Due to the negative feedback it received from critics and customers, Microsoft decided to issue a new version of Genuine Advantage Notifications and offer instructions on how to disable or remove the software's pilot version. The easiest way to remove the pilot version, says Microsoft, is to download the new version, which automatically uninstalls any previous versions. But if you don't want to install the new version, you can disable or remove the pilot version manually.
First, you need to figure out if you have the pilot version of the GAN software. The version numbers of the pilot software range from 1.5.0527.0 to 1.5.0532.2. Here's how you can find out what version of the software you have installed on your computer:
- Log into Windows XP with an account that has administrative permissions
- Click Start and then Control Panel
- Double-click Add or Remove Programs, click Windows XP - Software, click Windows Genuine Advantage Notifications, and then click Click here for support information
- You'll see a Support Info box with the version number in it. If the version number is between 1.5.0527.0 and 1.5.0532.2, then you have the pilot version. Click Close.
Here's how to disable the pilot version without removing it completely from your computer:
- Click Start and then Search
- Copy and paste the following file name into the search box: %Windir%\system32\WgaLogon.dll
- Once you find the file, change its extension to .old. So the new file name should be %Windir%\system32\WgaLogon.old
- Go back and copy and paste the following file name into the search box: %Windir%\system32\WgaTray.exe
- Change its name to %Windir%\system32\WgaTray.old
- Restart the computer and Genuine Advantage Notifications should be disabled
Here's how to remove Genuine Advantage Notifications completely from your computer:
- Make sure you've completed all the above steps
- Restart the computer
- Click Start, click Run, type cmd, and then click OK
- At the command prompt, paste in the following command, then press enter: Regsvr32 %Windir%\system32\LegitCheckControl.dll /u
- Restart the computer
- Click Start, click Run, type cmd, and then click OK.
- At the command prompt, delete the following files by typing the Del command. Press ENTER after you type each command Del%Windir%\system32\wgalogon.old Del%Windir%\system32\WgaTray.old Del%Windir%\system32\LegitCheckControl.dll
- At the command prompt, type regedit.
- Locate and then right-click the following registry subkeys. Click after you locate each subkey: DeleteHKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft \WindowsNT\ CurrentVersion\Winlogon\Notify\WgaLogon HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows \CurrentVersion\Uninstall\WgaNotify
- Restart your computer
Besides having its share of critics, Microsoft has also inspired plenty of hackers who like to crack its security schemes. With a quick Web search, you can find plenty of hacks and cracks for automatically validating your version of Windows XP, whether it's legitimate or not.
For even more information about Microsoft, software and computer technology, check out the links on the next page.