Originally Posted by pete.i
If it means pirating any software then don't mention it. If it means giving someone a publicly available ISO (which was mentioned) then as long as that someone is going to use their own unique product number then there is nothing wrong with doing that. It is the product number that is important from the point of view of piracy rather than the actual software. For instance I can use a copy of Windows, on a CD/DVD that I have made, on any machine providing I use the unique product number associated with that particular machine to install that copy of Windows on that particular machine. Also the Windows that I install must be the same version of Windows that the unique product number pertains to. As I have already said Microsoft are now incorporating the product numbers into the BIOS of new computers. The disk that you use to install Windows 8 or 8.1 looks at the bios and providing the product number is a valid one for that version of Windows it will go ahead and install Windows. No product number actions need to be taken by you any more. Of course if the product number stored in BIOS does not match what you are trying to install then it will not allow you to proceed with the installation.
When I said in my post that the upgrade from Win 8 to Win 8.1 didn't happen automatically and I had to do it manually I meant I followed those instructions that I and Draygoes linked to. That worked for me. Windows 8.1 did not come as an automatic update which I thought it should have done. There is, also, a way to see if you have already been upgraded. On the Metro page if you have your name and an eyeglass icon (search) in the top right hand corner then you are already on Windows 8.1. There was a stand-alone download available on the C.Net web page at one point but I cannot find that now. Microsoft do charge for the upgrade and always have done but that is to upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 8 or 8.1. The upgrade from Win 8 to Win 8.1 is still a free upgrade and should be done from the Microsoft Store app on your Metro Page.
All of this is leading to the fact that Microsoft are making it much much more difficult to pirate Microsoft products and they are getting much much closer to their aim of every copy of Microsoft software, and specifically Microsoft O.S; should die with the machine. A new computer will, eventually, require a new copy of windows on it and more importantly, from Microsoft's point of view, will have required you and me to have PURCHASED a valid copy of Microsoft's software and product numbers with that machine.
That was a bit long winded but that is how I see this problem. I think you should be able to update (as opposed to upgrade) Windows 8 to Windows 8.1 from the Microsoft Store on your Metro page. Just follow those instructions that have been linked to, to the letter, and it should happen.
Now see, that has never been a problem for me, because I have found that windows 8 will give you the chance to enter a license key to activate. In fact, I have never had it refuse to install, even in VM's. Also, I have used the same key many times in VM's with no problem. I even installed Win8 on a PC that had been running Win7 (I changed back because I do prefer Win7... not the point.), and again it didn't refuse to install.
I have heard of what you are talking about, I have just never seen it first hand. Now, as long as the ISO file is an upgrade disk, it should work with even less trouble.
That having been said, I still recommend retrieving the product key using one of the many free programs. Just in case windows asks to be validated later.
Also, I am pretty sure that the question about posting a link to the ISO file is a question to the moderators. The people who run the forum may
not allow it, even if it is legal. That completely depends on them, and I would go so far as to say that its a good idea to question somthing that you have any doubts on, no matter how small the doubts are. Its better than getting into trouble.