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XP SP2 Torrent Shows Legal P2P's Promise

simoniker posted about 10 years ago | from the come-get-some dept.

The Internet 529

Downhill Battle writes "With Congress debating new legislation that would ban p2p networks (along with other innovations and beloved products), we thought it was important to demonstrate the huge potential of p2p software to benefit the public. So now at you can get Windows XP SP2 via BitTorrent." Update: 08/09 21:10 GMT by S : As commenters note, you can also get XP SP2 from Microsoft's site, but it's explained: "DO NOT CLICK DOWNLOAD IF YOU ARE UPDATING JUST ONE COMPUTER: A smaller, more appropriate download will be available soon on Windows Update."

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The real story here (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923248)

Someone wasted money to buy the domain.

Filthy subscriberss stole our FROSTY PISS (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923250)

Dids we getss the FROSSTY PISSes like we wantss?

No thanks (-1, Offtopic)

JHromadka (88188) | about 10 years ago | (#9923255)

I'm too busy downloading the 10.4 Tiger preview. :)

I'll Do it anyway (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923259)

Did you know that IBM tells users not to install Windows XP update []

'sudo' is not recognized as an internal or external command,
operable program or batch file.

Ok maybe I wont.

Actually (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923319)

As a subscriber, I can tell you that story was supposed to go live, but was replaced by this one a few minutes ago instead.

Re:Actually (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923392)

So its kindof a joke with the title I'll Do it anyway having a couple of meanings huh.

Re:I'll Do it anyway (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923363)

That is the silliest article I have ever read. We constantly are telling people not to do their own updates - not just for Windows but everything. Every little patch gets tested thoroughly before being deployed so why would we test a service pack? Next thing you know there will be an article saying that IBM tells employees not to install new hardware on their machines.

Re:I'll Do it anyway (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923365)

IBM is telling employees not to install the patch, due to known conflicts with business-critical software that they use. They are not recomending that general users don't upgrade. If you're gonna link the artical, RTFA.

Re:I'll Do it anyway (3, Insightful)

MindStalker (22827) | about 10 years ago | (#9923407)

Well duh, they want to make sure it works with all their software. I'm sure they are mostly talking about their close customers who rely on IBM for their business, and IBM can't be sure everythig will be smooth. But seriously this is the same as me telling all my office not to download and install it personally to wait untill I have tested it and I will deploy it for them

Informative? slight correction: (2, Insightful)

bach37 (602070) | about 10 years ago | (#9923409)

..."IBM tells users not to install Windows XP update"

IBM told its INTERNAL employee users to wait before updating.

Re:I'll Do it anyway (5, Insightful)

bob670 (645306) | about 10 years ago | (#9923446)

How does this get modded as informative? I'll be the first to burn MS as the stake, but IBM isn't rolling out because they failed to udpate thier OWN INTERNAL APPS, not becaue there is something wrong with SP2.

Put that in your pipe (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923265)

You Cock-Smoking Teabaggers.

Now, really... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923269)

...would I want to download a Windows operating system upgrade from an unknown source? Why not just wait for Windows Update?

Re:Now, really... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923301)

Why wait? Get it Here :) []

Re:Now, really... (0, Redundant)

hawkbug (94280) | about 10 years ago | (#9923328)

Is this real?? Can someone verify this is right?

Re:Now, really... (2, Insightful)

nacturation (646836) | about 10 years ago | (#9923431)

Well, unless someone hacked into and uploaded a trojan, I think it's the real deal.

Re:Now, really... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923443)

I just downloaded this in the prevous /. article. Unless MS really wants to f*ck people over, the md5 hash is the same as on the SP2 BT's site.

Re:Now, really... (5, Informative)

riscthis (597073) | about 10 years ago | (#9923447)

Yes -- it's linked from here: milyId=049C9DBE-3B8E-4F30-8245-9E368D3CDB5A&displa ylang=en []

Although Microsoft would prefer people that only need to install on a single machine wait for it to be pushed via Windows Update, which will be a considerably smaller download specific for your OS version.

Nope. (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923449)

No its a fake. Microsoft is putting out a trojan 270MB (or so) .EXE on their website.

Watch out!

Re:Now, really... (3, Informative)

Bishop (4500) | about 10 years ago | (#9923458)

As seen on Ars Technica [] it is legit [] .

Re:Now, really... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923331)

All MS patches/service packs have an automatic CRC check routine before installation. If it installs it is from a valid source, i.e. MS.

you can download it from microsoft now (1, Informative)

Neophytus (642863) | about 10 years ago | (#9923387)

You can download it now from Microsoft [] . This isn't the streamlined version you would get from the automatic updater, but is official all the same.

Go Team Go! (5, Insightful)

Short Circuit (52384) | about 10 years ago | (#9923271)

It definately helps to have object examples of good, legal use.

Though I'm not sure if the XP SP2 torrent is legal...What's in the EULA about redistribution?

Who cares? EULAs aren't enforceable anyway. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923344)

Re:Go Team Go! (2, Interesting)

NanoGator (522640) | about 10 years ago | (#9923349)

"It definately helps to have object examples of good, legal use."

It could totally backfire if MS says "we dint give you permission to do that." MS has made murmurs before about limiting SP's to only verified serial #s. (I don't remember what the outcome of that was. A refresher would be appreciated.) If the SP's given out when MS is trying to control it, then you'll have made MS an enemy of it. Bad news.

Bit risky if you ask me.

Uh...Legal? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923273)

Do you have Microsoft's permission to redistribute the service pack?


Surprise! It's illegal.

Re:Uh...Legal? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923379)

If you don't agree with a EULA, then it's not enforceable.

I don't agree with Microsoft's EULA. Therefore, I can distribute copies only to people who also disagree with it.

Re:Uh...Legal? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923421)

You do not have permission from the copyright holder to distribute the file, therefore you are in violation of the law.

Re:Uh...Legal? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923424)

It has nothing to do with the EULA. Copyright law gives MS control over the distribution of the service pack. By law, if MS doesn't say you can distribute it, you can't distribute it. No EULA required.

Slashdotted ? (1)

IanBevan (213109) | about 10 years ago | (#9923274)

Well, I got to the website OK. However, trying their torrent link results in "Timeout connecting to peers" :-( I tried it several times, all the same. Can somebody with some under-the-hood knowledge tell us, is it possible to slashdot a torrent link ?

Re:Slashdotted ? (5, Informative)

barcodez (580516) | about 10 years ago | (#9923339)

Yes, it is entirely possible to slashdot a torrent. Each client polls a central server (or in more modern clients one of a number of servers) for new hosts and to update the server on its progress. If this server can't service all the polls from all the clients then a torrent has been ./ed.

Re:Slashdotted ? (2, Informative)

ViolentGreen (704134) | about 10 years ago | (#9923354)

I believe that it is possible to overload a tracker. That sounds like it might be what you are experiencing.

Re:Slashdotted ? (1)

ewithrow (409712) | about 10 years ago | (#9923367)

Any given torrent must have a tracker to coordinate all the peers. If the tracker goes down then new people trying to download the file won't know what peers are available to download from. Usually it doesn't take much resources at all to run the tracker, however it is possible to slashdot it.

It may just be down temporarily, so I would recommend waiting a while.

Re:Slashdotted ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923420)

i wondered this about a torrent before? would be v. interested to know the answer to this. also bittorrent seems to max out in terms of efficiency above a certain number of clients? at least it seems to.

WOW (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923275)

What a nice thing! I just can't believe it! What a chance the open-source is there!

This would be exciting.. (4, Interesting)

NanoGator (522640) | about 10 years ago | (#9923278)

... if it wasn't for the fact that MS's hosting services have totally blown away every connection I've thrown at it. I've seriously gotten 500KB/s from them before. (Bytes, not bits.)

Re:This would be exciting.. (1)

nacturation (646836) | about 10 years ago | (#9923308)

Should've used a faster connection. I've seen up to 3MB/s on some downloads, and that was on an old Pentium Pro system.

On another note, the torrent file's MIME type on the site is set to plain text. They might want to fix that for browsers which are actually compliant... :)

403'd! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923356)

The server is b0rked. It gives 403's :P

Re:This would be exciting.. (2, Informative)

Zackbass (457384) | about 10 years ago | (#9923370)

I DLd SP2 this morning at speeds between 250 and 500KBps. On a good days I've gotten >700KBps on single downloads. Good luck slashdotting Microsoft.

