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 PostPost subject: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 12:21 pm 
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Hey people, it's been a while.
I'm making a comeback of sorts.


Well I have been questioning Betas recently and was wondering how they stand against the law.

Are they illegal to store and use? What do you all think?

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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 12:32 pm 
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You could say they are, since a lot of them were internal leaks which the public (e.g. Us) weren't supposed to have. However, Microsoft don't seem to mind as they know there is no way they can remove every trace of those leaked files from the Internet and they will keep cropping up again and again. The reason we think they leave BA alone is they either don't know about us (unlikely) or because we make sure not just every tom [censored] and harry can have access to the files. You have to show you're worthy of accessing those files by contributing. And also the fact that we take leaking of the FTP details seriously.

A lot of people have the same concerns as yourself, but to my knowledge nobody has been approached by Microsoft or any other company about their use or storage of betas. Some who have modified Longhorn (Longhorn Reloaded) have been given a C & D by Microsoft but that's as fas as it went.

It comes to my mind that if MS did attempt to remove betas from the Internet, that they wouldn't get the feedback they currently do to help make the software the way it is today. I believe this aids in our continued quest to keep betas alive on the Internet and available for those to who want to test them.

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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 12:56 pm 
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Is illegal though, just need to read the EULA's in the ISO's to see that.

*Not that I, the majority of this forum or Microsoft themselves seem to give a crap.


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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 12:57 pm 
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Oh hey there, its been a while.

To summarise, I see betas as abandonware. Generally companies don't care but they can still whoop your ass if they want.

As long as your not selling pirated copies etc there isn't really a problem.

tbh I'm still surprised they haven't shut this site down but eh, like Andy said they may just not give a toss, noones making money and all donations go to the server

Not like Nintendo... I got a C&D when I was like 12, along with a bunch of other people, for having a freewebs.com page linking to a bunch of GBA roms hosted on public directories that I didn't own. But I guess that was different


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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 1:03 pm 
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Suppose it helps we have a slight 'filter' on who gets access to the servers, its not like a come-one-come-all type thing that would draw a lot of attention to itself.

ADD: Hey! Seems you left BA the month before I joined...


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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 1:26 pm 
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J.Byrne wrote:
ADD: Hey! Seems you left BA the month before I joined...

Lol, well its nice to meet ya! And I'm glad to see people I know still round here too.

Thanks to everyone who answered my question, I'll flick through the latest beta news section on this site.

I see how it works, BA don't exactly keep a low profile but at the same time making sure the files are accessed by genuine folk who will not sell/mass distribute/profit from them.

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The reason for me asking was I found an old hard drive I had from my FTP that was here over a year ago, it brought back some memories, I considered wiping it, but then changed my mind.

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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 1:32 pm 
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compact-mac wrote:
I see how it works, BA don't exactly keep a low profile but at the same time making sure the files are accessed by genuine folk who will not sell/mass distribute/profit from them[/offtopic]


You should see the amount of people trying to get in nowadays by just posting the same chicago/whistler/whatever build over and over 8-)

J.Byrne wrote:
ADD: Hey! Seems you left BA the month before I joined...


You have that effect on people ;)
nah man, jokes and all that stuff


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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 2:00 pm 
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happy dude wrote:
You should see the amount of people trying to get in nowadays by just posting the same chicago/whistler/whatever build over and over 8-)


Hey I just found Longhorn 4074!!!!!!!!!!!!11111111111 :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :D ... no... wait...

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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 2:23 pm 
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Welcome back :)


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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 6:11 pm 
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happy dude wrote:
You should see the amount of people trying to get in nowadays by just posting the same chicago/whistler/whatever build over and over 8-)


the same build ? i just thought they posted builds that we already had .. and they could be moved into the Public Servers forum as they are hosted on rapidshare/etc and could benefit those who had just joined BA.

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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 7:20 pm 
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I'm sorry that I must ask this, but what is a C&D that andy and happy dude mentioned?

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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 7:21 pm 
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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 7:31 pm 
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Thank you andy!

I think I would ask myself faster why Microsoft hasn't shut down wzor's site than BA. I mean: BA is for the old betas, and linking to new ones, Wzor is for new leaking.

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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 9:36 pm 
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Microsoft really only care about counterfeiting or piracy for profit and have better things to do than waste massive amounts of time and money threatening potential customers for little to no return. Though they will send out DMCA notices as a matter of course, especialy if the sites state they will honor the requests of the copyright holder. If only the movie and music industry were so smart.

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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Fri Jul 17, 2009 10:14 pm 
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zeehonden_3 wrote:
Thank you andy!

