There has been some confusion following the announcement by Microsoft that it will be releasing Windows 10 this summer and providing it for free to all users of its last couple of verions of its OS.
The software giant has indicated that it will be releasing the next version of its OS this summer, which is slightly earlier than had been expected with most observers expecting an autumn release.
The details of the launch plans were revealed by Microsoft OS chief Terry Myserson in a blog post that stated the launch would be a major global effort: "We continue to make great development progress and shared today that Windows 10 will be available this summer in 190 countries and 111 languages."
Back in January Microsoft announced that users of Windows 7, 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1 would be given Windows 10 as a free upgrade for the first year after it was released.
Where the confusion has emerged is around reports that suggest the free upgrade will be a blanket offer to all versions of Windows, including pirated versions, raising the prospect of a mass amnesty of sorts.
In an interview with Reuters Myerson seem to suggest that the free upgrade would apply to genuine and non-genuine Windows users.
Myserson's blog post didn't really touch on the subject but wire reports have made the connection and been describing the move as a positive one for pirates that now might be a ble to come in from the cold.
If the software were to be made available to pirates, even on a limited basis of one year, it could have the potential to have a serious impact on the amount of illegal software consumed.
The piracy rate in the UK has gone down slightly in the past few years but is still close to being one in four of every products used and costs the channel and the creative industries millions in lost revenue.