Re:This would be exciting.. (1)

brett42 (79648) | about 10 years ago | (#9923413)

I was thinking the same thing, then I read the article. MS is allowing 'only' 2.5 million downloads per day for the first few weeks.

Of course, it's probable that someone else would have made a torrent of the service pack anyway, and this is just a PR thing, but it might be useful.

What about last week? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923280)

I know a lot of people got the DOOM 3 trailer via torrent.

Re:What about last week? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923307)

not to mention the full version of the game....before it was released... heh

I see no point in P2P (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923281)

P2P is useless technology and SHOULD be banned as it only SUPPORTS piracy. Intellectual property needs to be paid for and its creators given their monetary due.

Re:I see no point in P2P (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923341)

kiss by torrent butt....
and while youre at it.. kiss the other 500 butts that are in my torrent... and while u are at that... go screw yourself in front of Macy's window!

Re:I see no point in P2P (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923359)

Oh and how about banning librarys, as they only server to allow people to look at copyrighted material.

You know what happens when people read books right? They get knowledge. Knowledge is power, power corrupts, corruption is crime, crime doesn't pay. OMG the United States economy can be blamed on librarians!

A Good First Step (5, Interesting)

wackysootroom (243310) | about 10 years ago | (#9923285)

That's great and all, but lawmakers won't listen until MS or is using Bittorrent themselves to distribute updates.

My prediction is that MS will do the "embrace and extend" thing with bittorrent once they catch on to it.

Uh yeah (1)

mlerner (601733) | about 10 years ago | (#9923289)

It's kinda pointless now, SP2 is now up for public download on

A nice idea... (2, Interesting)

Compholio (770966) | about 10 years ago | (#9923291)

but one thing to point out:

Download Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2)
Downloads require BitTorrent: Windows, Mac, Linux.

Why would I want to download SP2 for Mac or Linux? Normally I could so downloading it on another machine if you don't have access to the internet where you want to install it. Honestly, if the machine you want to install it on doesn't have access to the internet then why do you need the security changes of SP2?

Re:A nice idea... (4, Informative)

garcia (6573) | about 10 years ago | (#9923306)

I don't use my Windows machine for BitTorrent. I prefer the console client that comes with Linux.

btdownloadcurses --url "$URL" --max_upload_rate 5

That way I can start the download to my home machine at work and still have it done by the time I get there.

Re:A nice idea... (1)

Sasha Slutsker (799836) | about 10 years ago | (#9923310)

Maybe they have a Windows and Linux machine. The Linux machine is on a cable connection and the Windows machine is on the dial-up connection. The person downloads it on the Linux machine and installs it on the Windows machine.

Re:A nice idea... (-1, Offtopic)

77Punker (673758) | about 10 years ago | (#9923322)

Having SP2 just makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside. I always like having the latest version, just becuase chicks love it.

Re:A nice idea... (1)

yamla (136560) | about 10 years ago | (#9923324)

Faster pipe at work, on my Linux machine, than I have at home with my Windows XP machine.

Re:A nice idea... (1)

Nasarius (593729) | about 10 years ago | (#9923333)

Why would I want to download SP2 for Mac or Linux?

I dual boot, though I'm usually in Linux. I downloaded with QTorrent a couple days ago and stuck it on my FAT partition. Then I booted into Windows, installed it, and promptly went back to Gentoo :)

Re:A nice idea... (1)

Scottarius (248487) | about 10 years ago | (#9923337)

So you can install it BEFORE you connect it to the internet, that way your box doesn't get compromised while your downloading the update.

Re:A nice idea... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923346)

You want your machine secure before putting it on the net?

Scenario: I'm building a new XP workstation, I download XP2 onto my powermac, burn it onto a cd before putting my XP Workstation on the 'net.

Re:A nice idea... (2, Insightful)

bearl (589272) | about 10 years ago | (#9923377)

You see, there are these things called "Internal Networks," and some of these "Internal Networks" have "computers" on them that can be prevented from connecting to the "External Network."

But seriously, you might for example, use a Linux box to retrieve the update, then post it to an internal location, say a shared network drive, and have all the little XP machines get it from there.

I guess the point is that it doesn't have to be used by the machine that first downloads it.

Re:A nice idea... (2, Interesting)

NanoGator (522640) | about 10 years ago | (#9923428)

"Why would I want to download SP2 for Mac or Linux?"

So you can be another host and help with the cause?

"Honestly, if the machine you want to install it on doesn't have access to the internet then why do you need the security changes of SP2?"

Sadly, if you install XP and get it on the net, the odds are good you'll pick up a worm. So.. disconnect from the net, download the updates elsewhere.

Re:A nice idea... (1)

babyrat (314371) | about 10 years ago | (#9923455)

Honestly, if the machine you want to install it on doesn't have access to the internet then why do you need the security changes of SP2?

Cuz there's more than just security fixes in SP2? Like Bluetooth support (well, that's kind of network stuff, but not generally internet type network stuff).

Or perhaps the windows machine isn't on the network until it gets the security fixes but will be shortly after?

Unless MS Officially Seeded the Torrent... (4, Insightful)

Rude Turnip (49495) | about 10 years ago | (#9923293)

Then this does not show how P2P can be used in a legal manner...INFINITELY USEFUL--yes!, but not legal.

Re:Unless MS Officially Seeded the Torrent... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923450)

Did the copyright owners say that copying their service patch file isn't allowed?

As a practical matter, I'd think Microsoft wouldn't mind that people are distributing their file for them.

The stigma of P2P (2, Insightful)

lake2112 (748837) | about 10 years ago | (#9923297)

Thanks to Napster and other infamous P2P networks it will be next to impossible for the bad stigma of P2P networks to be lifted. Sure a SP2 torrent has some usefulness but bittorrent is not main stream enough for this website to accomplish any significant good.

Re:The stigma of P2P (1)

solive1 (799249) | about 10 years ago | (#9923369)

Good point. Also, releasing SP2 on a "mainstream" P2P such as Kazaa would probably turn it into the crap downloads that you get off Kazaa currently with "illegal" downloads of songs: poor quality, looping, missing portions of songs, etc. SP2 would probably be riddled with bugs once Kazaa got through with it. Kazaa's just one big virus, anyway...

While this is a step in the right direction for P2P, it will be largely unnoticed because of the lack of mainstream usage of torrents.

Loads of uses on legal P2P (5, Informative)

barcodez (580516) | about 10 years ago | (#9923299)

Check out The Linux Mirror Project [] for example. Which has torrents for Slackware, Slax, Fedora, Mandrake, Knoppix, Debian, Gentoo & FreeBSD

On one hand... (1, Insightful)

DragonPup (302885) | about 10 years ago | (#9923300)

...this is a very good example of how p2p can be used in a productive legal way.

On the other, I wouldn't trust any 'security' patches found on p2p networks unless the file's link came from MS's site directly. :p

Re:On one hand... (-1, Troll)

pandrijeczko (588093) | about 10 years ago | (#9923325)

On the other, I wouldn't trust any 'security' patches found on p2p networks unless the file's link came from MS's site directly.

I wouldn't trust anything with a Microsoft logo on it full stop.

Re:On one hand... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923396)

That's funny because with all the press I've been seeing lately about the reliability of XPSP2 I have trouble trusting the download _FROM_ Microsoft...

funny how that works.

Here's how it's going to work (4, Insightful)

grasshoppa (657393) | about 10 years ago | (#9923309)

MPAA and RIAA ( through our beloved Sen Hatch ) will outlaw p2p networks.

We'll use them anyway.

A few people will get lawsuits ( notably, those who run insecure versions on their OS that are running, in effect, an open proxy ), a few people will pay thousands of dollars, and the rest of us won't even bat an eye.

hyperbole (4, Interesting)

stratjakt (596332) | about 10 years ago | (#9923317)

While I don't agree with the INDUCE act, it doesn't ban all "P2P", it bans the setup of networks explicitly for exchanging pirated materials.. Ie; Kazaa, eDonkey.. Don't make yourself look like fools defending them, yeah there's some token 0.0001% of content that's legal on them.. Everyone knows that they're for downloading MP3s and DivX's and warez.

I don't see any law that threatens to make it illegal to send content from one node on the network (or peer) to another node - hence, peer to peer. I've never seen bittorrent threatened when used to distribute legal content, though sites like suprnova are walking a fine line by encouraging it as a means for piracy.