I think I would ask myself faster why Microsoft hasn't shut down wzor's site than BA. I mean: BA is for the old betas, and linking to new ones, Wzor is for new leaking.

Isn't Wzor Russian? Typically, Russian copyrights and rules are pretty lax.


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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2009 5:05 am 
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J.Byrne wrote:
Is illegal though, just need to read the EULA's in the ISO's to see that.

*Not that I, the majority of this forum or Microsoft themselves seem to give a crap.


And here lies the problem. The default Microsoft EULA for example is completely illegal in Sweden, so it's null and void as far as the law dictates. So if one would make a case of a betas legality then the EULA would not be a problem. And in Sweden no agreement is valid unless it's either written or voice recorded, so by mere clicking an "OK" button or breaking a seal will not be the same as the user agreeing to any agreement.

As for betas it's a mixed bag in my honest opinion. Arguing one side I would say that ALL non-public betas are illegal since they are after all the property (in the majority of BA's betas) of Microsoft. So anything that isn't meant for the public would be a crime to use.... BUT it could also be argued that the crime is only of the leaker and not any second hand user. Sure you don't have any license to use the beta, but the crime would be insignificant. Much like someone stealing a candy bar and giving it to you. Sure it would be a crime for you to accept it but the crime would not be upheld in any court of law. And considering that even the betas have a trial period of sorts makes it only so much more doubtful.

On the other hand all betas are unfinished softwares, and most of them has trial functionality embedded. So in a sense it's a shareware/trialware piece of software built for testing. The software is incomplete, has no support by the manufacturer and is not sold anywhere. So in the end it's up to you really if you want to take any risks. As a private user the risk of you getting caught by using a beta software privately is in all its practicality non-existent. It's tougher for people and organisations (such as BA) that freely distributes these betas to a large group of people. In those cases it's really up to the owner of the software (Microsoft etc) to decide if it's worth the time, effort and money to start a process to halt one of many sources of incomplete and limited software.

As for my own opinion I think betas are a great way for software manufacturers to get free advertisement of their products, not to mention free beta testing (even unreported bugs are still reported by heavy discussion on the net) and awareness of potentially bad features currently into development. And as for many companies (such as Apple) it also generates a lot of hype that may affect the future sales in a positive way.

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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2009 6:15 am 
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mrpijey wrote:
J.Byrne wrote:
Is illegal though, just need to read the EULA's in the ISO's to see that.

*Not that I, the majority of this forum or Microsoft themselves seem to give a crap.


And here lies the problem. The default Microsoft EULA for example is completely illegal in Sweden, so it's null and void as far as the law dictates. So if one would make a case of a betas legality then the EULA would not be a problem. And in Sweden no agreement is valid unless it's either written or voice recorded, so by mere clicking an "OK" button or breaking a seal will not be the same as the user agreeing to any agreement.

OVH's servers are in France right? Whats the EULA's legal standing in France?


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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2009 8:06 am 
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J.Byrne wrote:
OVH's servers are in France right? Whats the EULA's legal standing in France?


Some UK, some France iirc


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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2009 11:03 am 
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They are all in France. However I think the law is whichever country the server is in, not where the owner is. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2009 11:59 am 
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Andy wrote:
They are all in France. However I think the law is whichever country the server is in, not where the owner is. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.


I'm pretty sure thats the former - maybe thats why TPB kept on trying to buy Sealand


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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Mon Jul 27, 2009 2:42 am 
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It's illegal, just look at the Pre-release EULAs. But MS usually don't give a [censored], they only do that if you release the RTM build (ahem* 7600 on the BA server?*ahem)

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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Mon Jul 27, 2009 8:50 am 
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PortalCake wrote:
It's illegal, just look at the Pre-release EULAs. But MS usually don't give a [censored], they only do that if you release the RTM build (ahem* 7600 on the BA server?*ahem)


Which is perfectly legal (to forum rules) to be there.
You should also quote that it's build 16384!, 16385 is RTM. :wink:

What do you think about Vista:
This build is also here: 6000.16385, while 6000.16386 is not because it is RTM.

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 PostPost subject: Re: Beta's Legal Status        Posted: Thu Jul 30, 2009 1:37 am 
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Microsoft really only care about counterfeiting or piracy for profit and have better things to do than waste massive amounts of time and money threatening potential customers for little to no return.


Right, not to mention most of these betas are not nearly stable enough to use as a primary OS as they still have glaring flaws, missing features and are clearly not finished. Even the OSes that get released to the public end up needing hundreds of patches to fix flaws that weren't discovered during the testing period.

Chances are you are running the betas in a VM and the host OS that you are using for day-to-day activities would be the focus.


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