Many people have been asking whether pirated versions of Windows 7, and 8.1 will be eligible for the free upgrade to Windows 10. The resounding answer is, “No”.
When we can’t verify that Windows is properly installed, licensed, and not tampered with, we create a desktop watermark to notify the user. If you ever encounter this watermark on a new machine, I encourage you to return the device immediately to the retailer from whom you purchased it and request a Genuine Windows device. Non-Genuine Windows has a high risk of malware, fraud, public exposure of your personal information, and a higher risk for poor performance or feature malfunctions. Non-Genuine Windows is not supported by Microsoft or a trusted partner.
While our free offer to upgrade to Windows 10 will not apply to Non-Genuine Windows devices
What I find curious, and concerning is the, “…and not tampered with” line in this statement. For years the ability to hack Windows for any number of reasons has been one of the things that has made it a valuable operating system. Does this mean that they plan to lock down the OS so that users cannot modify it themselves? They could have stated that the Genuine Validation Tool was not modified, and yet they state that Windows itself is not tampered with.
This could simply be a case of someone not fully thinking through what they were writing, or it could mean that Windows is about to become a completely locked down platform. Having seen how Microsoft handled the last couple of years of the Windows 8 mess I can’t say that I have faith that they wouldn’t do something like this.
You can find their post here: http://blogs.windows.com/bloggingwindows/2015/05/15/genuine-windows-and-windows-10/