Complain, get active.. That's great. But dont exagerate or you wind up making a fool of yourself. If you want to write your congressperson or senator, do so with lucid well-thought arguments, not a bunch of "slippery slope" and hysterical dystopian visions of the future.. That, at most, gets chuckled at before crumpled and pitched into the can.

Re:hyperbole (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923444)

If Senator Orrin "Disney" Hatch wasn't interested in the slippery slope, he would have noticed that we have laws that make the current usage of Kazaa illegal already.

Going after the providers of the service is hypocritical to the nth degree, and counterproductive.

We don't outlaw gun manufacturers, although the overwhelming usage is for criminal purposes. We don't outlaw baseball bats, even though they can be used to beat somebody to a bloody pulp. We don't even outlaw cigarettes, even though we know they only have negative side effects.

Remind me again why Kazaa is such a threat to society that it needs to be treated differently?

Get it direct from Microsoft (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923323)

You can now get it directly from Microsoft [] .

Re:Get it direct from Microsoft (1)

mccalli (323026) | about 10 years ago | (#9923418)

Interesting. On the page you get by following the parent's link:

"DO NOT CLICK DOWNLOAD IF YOU ARE UPDATING JUST ONE COMPUTER: A smaller, more appropriate download will be available soon on Windows Update."

'More appropriate'? Are they just talking about installing only the missing patches through Windows Update, or is there likely to be anything genuinely different about it?

I'm downloading from the link above anyway - I have family on dial-up and intend to burn this to CD and post it up. Still, interested in the paragraph above.


Re:Get it direct from Microsoft (1)

bach37 (602070) | about 10 years ago | (#9923459)

MS should have included a torrent link of their own....

Congress versus BitTorrent? (4, Insightful)

ubiquitin (28396) | about 10 years ago | (#9923326)

One thing that any law must possess in order to be a law is that it can be enforced. You can't rule that breathing air is illegal because the law enforcement couldn't follow the law and still make it take effect. How could Congress ever enforce a BitTorrent ban? Copying certain types of data (terrorism communications or child pornography) can be limited and the enforcement of these sorts of transgressionsn is relatively routine now, but in the absence of enforceability, don't look for anti-BitTorrent legislation in the near future. Larry Rosen is right, there is reason to be optimistic about the ability for law to protect our freedoms.

Linux does this too (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923338)

Linux distros have been distributed via BitTorrent for a while now and it's already proven itself to be an amazing thing.

Kidding ourselves. (1)

Mullen (14656) | about 10 years ago | (#9923342)

Let's stop kidding ourselves on this subject. Yes, there are some legit uses for P2P networks, but let's just admit that 99% of the useage of P2P networks is Porn, MP3's and Warez.

Re:Kidding ourselves. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923468)

And what percentage of the internet in general is used for Porn, MP3's and Warez? And does being one of those three make it non-legit by default?

It's downhillbattle (2, Interesting)

doofusclam (528746) | about 10 years ago | (#9923343)

They're just showing legal uses of p2p with something that could do with the help - 250mb per Windows installation is a lot of bandwidth. BitTorrent is an ideal halfway house for getting stuff out fast and helping each other out.

Hell, it's even worth you Linux users seeding the torrent. It'll mean your dsl connection gets less hammered with 0wn3d Windows boxes doing port scans.

Good on them - a lot of publicity for not much cash. Nice.

Re:It's downhillbattle (1)

pandrijeczko (588093) | about 10 years ago | (#9923384)

Hell, it's even worth you Linux users seeding the torrent. It'll mean your dsl connection gets less hammered with 0wn3d Windows boxes doing port scans.

Nah, sorry. We're too busy growing like a cancerour tumour on Ballmer's backside to have the time for that.

Re:It's downhillbattle (1)

doofusclam (528746) | about 10 years ago | (#9923415)

So you would rather stick one in the eye of Ballmer knowing that this will hurt the wider community?


Re:It's downhillbattle (1)

pandrijeczko (588093) | about 10 years ago | (#9923467)

So you would rather stick one in the eye of Ballmer knowing that this will hurt the wider community?

Since, by this statement, you admit Windows fallibilities, how about you upgrading to Linux then?

And, no I would rather drink beer from Ballmer's skull...

Torrents are obviously useful. (2, Insightful)

GoNINzo (32266) | about 10 years ago | (#9923351)

There are many linux distributions and gaming videos that are using torrents for fast distribution. A great example was the doom 3 video that came out shortly before the release. I was getting 180KB on my T1 on download.

