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posted by Fnord666 on Monday February 19 2018, @08:15AM   Printer-friendly
from the don't-stand-in-the-way-of-profits dept.

Electronics recycler Eric Lundgren was convicted of conspiracy and copyright infringement for his efforts regarding refurbishing old PCs. His sentence would have been 15 months in prison and a $50,000 fine except that he was granted an emergency stay of the sentence by a federal appeals court. Now his appeal is pending before the 11th Circuit though it has not yet been scheduled.

[...] McGloin also testified that Microsoft charges computer refurbishers about $25 for a new license and copy of the software but didn't differentiate that from what was done by Lundgren, who was not making a new copy of the software and intended his restore discs only for computers that were already licensed.

[...] Lundgren called his own expert witness, Glenn Weadock, an author of numerous software books who testified for the government in a major antitrust case against Microsoft that was resolved in 2001. Weadock was asked, "In your opinion, without a code, either product key or COA [Certificate of Authenticity], what is the value of these reinstallation discs?"

"Zero or near zero," Weadock said.

He should have listened to the experts like Ken Starks of Reglue. However, no mention was made by The Washington Post article about whether he or the court was aware that he could have improved the situation all the way around by simply upgrading the refurbished PCs to GNU/Linux instead of using a system that is always showing new ways to cause problems. The local LUG could well host an evening event with him as guest of honor to show how to improve the users' situation while staying out of jail.

Source : Eric Lundgren, 'e-waste' recycling innovator, faces prison for trying to extend life span of PCs


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  • (Score: 5, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 19 2018, @11:11AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 19 2018, @11:11AM (#640051)

    Each disc would be sold to an end user.

    This.

    When you buy a new PC, it usually comes with a restore CD. Or used to, anyway. Of course with a refurbished PC, those CD's have been lost long ago, so the refurbisher went out and had a stack of new restore CDs made to sell with the refurbished PCs.

    Apparently, Microsoft managed to convince a judge that once you lose the original restore CD, you should buy a new Windows license, rather than downloading the restore CD image from Dell and re-using the license key from the sticker on the computer.

    (The article specifically says that computers with no license sticker would be used for parts, rather than getting a new OS image).

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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by MostCynical on Monday February 19 2018, @11:19AM

    by MostCynical (2589) on Monday February 19 2018, @11:19AM (#640052) Journal

    Microsoft don't like that "sold" bit, unless it is them doing the selling.

    --
    "I guess once you start doubting, there's no end to it." -Batou, Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex