (non upgrade) will cost much more than the cheap upgrade costs that have been announced. We also don't know the full price after the original $39.99 fee. Personally I do not want an upgrade license I won't get an ISO with to reinstall which is what the upgrade seems it will be.

zeroomegazx said,

http://www.newegg.com/Product/...t.aspx?Item=N82E16832116718

Windows 7 Ultimate was roughly $400 USD upon original release. Windows 8 Pro Full Retail (non upgrade) will cost much more than the cheap upgrade costs that have been announced. We also don't know the full price after the original $39.99 fee. Personally I do not want an upgrade license I won't get an ISO with to reinstall which is what the upgrade seems it will be.

So, personally you want the extra functionality of having a Pro Full Retail copy that allows you to reinstall (seriously people still do this?) when you want yet at the same time you don't want to pay extra for this privilege?

aviator189 said,
Come on, just buy the freaking thing when it comes out. Why do people have to resort to pirating stuff...

I fully plan on reverting to proper MAK key when it becomes available. Fully licensed, just .. impatient

I'm just saying, if they are really only charging $75. It'll be the first copy of Windows I've ever paid for. I've been lucky enough to get free copies directly from MS over the years just not this time around and perfect timing too, when it's by far the cheapest it's ever been.

MS only allows 6 months between 'activation verifications' Thus anyone who did successfully activate, and won't get zapped by updates/patches/TOS they never read - only have the activated copy until February - when they will need another activation verification. They are also not allowed to change any core computer hardware. USB and SATA are the only 'changables' - change anything else and you'll need re-activation.

There is something to be said about those "pirating" windows 8 right now. It has only been out to RTM for a few days now so you could say that all those "illegal" copies are from real enthusiasts looking to be on the bleeding edge. I don't think Microsoft is too worried about letting a few hundred (or thousand) people activate an early copy right now.

Dang, I wanted to get the Pro version down this week and upgrade my Ultimate install and activate until August 15th when I get it from MSDN. Oh well, I guess I just have to work with the Enterprise until then.

Good thing I was able to activate, come October 26thst, I just change the Product Key with the one I purchase and should be able to continue with the same install.

article

It probably won't be the last we hear of leaks and bypasses, but for now it appears it's a win for Microsoft.


Win? More like catch up. Big Lose that Win 8 was defeated at 3rd RTM span date.

Jose_49 said,

Win? More like catch up. Big Lose that Win 8 was defeated at 3rd RTM span date.

MS just keeps the piracy nrs to a nr they can agree with, don't forget even pirated copies bring in money for MS. If MS wants they can make Windows uncrackable (or so hard its not worth the effort, or barely) And if you think they cant, I'd love a full functional Windows 2008 R2 server with Exchange, SQL, SharePoint and more of MS's cooperate products running. Pirated and free but genuine.
IIRC it was sort off doable with Exchange 2003 to run an unlicensed copy without much trouble. Altho the only way was to mirror an existing server. Been a few years tho so not to sure anymore

I clicked the first clickable link which is meant to go an article I presume? And I was taken to a small image of windows 8...

n_K said,
I clicked the first clickable link which is meant to go an article I presume? And I was taken to a small image of windows 8...

Tried the "Report a problem with article" link?

n_K said,
I clicked the first clickable link which is meant to go an article I presume? And I was taken to a small image of windows 8...

Fixed it, sorry!

roadwarrior said,
Boo Hoo, cry me a ****ing river. Damned "entitled" generation. Wait till it is released like everyone else.

Who's crying? I downloaded the RTM and installed it but haven't activated it. Once every 6 hours or so it will pop up a screen telling me to activate but I just close it. I'll get a serial key once it's on MSDNAA and enter it in, just like I did for 7.

mrp04 said,

Who's crying? I downloaded the RTM and installed it but haven't activated it. Once every 6 hours or so it will pop up a screen telling me to activate but I just close it. I'll get a serial key once it's on MSDNAA and enter it in, just like I did for 7.


