Windows Validation Assistant

  CurlyWhirly 21:46 30 Oct 04
Locked

Hi. I was browsing around the Microsoft Website earlier this evening and I stumbled across the Windows Validation Assistant and after running it I had the following message:


"Thank you for running the Windows Validation Assistant, it appears that your Windows product key is valid.
This is a strong indicator that your operating system is genuine, however the Windows Validation Assistant cannot make a final determination."


With so many people using Microsoft's operating systems worldwide how can they distinguish between valid keys like mine and the pirated keys as this would number MILLIONS worldwide!
Their database must be enormous!

  kev.Ifty 22:54 30 Oct 04

Here is a very very simple eg. of how 'some' serial numbers work.....12342 or 34566. These appear to be random numbers, but i can recognise them as 'my serial numbers' by doing a simple sum.

12342... 1+2+3-4=2 or 34566... 3+4+5-6=6.

If i stick to the same pattern of + + -. I will be able to work out genuine serial numbers from those nasty fakes!!

Now give me a computer and Hexadecimal and 32 bit encryption and all that. I will then be able to generate great long strings of figures.

The trick is though that the computer you have checking the huge 28 or 32 character number 'Knows' the sum +++-+-+= etc.. Or what ever you have previously chosen!

Kev.

  VoG II 23:10 30 Oct 04

Yep, a bit like CAS Numbers with a checksum at the end.

  CurlyWhirly 00:12 31 Oct 04

Thanks. I now have a better understanding but just one final thought and that is my 25 digit PRODUCT KEY (written on the back of the Windows XP green folder) contains numbers AND letters but when I go to the SYSTEM option (under GENERAL) this is composed ONLY of numbers and they have been reduced from 25 to 20.
The formula must be quite complex.
Just curious!

  powerless 00:19 31 Oct 04

Totally geek that.

Translation needed...

  kev.Ifty 00:44 31 Oct 04

I,in my job,use encryption codes all the time. (be it 16,32,128 bit whatever).I cannot, hand on heart, tell you that i can understand exactly what it's all about.

As you probably know. They use letters to represent numbers in some of these key's. If you think about it we only have Zero to nine, after that we start using two characters ie Ten. This is a one and a zero, which would confuse a daft computer, because it don't know if you mean TEN or ONE-ZERO.

So some bloke decided to use letters to represent bigger numbers.(He was probable Greek. They usually are)So now after nine '9' in Hex they use A. A is 10. B is 11 up to F.

So what W and Z etc in these product key's are I don't know. Which i suppose is the point.

Good question CurlyWhirly. If you find out the answer...... Let us know.

Cheers Kev.

  CurlyWhirly 00:50 31 Oct 04

Yes I think you are right in saying that they use numbers in place of letters similar to hexadecimal.
I will mark this topic as resolved as I have a partial understanding of what's going on and I don't want to take it too far as after all we are talking about Microsoft's anti-piracy feature!

  CurlyWhirly 00:54 31 Oct 04

In the above please read 'letters in place of numbers' and NOT 'numbers in place of letters'.
There are times like this when I wish I had an edit button! lol

  CurlyWhirly 09:02 31 Oct 04

I now have a better understanding but just one final thought and that is my 25 digit PRODUCT KEY (written on the back of the Windows XP green folder) contains numbers AND letters but when I go to the SYSTEM option (under GENERAL) this is composed ONLY of numbers and they have been reduced from 25 to 20. The formula must be quite complex!


I have found out from browsing through Microsoft's website that the 20 digit number that I was on about (above) is something called a "hardware hash" (a non-unique number generated from the PC's hardware configuration).
Resolved.

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

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