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Overview of Microsoft Windows 8 19770-2 tags - get ready for pain and suffering!

In August 2012 the news hit the streets on LinkedIn discussions that the 1st Microsoft 19770-2 compliant tag was "seen in the wild".
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In PCProfile's opinion, from a customer perspective, the information provided by Microsoft supplying only the mandatory tags in Windows 8 is no better than you can extract with existing Discovery Tools.

In fact the data they provide with Windows 8 is less than what is found under any Discovery audit with all tools on the market.

Do not be fooled into thinking that tagging is going to solve your problems, now or in the near future.

There is a whole world of pain yet to be experienced with the 19770-2 tagging approach as it does not come up to expectations.

An insight into the world of pain follows;

Why are there 2 different SWID tags located in 3 folders for ONE installation of Windows 8?

Example Tag 1 is located in 2 separate folders on the PC
Folder 1 C:\ProgramData\
Folder 2 C:\Windows\WinSxS\x86_microsoft.......................

19770-2 swid tag file for Windows 8

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<software_identification_tag xmlns="http://standards.iso.org/iso/19770/-2/2009/schema.xsd">
<entitlement_required_indicator>true</entitlement_required_indicator>
<product_title>Windows 8 Release Preview</product_title>
<product_version>
<name>6.2.8400.0</name>
<numeric>
<major>6</major>
<minor>2</minor>
<build>8400</build>
<review>0</review>
</numeric>
</product_version>
<software_creator>
<name>Microsoft Corporation</name>
<regid>regid.1991-06.com.microsoft</regid>
</software_creator>
<software_licensor>
<name>Microsoft Corporation</name>
<regid>regid.1991-06.com.microsoft</regid>
</software_licensor>
<software_id>
<unique_id>Windows-8-Release-Preview</unique_id>
<tag_creator_regid>regid.1991-06.com.microsoft</tag_creator_regid>
</software_id>
<tag_creator>
<name>Microsoft Corporation</name>
<regid>regid.1991-06.com.microsoft</regid>
</tag_creator>
</software_identification_tag>

Example Tag 2 is located in separate folder to the above 2 tags
Folder 3 C:\Windows\WinSxS\x86_microsoft.......................

19770-2 swid tag file for Windows 8

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<software_identification_tag xmlns="http://standards.iso.org/iso/19770/-2/2009/schema.xsd">
<entitlement_required_indicator>true</entitlement_required_indicator>
<product_title>Windows 8 Release Preview with Media Center</product_title>
<product_version>
<name>6.2.8400.0</name>
<numeric>
<major>6</major>
<minor>2</minor>
<build>8400</build>
<review>0</review>
</numeric>
</product_version>
<software_creator>
<name>Microsoft Corporation</name>
<regid>regid.1991-06.com.microsoft</regid>
</software_creator>
<software_licensor>
<name>Microsoft Corporation</name>
<regid>regid.1991-06.com.microsoft</regid>
</software_licensor>
<software_id>
<unique_id>Windows-8-Release-Preview-with-Media-Center</unique_id>
Click thumbnail to enlarge

<tag_creator_regid>regid.1991-06.com.microsoft</tag_creator_regid>
</software_id>
<tag_creator>
<name>Microsoft Corporation</name>
<regid>regid.1991-06.com.microsoft</regid>
</tag_creator>
</software_identification_tag>
Why are there 2 different SWID tags located in 3 folders for ONE installation of Windows 8?

In order for Discovery tools to provide you, the customer, accurate results, they will need to be able to discern which specific tag they should be analysing!


.................and now the fun starts.

The Microsoft Windows 8 logo and references to Windows 8 and the software tags are all recognized as Copyright to Microsoft. They are listed here for informational purposes only.
This assessment is based on Windows 8 Release Preview version 6.2.8400.0 (major = 6 minor = 2 build = 8400) which we believe is now, or will be soon, shipping to manufacturers.

The software 19770-2 tag detail provided by Microsoft in Windows 8 desktop shows only the mandatory data. There is no optional tag elements and yet this is where the key data you will need is located

There are 7 Mandatory Elements

– Entitlement Required
– Product Title
– Product Version
– Software Creator
– Software Licensor
– Software Unique ID
– Tag Creator

and 30 Optional Elements
– Product Category
– Components of a suite
– Previous product or company names
– License Linkage Details (activation status, channel, cust type)
– etc.

The full 19770-2 schema can be located directly at http://standards.iso.org/iso/19770/-2/2009/schema.xsd
Windows 8 SWID.tags
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