However, I don't think corporate america will embrace it entirely until another major corporation uses it. I suspect that the revamp of Steam to use bittorrent like behavior might be a great example of a bad system being replaced with a good system. Though I'm sure a few people will be upset that their bandwidth is being used without their expressed permission. (The guy who made BitTorrent got hired by value to help them out.)

Either way, I think it's a bright future for us gamers. `8r) That is, assuming technology problems are treated as technology problems, rather than criminal problems. Just because someone can use a BetaMAX machine to copy a tape doesn't mean they will...

Re:Torrents are obviously useful. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923423)

Only 180?! I was getting 370 kb/s on my cable pipe!

Then again, your upload speed is twice mine, but still.

Re:Torrents are obviously useful. (1)

GoNINzo (32266) | about 10 years ago | (#9923456)

yeah, my down is only half of yours (most likely) but my upload is actually 4x yours. So on slow torrents, I will usually go faster than you. Then again, I don't have a poorly designed network that does drops when I start exceeding my upstream! heh (I have a cable modem at home and damn do I hate it...)

Banning P2P entirely (4, Insightful)

ShatteredDream (636520) | about 10 years ago | (#9923357)

I haven't actually seen anything that suggests that P2P protocols themselves might be banned, rather that certain companies will get their asses handed to them. BitTorrent has been often use illegitimately, but it is not billed as a big time file sharing network a la Kazaa. The fact that it is often used by geeks for legitimate purposes means that any judge who ruled against it on a "reasonable person" basis would probably get slapped down on appeals.

Which brings me to the next reason I'm not too concerned with this bill. A reasonable person standard on something like this is highly subjective. There is no general public opinion upon which a consistent, long term reasonable person standard could be based. The SCOTUS will probably realize that and slap it down as unconstitutionally vague.

Seriously people, if ya'll want to really make the copyright cartels eat crow, go out and buy music from non-RIAA labels like Century Media. If you've never heard of Lacuna Coil, they're an Italian metal band that is getting really big thanks to a stint on Headbangers' Ball and touring with Ozzfest. They're damn good AND not RIAA affiliated according to the RIAA Radar site. Century Media has a lot of affiliates, and chances are that if you buy European or underground metal, it's not RIAA affiliated.

Don't pirate software or movies, at least not openly. If you're going to do movies, go to blockbuster, rent a new release, rip it, use dvd2one or dvdshrink and burn it to a DVD-R instead of fueling the propaganda about file sharing networks. Afterall, if rental rates increase, they have no excuse that people aren't using legitimate means to watch movies ;)

not really. (1)

poison_reverse (647609) | about 10 years ago | (#9923362)

legislators seemingly wont care if there are some legitimate files out there being shared via torrent.I'd bet that if u looked at ISP logs that you would see the vast majority of torrent traffic is for illegal files. As long as there are some illegal warez being shared its still illegal and the underlying tool for distrubution (see bittorrent) will be blamed for the propagation of said illegal files.

Exception rather than the rule (2, Interesting)

Shriek (261178) | about 10 years ago | (#9923373)

This is of course a perfect example of legal use for P2P, but it could be argued that it is only one such example and shouldn't count for much. I say let P2P remain in its current form and keep legislators from hindering it. In the end it might take a company like Microsoft to put pressure on law makers not to outlaw P2P.

Oh, good thinking! (4, Insightful)

Otter (3800) | about 10 years ago | (#9923382)

How do you demonstrate that P2P isn't just a warez app? Show how readily it distributes Windows outside of Microsoft's normal channels!

Please note that:

1) I'm a user and understand that legal P2P exists.

2) I oppose restrictions on P2P and am perfectly happy to rely on the RIAA suing violators instead.

3) I understand that this is a patch, not Windows itself. (Although is this distribution within the rights of the EULA? I certainly hope they've made sure it is.)

But as PR, this seems like a really poor idea.

Congressional oversight (flamebait) (1)

teidou (651247) | about 10 years ago | (#9923394)

I am frightened of Congressional regulation. Everybody I know thinks they know what it means, but they all have different definitions. Does anybody know how congress will define P2P? Will P2P be defined as a program that a "user" uses to "share" content? An evil computer that is configured so it can "download" and "upload" at the same time?

