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  Microsoft Sidewinder X6/X4 Kybds-Install Issues? 
 Date Written 
john albrich Dec 13, 2011, 10:28pm EST Report Abuse
Is internet access REALLY required to install Sidewinder X6 Keyboard?

If you have this keyboard, can you tell me if internet access was REALLY required for installing this keyboard? Have you tried installing it without internet access? If so, what was the result?

I'm interested in the Microsoft Sidewinder X6 keyboard, but I'm VERY concerned about something I read on the "requirements" page.

* CD drive
* Powered USB port

* Internet access REQUIRED for software installation.

One concern is just how much longer will Microsoft support this keyboard's "authorization" (or for whatever the hell is REQUIRED for installation)? This keyboard is already a couple years old, and I could see Microsoft easily dropping support without warning in just a year or so...That would thus make this keyboard USELESS because you therefore wouldn't be able to install it. What happens when you upgrade your system and/or reinstall your OS then? It would seem you're stuck with a paper-weight if that happens.

Even though this comes with a CD, it REQUIRES internet access for installation? I can only guess this is some sort of "authorization" check (and Microsoft being DAMNED F-ING control-freak nosey yet again).

Just for info, another reason I'm so concerned about this is that I once bought over $500 of software that during installation from CDs had to be "authorized" over the internet, even though ALL of the program was on the CDs (similar to Microsoft key handling). But the program become worthless in less than a year when I upgraded the computer and had to reinstall the program. The company had stopped supporting that version of the software...but I would be allowed to buy an "discounted upgrade authorization" for a couple hundred bucks!

(note: moved from different thread for focus)

edit to add:
The choice (which must be made today) is between this
$45 Microsoft Sidewinder X6
$60 Logitech G110

Note: The X6 and G110 have comparable (+/-5% more or less) user feedback ratings on Newegg and seem to have comparable website "editor/contributor" reviews...but the G110 appears to NOT have the "phone home" installation requirement.

edit: eliminated urgent timeline requirement as this keyboard is no longer on sale at $45
But, if you can provide information...KNOWING exactly how this online installation requirement works is still important if it comes on sale again.

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john albrich Dec 15, 2011, 02:24pm EST Report Abuse
>> Re: Microsoft Sidewinder X6 Kybd - Install Issues?
Also, does this "internet connection required during installation" requirement apply to the X4 as well? The product description for the Sidewinder X4 keyboard does NOT specifically include this requirement (but from experience with Microsoft...that doesn't mean it's not there. That it does exist on the X6 version is enough to justify concern).

edit to add:
This is the ONLY place (including the Microsoft product website) I've found any mention that the X4 requires an internet connection to install the software...even though it comes with a full installation CD.
Note: this appears to be from a pre-available announcement and may thus have flawed info
To use the SideWinder X4 Keyboard, consumers will need the following:
-Windows 7, Windows Vista or Windows XP PC
-An available USB port



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