What ass your talking out of? Theres a constant watermark on the bottom left untill you activate it, no more popups, doesnt interfere with anything. just a watermark thats displayed on top of everything
Im doing the same tho, already running Win8 and just waiting untill i can go buy a license

Not really that much of a big deal, it expired two weeks after the consumer / release previews anyway.

Just nice for people who did activate it, they can use the RTM until its possible to legally purchase it.

Mine is still activated normally. I don't care, though. I tried everything and now I'm going to format my dual boot ( win7/win8 ). It was time for a nice, clean installation of Windows 7. The half baked mess Win 8 is over for me. Let it to the 'average Joes'.

Nevertheless, I'm pretty sure, a solid activation method will be found. MS has always left holes in the OS., especially now that they want many dudes to jump on 8. It's guaranteed, sooner or later.

PC EliTiST said,
Mine is still activated normally. I don't care, though. I tried everything and now I'm going to format my dual boot ( win7/win8 ). It was time for a nice, clean installation of Windows 7. The half baked mess Win 8 is over for me. Let it to the 'average Joes'.

Nevertheless, I'm pretty sure, a solid activation method will be found. MS has always left holes in the OS., especially now that they want many dudes to jump on 8. It's guaranteed, sooner or later.

Not like they ACTUALLY want to prevent piracy... they need both a big userbase and good profit. So let's just find a good balance...

bviktor said,

Not like they ACTUALLY want to prevent piracy... they need both a big userbase and good profit. So let's just find a good balance...

When you have the 99% of the market, you want to keep that by any means. In a reasonable manner, of course. 1-1,5% pirated, ain't gonna hurt anyone.

Many times these, say, 1% pirates are being used as solid beta testers which in other cases, they could be paid for that. Most of them are the same guys who used all the prerelease versions of Win 8 ( CP/RP ).

Edited by PC EliTiST, Aug 7 2012, 11:05am :

PC EliTiST said,

When you have the 99% of the market, you want to keep that by any means. In a reasonable manner, of course. 1-1,5% pirated, ain't gonna hurt anyone.

Many times these, say, 1% pirates are being used as solid beta testers which in other cases, they could be paid for that. Most of them are the same guys who used all the prerelease versions of Win 8 ( CP/RP ).

I think every stat you have is made up out of thin air. Good job!

ccoltmanm said,

I think every stat you have is made up out of thin air. Good job!


They are made up out of thin air!
MS never had 99% (close tho) and the % pirated copies running around are far greater then just 1% China alone gives the global pirated windows % over 5% already probably

ccoltmanm said,

I think every stat you have is made up out of thin air. Good job!

and who are you to speak against him, "average Joe"?

grayscale said,

and who are you to speak against him, "average Joe"?


What? You're picking a fight with him? Why...? Is this something you do for fun? Those stats were obviously the sort of casual "making a point" stats we all fart out every now and then.

It's a well known and quantifiable fact that Windows has never had 99% of the market, and that pirated versions of Windows make up more than 1%. When faced with those numbers, calling them made up isn't speaking "against" anyone--it's stating facts.

Why you're being defensive is beyond my imagination. Kinda weird, tbh.

Joshie said,

What? You're picking a fight with him? Why...? Is this something you do for fun? Those stats were obviously the sort of casual "making a point" stats we all fart out every now and then.

It's a well known and quantifiable fact that Windows has never had 99% of the market, and that pirated versions of Windows make up more than 1%. When faced with those numbers, calling them made up isn't speaking "against" anyone--it's stating facts.

Why you're being defensive is beyond my imagination. Kinda weird, tbh.

and obviously you didn't pick up the sarcasm, "average Joe"
/facepalm

Now they cannot activate online. Which is a bad idea in the first place. So what. The offline method (own, downloadable KMS server in Hyper-V) still works...

Neobond said,
I also read up on that, and decided not to include it, because even that method isn't flawless by any means.

True. I'll prolly end up waiting for an MSDNAA release...

bviktor said,
Now they cannot activate online. Which is a bad idea in the first place. So what. The offline method (own, downloadable KMS server in Hyper-V) still works...