When the jackbooted thugs knock at your door, will you be able to explain why your system is running Apache and Mozilla at the same time?

- teidou

What's missing is authentication (3, Interesting)

TommydCat (791543) | about 10 years ago | (#9923398)

P2P networks really need to figure a way for an author to cyptographically sign a file as "authentic", like you can sign email with a PGP signature. This would be another step in giving P2P nets "legitimacy".

Currently there are all sorts of miscreants out there doing unspeakable acts to poor defenseless setup.exe files which will burn the end-user and turn them off to P2P.

If there existed a secure, integrated/easy way to verify that this XPSP2 fileset came from Microsoft without tampering (publishing MD5 sums is the antithesis to easy to normal users), I would click on the .torrent or whatever without hesitation.

The authentication would rely on the Public Key Infrastructure and have chains of trust that would go back to the CA's, just like we do with SSL certs.

I like "quotes"

I just downloaded SP2 from MS... (5, Interesting)

DerProfi (318055) | about 10 years ago | (#9923401)

..and got sustained rates of over 250KB/sec. My P2P Bitborrent download (started at the same time) is still going and chugging along at a whopping 20KB/sec. I think I'll stick with Microsoft's servers.

Great, but... (2, Insightful)

Tom7 (102298) | about 10 years ago | (#9923404)

I doubt Microsoft's bandwidth will suffer from this download.

Backfire (0)

travdaddy (527149) | about 10 years ago | (#9923410)

Hm, I'm pretty sure this Bitorrent thing will backfire somehow, but I haven't smoked enough SCO-RIAA-MPAA-MS brand crack to come up with some crazy reason... So, I say go for it! I want to hear some crazy anti-P2P reason that sharing a Service Pack is bad.

When did p2p wake up? (1)

has2k1 (787264) | about 10 years ago | (#9923412)

p2p technology was revolutionised as a result of that 2001 Napster ruling. The geeks set out to think, even those who were already thinking p2p thought deeper. The result was kazaa. Though many "law makers" have cried foul again and again, I have watched p2p grow. With the latest revolution in p2p technology involving internet telephony headed by Skype very few people see where the turning road was laid. OfCourse ./ers will agree with me, the bannishing of napster was a blessing indisguise as regards to p2p technology. While the congress, RIAA, MPAA .. look at a Devil we the non sinners see the Angel in p2p

Imagine If... (5, Insightful)

emkey (717933) | about 10 years ago | (#9923434)

Imagine if the vaudeville and stage actors had gotten together back in the early 20th century and gotten motion pictures outlawed. Or if actresses and actors who had horrible speaking voices had gotten talkies outlawed in the late 1920's, etc. The recent legal trend to try to hold back technological progress is disturbing to say the least. Its also stupid and futile in the long run.

Not entirely legal p2p (2, Interesting)

MasterOfDisaster (248401) | about 10 years ago | (#9923436)

This isn't entirely legal p2p. The torrent is not seeded by microsoft, it's being hosted by a 3rd party. I don't have time to go through microsoft's EULA for SP2, but chances are - you're not allowed to distribute it. It may be "free beer", but MS can still raise a fuss about who sends it out.

I really like the idea, but... (1)

Starji (578920) | about 10 years ago | (#9923448)

I really like the idea of this, but I worry about the legality of it (like a lot of others here apparently). Distributing the patch this way might be some sort of copyright infringement. I'm curious if the site admin ever asked microsoft for their permission to do this...

Download directly from Microsoft (link included) (1)

lothar97 (768215) | about 10 years ago | (#9923454)

If the whole point is to get something that is supposed to fix WinXP, and be trustworthy, how can you guarantee what you find on BitTorrent will be legit or correct? There could be some sort of checksum verifier, but we've never seen those cracked before.

Myself, I've downloaded it directly from Microsoft [] Yes, that link works for SP2- found it on earlier. Not sure why it's not being publicized yet.

Shame MSFT haven't released SP2 yet then (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923460)

tell me again how illegally distributing a not-yet-publicly-released service pack extolls the virtues of bittorrent/P2P ?

sounds like fascism (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#9923466)

sincerely, if P2P becomes illegal in a country like the US wouldn't it suck to have more freedom in Russia?
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