"This morning I reported on Vista activation and validation problems I've been hearing and reading about in the last few weeks. This afternoon I have a firsthand report.
When I installed a beta version of Acclaim's 9Dragons role-playing game (protected, apparently, by nProtect's GameGuard anti-cheating software), Vista dropped a bomb on me. A time bomb, that is. The software convinced the Windows Software Licensing service that the operating system was being tampered with, deactivating the system and starting a 72-hour countdown to "reduced functionality mode."
I was fortunate enough not to reach "reduced functionality mode." Adrian Kingsley-Hughes has an excellent image gallery showing exactly what that looks like. (Hint: not fun.)
I'm still waiting for a response from Microsoft."
Click on the link below for the full article: