If you spend any decent amount of time working on clients machines (especially residential ones), it wont take you long until you encounter a computer with pirate software on it. This can sometimes be just a few applications like Microsoft Office or Adobe Photoshop; or the whole operating system itself.
The question was raised in the Technibble forums about how should we deal with computers that have pirate software on them and there were many different answers. Some said they will flat out refuse to work on a computer that has pirate software on it. Others said its none of our business what a client does with their own machine and will work on it anyway.
Some said they will tell the client that they have pirated software to make them aware of it, but not lecture. Others will recommend freeware alternatives in their place.
Another issue is, what if your competitor is installing pirate copies of Windows on the computers he is selling? Should you report them since they have the price advantage and leave yourself open to revenge tactics? or just let them kill themselves off as more customers find out their copies of Windows are pirate and cannot use them once Windows Genuine Advantage is installed?
What would you do? Would you flat out refuse to work on the machine? Turn a blind eye? Tell them and work on it anyway? Is it our responsibility to tell the client?
How would you deal with a competitor who was selling computers with pirated copies of Windows? Drop us a comment.