PC Doctor May 15, 2015
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Dear PC Doctor:
One of the computers in our office popped up with an alarming message. It said our version of Windows was not genuine. What does this mean? Will it still work? Why would it say this when we have paid for all the licenses for all our software? Ours is a small office and I’d rather not call our expensive tech support company if you can help me.
I went to the Microsoft website to see what they had to say about this.
If you're seeing notifications that the copy of Windows that is installed on your PC might not be genuine, or that you might have installed counterfeit software, it may be that your copy of Windows was not properly activated or is otherwise not genuine. To fix this, click the notification and follow the steps to either repair Windows or—if you have inadvertently obtained counterfeit software—buy genuine Windows.
Until you correct the issue, you'll receive periodic reminders that Windows is not genuine. In addition, to more clearly display these messages, your desktop might turn black. You can reset it, but it will continue to happen until the issue is resolved.
Regardless of genuine status, Windows will still be able to get critical security updates. However, access to optional updates or benefits available exclusively to genuine Windows customers, such as Microsoft Security Essentials, might be restricted.
Make sure to buy Windows or a PC with Windows preinstalled either directly from Microsoft or from a local or online retail store that you know and trust. Also look for key features of genuine Windows, such as the Certificate of Authenticity (COA), a proof of license label, and an edge-to-edge hologram.
Until next time… Happy Computing!