Say I own a Microsoft Windows license key, but I lose it. I have no proof of purchase or anything. Can I use a keygen, and use that key to use the same software that I technically own?

I've done some research, but people seem to disagree. I would guess that my example would be legal, but using it when you don't own the product would be illegal.

I'm not only asking about just Microsoft Windows, but software in general.

  • 3
    IANAL - While you can simultaneously both "own the software" and "have no proof of purchase", if you were to get in trouble by the authorities for using a key from a keygen, to the authorities it appears as though you don't actually own the software. What would stop people from just saying "Oh, no, I bought it before"? Also, when you purchase a license for a software, you do not actually own the software, but only the license to use the software. This could mean you only own the specific license you were given, not one generated by a keygen. – GrumpyCrouton Dec 17 '19 at 14:40

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