How To: Disabling Windows Genuine Advantage (wgatray.exe)
Recently, one of my clients, bought 5 refurbished Dell desktops, direct from Dell. After installing their software (medical programs, its a doctors office) , and completing a reboot, I watched as every single one of the 5 systems popped up a warning with something along the lines of , ” You may be a victim of software piracy “. Well I know that part of the refurbishing process involves reinstalling a new copy of windows…so I couldn’t logically understand why the software would trigger the cd-key to now register as a non valid copy.I called Dell and once I got on the phone with a rep, I asked how this could be possible. We tried a few different methods to get it to stop, but even re-validating the key proved un-responsive. After about an hour, I figured I would just end the call on a friendly note and figure a seperate way around it.
First off, its easy to see that the process is the ‘wgatray.exe’ process. Annoying as shit, is the fact that if you end the task, it atuomatically re-appears over and over. After attempting to remove all known files from registry named ‘wgatray.exe’, I figured a reboot would finalize the removal, but lo and behold it reappears after a reboot. I assume there must be another location, or a tagfile associate with it, re-creating the wgatray.exe and slapping it back into system32 .
A quick google search later, I find that there are several locations and several files, as well as to start in safe mode in order to properly remove the warning. So heres the “how to” :
You can try this, I didn’t use this, but it basically tags the registry to a “0″ so that it just can’t enable to check for genuine windows, but personally I’d rather remove it completely. Download here
Ive read other methods, and it didn’t make to much sense, majority of them say to open task manager and disable wgatray.exe, then restart, problem is, it instantly re-appears, before you could even hit “restart”. Not only that, but restarting then entering safe mode, it wouldn’t have mattered if you disabled wgatray.exe before restarting or not, since it isnt going to load anything in safe mode that isn’t absolutely needed to run the system. Here is the easiest method:
1. Restart your computer, hit F8 before windows loading screen to go into the safe mode menu.
2. Select Safe mode (not with networking, and not with command prompt)
3. Once your in windows, goto START>RUN> type “regedit” (without the qoutation marks) and hit ENTER.
4. Goto EDIT, select FIND
5. Search for wgatray.exe, delete any reference found, (after it finds it the initial first time, just hit F3 to continue the search. Continue to delete anything it stops on.
6. Scroll all the way back up inthe registry editor, and select My Computer (one click. not two) and start a new FIND, this time were looking for Wgalogon, again, delete any references found.
7. Lastly, again, click on My computer, and start a new FIND, searching for LegitCheckControl.dll , again delete any references found.
8. Reboot and your finished, if not, you may have missed a registry entry.
BTW you should be able to continue to download Windows update (when set to automatically download an install).
This is for informative purposes only.
Here’s the latest update, as of May 23rd 2009, You need to do a broader search in regedit now, no you can’t mess anything up unless your a complete moron, Its safe to delete any of the files, just do a search after you performed the previous search listed above in regedit. Search for WGA, and delete any keys or folders with it. This should fix any of the last remaining people in XP that are still having a problem removing it. Please check my post on Vista (any version) crack, and OEM registered change, 100% validation check, I have recently updated that as well.
I also have ALL Versions of WINDOWS VISTA x86 x64, WINDOWS 7 x86 x64, Windows XP, Windows genuine bypass, and cracks, They are all located here in the blog