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Pirated Windows on an ATM?

Apparently sighted in Russia, with photo appearing on the blog, this ATM has stopped working and displays a warning that the copy of Windows needs activation.

Now this doesn't necessarily mean the bank in question (VTB) is running unlicensed operating systems on its ATMs, though that could be the case. Its more likely, though, that the bank needs to work on its software image deployment practices. 

The ATM seems to be running Windows XP, which isn't that unusual these days, with the Microsoft OS having supplanted the now unsupported (antique) OS/2 from IBM as the standard operating system for ATMs. When the new OS is a flavour of Windows Embedded, designed for specific hardware devices, I guess this makes sense.

But what makes less sense to me is that some ATM manufacturers actually deployed the full multi-purpose Windows XP operating system in their hardware. Seems like overkill to me, and I suspect that common sense has prevailed and the Embedded version now predominates.

I've seen some reports of Linux-based ATMs operating in Brazil and Switzerland, and a new biometric Linux-based ATM pilot in some of India's rural regions.

Has anyone else seen new ATMs running on anything other than a flavour of Windows, or has Microsoft got this market stitched up completely? 



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Elton Cane

Elton Cane

Digital product delivery

News Corp Australia

Member since

16 Feb 2007



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