How To Get Refunded on Prepackaged Vista

July 21, 2008 – 12:37 PM

Buying a PC can come along with some unwanted preinstalls. And now with Microsoft mandating that third party hardware manufacturers bundle Vista (not XP), that unwanted preinstall can include an entire OS. Given that a portion of any commercial PC’s purchase price includes funds allotted to software, XP users may find themselves forced into buying Vista even though they won’t be using it.

That is, unless they do like one user and use a simple exploit. Just don’t accept the software’s end-user license agreement (EULA).

Most of us click that “I agree” box without ever thinking twice. But what if you don’t agree with those terms and conditions? It gives you perfect fodder for going back to the computer manufacturer and demanding a refund on the software. After all, the EULA itself says to “contact the manufacturer or installer to determine their return policy for a refund or credit” if you don’t agree with its policy.

One guy used this technique to score a fat $200 check from HP before installing Linux onto his system.


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