By Brian Livingston
I reported on Feb. 1 that the upgrade version of Windows Vista accepts itself as a product it
can upgrade over, and on Feb. 15 that Vista has a built-in command that allows you to extend
its activation deadline from 30 days to 120 days.
Those articles were very popular with readers - the Feb. 1 story garnered a reader rating of
4.49 out of 5, the highest score of any article the newsletter has ever published - but that
doesn't mean that these reports aren't controversial.
Support for revealing the secrets of Vista
Most of my readers thought it was highly interesting that Vista doesn't perform even the
simplest test for a qualifying operating system before the upgrade version will install. Any
running Windows OS, from NT 4.0 to Vista itself, will do. Vista's complete lack of any
version-testing code makes it possible to clean-install the upgrade version of the new OS to a
blank hard drive - a capability that Microsoft claimed it had deliberately eliminated from the