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9/27/2005
01:40 PM
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Microsoft Makes Re-Installing Software Easier

"Digital Locker" saves your rights management keys for downloaded software so you don't have to. That allows users to re-install purchased programs without needing to search for authorization codes.

Microsoft has opened a preview of its virtual lockbox that saves rights management keys for downloaded software, letting users re-install purchased programs without needing to search for authorization codes.

Dubbed "Digital Locker," and available from Windows Marketplace Labs, the preview has only a handful of third-party Windows titles for sale and download, but when the site and service go live, Microsoft promises "a full functionality shopping catalog" of products.

Digital Locker uses Microsoft's own Passport authentication for account access, and relies on a small utility, Digital Locker Assistant, to handle downloads. The virtual lockbox stores information about each title purchased, the licensing information associated with each program, and links to the software retailer's customer support.

Digital Locker's content and back-end management is being provided by a pair of e-commerce companies, Minnesota-based Digital River and Nebraska-based eSellerate.

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