What is Windows Genuine Advantage Notification?

WGA_Logo Windows Genuine Advantage is a software anti-piracy program started by Microsoft in 2005. It enforces the online validation of some of the Microsoft products. It is automatically installed if Windows Automatic Updates are enabled. If goes to the Windows Update site, it will ask you for installing this validation tool before you can select the updates from the Microsoft update website. By accepting to install this validation tool, an ActiveX component in Internet Explorer is installed.

What does it do?

If, for some reason, this tool fails to

validate your Windows, then it’ll always show you a warning that you may be a victim of software counterfeiting and that your Windows is not genuine. It will show up on your logon screen and make you wait for some seconds. And when you logon, it will just site in your status bar and will keep annoying you.

Here is the description of Windows Genuine Advantage Tool from Microsoft.

When this tool is installed, it shows up before logging on to the system

How To Remove Windows Genuine Advantage Notification (WGA)

And keeps on displaying the balloons in the status bar.

Windows Vista

How To Remove Windows Genuine Advantage Notification (WGA)

Windows XP

How To Remove Windows Genuine Advantage Notification (WGA)

What data does WGA collect?

This tool, if installed, collects the following data from the system.

  • Computer make and model
  • BIOS checksum.
  • MAC address.
  • GUID
  • Hard drive serial number.
  • Region and language settings of the operating system.
  • Operating system version.
  • PC BIOS information (make, version, date).
  • PC manufacturer.
  • User locale setting.
  • Validation and installation results.
  • Windows or Office product key.
  • Windows XP product ID.
Following three simple steps now you can get rid of the pesky and sometimes buggy Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) notifications:

1. Reboot Windows in safe mode (hold the f8 key while booting and you will get the option to boot in safe mode) and then:
2. Open Registry Editor (regedit.exe) and search for wgalogon folder and delete it. You should backup up the registry beforehand, in case somethiong goes wrong.
3. In your windows directory search for files wga* and delete them.

You are done!

Now reboot back normally and continue your work. Windows Genuine Advantage will not bother you anymore.

Note: I had previously posted a tip which requires a third-party executable. Now it is not required anymore. You can do it yourself by carefully following the guide above.

Warning: Use at your own risk. Backup everything before you do. Create a system restore point.

NOTE: If above tips won't work on you, try this WGA_REMOVER

credit to Maki for the wga_remover


  1. Maki says:

    If steps listed above won't work install a WGA Remover.

    WGA Remover

    It worked for me!

  2. thanks maki

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