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  MICROSOFT disallows vendors providing recovery CDs replacement 
 Date Written 
john albrich Jan 04, 2010, 12:55pm EST Report Abuse
I thought it would be easy to either download or even order a set of recovery CDs for a major vendor's PCs...because one generally used to be able to do this with eMachines (and a few other vendors) products.

In cases where one couldn't do this, I assumed it was the vendor always trying to save a few pennies by not allocating the storage or bandwidth needed to keep recovery CD archives available for the their customers.

I...was...wrong. I owe some vendors an apology.

I've been working on diagnosing problems with a cousin's eMachines laptop PC (1 of 2), and ran across this very interesting item from the vendor's website.

Microsoft (that's Bill Gates' M.I.C,R.O.S.O.F.T.) no longer allow the original eMachines PC Windows XP Recovery CDs to be supplied. However they wish us to continue to supply the correct Drivers and Utilities and to provide technical support.

Although we are not allowed to supply the Windows XP CD or Windows Vista DVD, we can supply the correct Windows drivers, utilities and manuals. We can also advise customers in the USA and Canada on which Windows XP CDs and Windows Vista DVDs are compatible with particular systems and particular licenses.

If your original Windows Computer Recovery CDs are no longer available, why not consider the option of upgrading to Windows 7? Please Click here for Windows 7 Computer Upgrade Option, Windows 7 Support and Windows 7 Drivers (USA and Canada).

So, it isn't necessarily the VENDORS who are screwing customer support, it appears to be Microsoft in this case.

The first reason provided was this is ostensibly because Microsoft no longer supports XP, although I have no idea how Microsoft's "no longer supporting XP" has anything to do customer-support-wise with a vendor keeping an archive copy of the recovery CDs for their users' machines. . .even relatively recent ones. Something eMachines is apparently willing to do but disallowed from doing by Microsoft. The only impact to Microsoft if the vendor keeps providing downloadable archives of their system OS Recovery CDs/DVDs, is Microsoft loses a possible source of squeezing even more OS sales revenue from people that ALREADY hold a license for their OS. There is ZERO support requirement burden for Microsoft here.

Investigating further, another search shows this restriction ALSO applied to Vista Recovery CDs. That pretty much blows Microsoft's 'this is because XP is no longer supported' statement out of the water.

How bloody nice of Microsoft to wish the vendors to still provide tech assist and drivers and utilities. How reasonable. How supporting.

It seems to me that this is strictly because Microsoft apparently wants to sell more FULL-COST copies of the older operating systems...even if they aren't officially fully supported. Shockingly :X the full-cost Retail and OEM XP and Vista version packages generally are still available from various legitimate sources...for generally US$100 or more.

By the way, Microsoft and the vendor have teamed together to provide instructions to legitimate customers on how one can re-install the full-cost version of Windows OS on the vendor's machine (which I assume means simply instructing the user how to install the machine-specific files/drivers/etc while using the full-cost OS). should be kept in mind that they do off-handedly remark that the full versions may not work on a given model system "We can also advise customers in the USA and Canada on which Windows XP CDs and Windows Vista DVDs are compatible with particular systems and particular licenses".

Note that the statement also refers to LICENSE restrictions, not just technical compatibility. Given the way it's worded, I also have to wonder if in Europe or some other regions Microsoft is possibly required by law to "allow" vendors to provide Recovery CD/DVD archives? Perhaps someone in Europe, etc. can provide that answer. If that's the case, then it really is NOT a "we don't support" it in the USA and Canada issue, it's a 'we don't support it in the USA and Canada because we don't have to by law' issue.

I found this was true on ALL versions of recovery CDs I tried, even for the vendor's more recently (pre-Win7) available systems.

And, regarding the last incredibly perceptive that Microsoft realizes the customer needs and wants to upgrade to Windows 7, even if what they currently have does 100% of everything they needed it to do...and then provides a convenient link for the customer to buy a new full-cost Windows 7 package (and never mind that they don't warn you that your computer and or peripherals may no longer be supported by Win7).

edit: add comment on US/Canada exclusive arrangement
edit: cleanup

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Jan 06, 2010, 12:58pm EST Report Abuse
>> Re: MICROSOFT disallows vendors providing recovery CDs replacement
Well luckily everybody either has, or know somebody who has (<_<) a pirated XP disc. I loved Vista, but there's really no reason, other than upgrade price, to use it over Windows 7. Windows XP is still a good choice for older machines.

<a class= Jan 06, 2010, 01:10pm EST Report Abuse
>> Re: MICROSOFT disallows vendors providing recovery CDs replacement
EEwww it's e-machines. Who cares ;) ;) ;)

3930K @ 5.00Ghz | GA-X79-UD3P | 16Gb DDR3 | GTX770 | W7 x64
john albrich Jan 06, 2010, 08:37pm EST Report Abuse
>> Re: MICROSOFT disallows vendors providing recovery CDs replacement
sovietdoc said:
EEwww it's e-machines. Who cares ;) ;) ;)

It's affecting other vendors as well. This is a Microsoft move...not an e-Machines move.

That's why I said I owed the vendors an apology, as I too was blaming them for failing to provide what I see as a critical support service for machines they sold as recently as 6 months ago.

edit to add: I see vendors are still selling machines with Vista, so I think Microsoft's withdrawal of Recovery images for machines vendors are still selling is even worse.

Fuzzy Slingshot Mar 18, 2010, 09:50pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: MICROSOFT disallows vendors providing recovery CDs replacement
I have been in a p**sing match with Microsoft and eBay for the last 2 months over the selling of OEM Restore Disc's. I have found some info regarding Microsofts rights to restrict the selling of OEM Restore/Recovery CD's. I found this thing called the "First Sale Doctrine" under the U.S. Copyright Act. There have been numerous Supreme Court cases ruling in favor of the First Sale Doctrine of the U.S. Copyright Act (against Microsoft & other software manufacturers) which states that once a copyright holder such as Microsoft has received royalties from the first sale they can no longer control the product in any way. Therefore, labeling such as "OEM", "NFR", "academic" is merely labeling & holds no legal authority. Google "first sale doctrine" and you will see what I mean.

Check out this link:

I know it doesn't mention Microsoft, however this is the same scenario. When is someone going to stand up to Microsoft and sue the sh*t out of them for bullying around the consumer.

bossa ritchie Mar 19, 2010, 10:50am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: MICROSOFT disallows vendors providing recovery CDs replacement
When I worked at Dell a long time ago it was the same you were not allowed to send customers replacement CD's, Dell had no problem with sending a Disc out to Customers but Microsoft didn't.



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