Get ready to register with Microsoft if you want to update your Windows operating system. In a shift toward greater monitoring of personal computer systems and potentially less copying of software, Microsoft will require users to let the company place a software "key" on their systems if they want the free, regular system updates it provides.
Privacy advocates are concerned, but Microsoft said the system is anonymous and won't be used for anything other than verifying the operating systems' authenticity. Called "Windows Genuine Advantage," the system is designed to limit the spread of copied software, a widespread practice that has grated on co-founder Bill Gates since the earliest days of personal computing.
News source: The Seattle Times