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Mac OS X Registration

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When I buy something I rarely bother sending in the "registration" for it. I particularly hate it when a manufacturer refuses to warranty the product unless I register it, but I also find it intrusive when they want to collect demographic data on me, add me to some mailing list I don't care about, want to sign me up for some offer or service I've zero interest in using, or worse yet share or sell my information with third parties who then spam my inbox or send me junk mail. Which is why I usually just don't bother with product registrations.

I know you can easily bypass the Registration Screen when installing OS X, and I know some people using hacked install discs freak out if/when they accidentally send registration data to Apple (which doesn't seem to be a big no-no anyway), but I'm talking about the Retail DVD. I really do love the fact that Apple never got on board with the "activation" bull$hit Microsoft or Adobe embraced, in fact Apple should be applauded heartily for that, but I have to admit I'm still curious what data is actually being sent to Apple if you hit "send" on that OS X registration?

I know some years ago I read about some of the big software publishers had to admit they were clandestinely collecting data on users' systems without disclosure because people intercepted the packets and looked at what data was being sent when the software "phoned home." Has anyone done the same with OS X?

I've looked at the file at ~Users/"username"/Library/Assistants/Sendregistration.setup and it looks like it only holds name, company, address, and phone number. I didn't even notice AppleID in it. Is this really IT? That's ALL that gets sent to Apple when you register OS X?! It's not sending the hardware configuration? No serial numbers? No list of installed applications? Or any of the other things snoopy registrations sometimes gather up and send without telling you?

It's my understanding that only "bug reports" you CHOOSE to send to Apple would include any hardware or serial number data? So if you never send bug reports, Apple doesn't know which Mac you bought - or if you're even running OS X on Apple hardware?

Moose Tracks

Moose Tracks

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If you send nothing on OS X, then Apple knows nothing. If you send nothing on OS X server, serialnumberd will override you and check your serial number, but that's about it.

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