Vista -- should you want it -- activation free. According to a report, there's now a cracked, full version of Vista floating around that totally circumvents that cumbersome and costly activation process. The crack supposedly stems from OEMs (and end users) that were fed up with that process, and somehow persuaded Microsoft to pull an up-up-down-down maneuver and make the OS work, sans activation. The software utilizes System-Locked Pre-Installation 2.0, embeds OEMs BIOS files (signed by Microsoft), and passes all of the company's Windows Genuine Advantage checks. Of course, maybe it's possible that the folks in Redmond care more about users adopting Vista than they care about them paying for it. Nah, probably not.
Update: According to our suave, stylish, and clearly informed readers, this hack has been floating around for some time. So for those who know, feel free to move on, otherwise; check it out, Vista activation bypassed!