Reuters top ten news stories delivered to your inbox each day.
You are here:
Business & Finance
The Great Debate
Do More With Reuters
Make Reuters My Homepage
Support (Customer Zone)
About Thomson Reuters
Pardon my bootleg: Navigating China's pirated waters
Fri Oct 16, 2009 10:35am EDT
Email | Print |
| Reprints | Single Page
By Melanie Lee
SHANGHAI (Reuters) - I confess, my copy of Windows 7 Ultimate, the latest version of Microsoft's Windows franchise, was just that: a copy.
I picked it up at a shop in a subway station near my house for 20 yuan, or less than $3 -- about the price of a bowl of soupy pork noodles available across Shanghai.
I bought it this week on a story assignment that sent me into the city's notorious Xinyang market, where boxes of the software were tucked among racks of fake Ralph Polo T-shirts and Gucci bags, even though its official launch was a week away.
One shopkeeper, a petite woman in her 30s, was clearly impressed by my well-heeled attire and assumed I was a seasoned buyer of pirated wares rampant throughout China.
"If you buy 10 you get it cheaper," she said in broken English.
"If you buy Microsoft Office 2010, you also get cheaper. I can wholesale you. How many you want?," she prodded, eager to unload stacks of the CDs wrapped in white non-descript cases.
In a sign of how far China has come since its Communist Iron Rice Bowl days, there was even the promise of customer satisfaction: "The installation instructions are in English and if it's not working you can bring it back to change," she said.
I left with my box containing one Windows 7 disk, the first part of my task completed.
Now came the more daunting part.
Many have warned me that installing pirated versions of Windows on a computer is a bit like playing Russian Roulette with your hard drive. But I had to see this mission through, and enlisted a colleague's help to install it on a laptop.
The results were quite impressive, at least initially.
Windows 7's interface is very fresh. Instead of little square boxes on the task bar at the bottom of the screen, there are icons. Keeping track of multiple browser windows is no problem as one click of the Internet Explorer icon lets you see all the browsers you have open.
It also allows you to drag interactive applets or widgets onto your desktop, and the boot-up time seemed faster than for the Windows Vista I have on my laptop at home.
But, after a reboot, the laptop mysteriously crashed, with a black screen prompting: "Bootmgr is missing." Continued...
View article on single page
FIAC draws contemporary art focus to Paris
also on reuters
Blog: Dow 10,000: It’s do-over time!
Book trade can avoid music labels' mistakes
Video: Balloon Boy found alive
More Technology News
Microsoft says most Sidekick phone data recovered
Google sparks e-books fight with Kindle
Oracle envisions rosy life with Sun
RIM launching new touchscreen BlackBerry Storm
Windows 7 release may test Apple's winning streak
More Technology News...
Software pirates hijack Windows 7 China debut
A selection of our best photos from the past 24 hours. Slideshow
Most Popular on Reuters
UPDATE 1-In New Orleans, Obama fires back at critics
Modern man a wimp says anthropologist
Embattled Pakistan faces its worst-case scenario
Obama wins first financial reform victory in months
Soros says U.S. economy will be drag on world growth
Sorry, no jobs. This is California
In New Orleans, Obama fires back at critics | Video
Criminal probe into Arizona "sweat dome" deaths
Wasserstein death to result in $186.5 million payment | Video
Google, IBM round out strong tech results week
Most Popular Articles RSS Feed
Balloon Boy found alive
Australia pram dragged 40m by train
Obama assures New Orleans of relief
Australia fire-fghters see success
Day of violence in Pakistan
China's EV car boom
Talk of the Town
Wall Street bonus controversy
Disabled painters showcase art
Italy denies ''paying off'' Taliban
Most Popular Videos RSS Feed
Gaming on the cheap
As the recession takes a bite out of video games sales in the stores, consumers are opting to download more games to save money while keeping themselves entertained. Full Article
Help and Contact Us |
Advertise With Us |
Journalism Handbook |
Site Index |
Thomson Reuters Corporate:
Professional Products |
Professional Products Support |
About Thomson Reuters |
Latin America |
United Kingdom |
Thomson Reuters is the world's largest international multimedia news agency, providing investing news, world news, business news, technology news, headline news, small business news, news alerts, personal finance, stock market, and mutual funds information available on Reuters.com, video, mobile, and interactive television platforms. Thomson Reuters journalists are subject to an Editorial Handbook which requires fair presentation and disclosure of relevant interests.
NYSE and AMEX quotes delayed by at least 20 minutes. Nasdaq delayed by at least 15 minutes. For a complete list of exchanges and delays, please click here.