Where is this offline KMS activator???

ingramator said,

Where is this offline KMS activator???

Don't waste your time. The offline KMS is nothing new, but it requires a KMS key which nobody has for Windows 8. You can get the KMS working, but it won't do anything.

Kushan said,

Don't waste your time. The offline KMS is nothing new, but it requires a KMS key which nobody has for Windows 8. You can get the KMS working, but it won't do anything.

That's exactly what I thought, the whole hyper-v install thing is bull as far as I can see, the only way to activate is if you're an OEM or from Microsoft dev team

Kushan said,

Don't waste your time. The offline KMS is nothing new, but it requires a KMS key which nobody has for Windows 8. You can get the KMS working, but it won't do anything.

Indeed. I have experience with KMS after setting the one up at the company I work for. It won't activate a windows 8 machine until you add a windows 8 KMS key, and those are not available yet. Even when they are, Microsoft will be able to tell which key is activating a machine and can thereby trace it back to who it was issued to.

Damn, Not good! Wait for me to activate then shut it down
Nevermind, I'll never use Win 8 as my primary OS just for test drive in VM

FoxieFoxie said,

Wish I could buy now

Which is the reason why most people are downloading these images. If MS allowed people to purchase now these images wouldn't be hot topics as they currently are.

Come on Microsoft sort it out

SK[ said,]

Which is the reason why most people are downloading these images. If MS allowed people to purchase now these images wouldn't be hot topics as they currently are.

Come on Microsoft sort it out

OEMs need time to make drivers for Windows 8. Otherwise we'll have the Vista issue (drivers) all over again because drivers won't be up to par.

cybertimber2008 said,
OEMs need time to make drivers for Windows 8. Otherwise we'll have the Vista issue (drivers) all over again because drivers won't be up to par.

Or OEMs should make some more standard hardware. considering the huge support of hardware from the Windows API and kernel.

cybertimber2008 said,
OEMs need time to make drivers for Windows 8. Otherwise we'll have the Vista issue (drivers) all over again because drivers won't be up to par.

vista wasnt JUST the drivers.

Shadowzz said,
Or OEMs should make some more standard hardware. considering the huge support of hardware from the Windows API and kernel.

I agree - take webcams for example; there is a defined open standard called usbvc and Microsoft supports it 100% in Windows but vendors wanting to save money by putting less hardware in device opt to load the firmware at the same time as the device resulting in the need for frankenstein drivers to be installed to get the camera working properly. When it boils down to it, it is hardware companies being cheapskates by putting a tonne of hardware functionality into the software resulting in the problems we see today - be they winprinters, winmodems, winwebcams etc. It appears that no matter how much Microsoft try to encourage hardware companies to do the right thing we see the same stupid decisions being made over and over again.

torrentthief said,
It is £49.99 for a UK serial for win8 pro btw.

News is about Russia and MS products still not adjusted in price in Russia. So it's 4 - 10 times more expensive here depending on region. Until MS adjust their prices to local incomes they won't beat piracy in Russia, China and rest of emerging, developing and undeveloped markets.

Julius Caro said,

vista wasnt JUST the drivers.

Problem with vista was that XP drivers didnt work on vista, and that computers pre-installed with vista had to little RAM (saw comps. with 256 or 512 ram).
This is not (a big) issue with W8, most hardware works out of the box and if not, W7 drivers tend to work just as well.

A computer today with win7 will work with W8.

coth said,

News is about Russia and MS products still not adjusted in price in Russia. So it's 4 - 10 times more expensive here depending on region. Until MS adjust their prices to local incomes they won't beat piracy in Russia, China and rest of emerging, developing and undeveloped markets.

These are the same markets that Google advocate pricing your apps at $1 when putting them on the Play Store. It simply isn't worth selling in these regions at such low prices - the cost of providing even a low level of support makes the transaction a net-loss. Hence why the majority of western software developers don't make the effort; it simply isn't profitable.