Chinese government jails XP bootleggers

A Chinese court has jailed four people for spreading their "Tomato Garden" computer software, which is a bootlegged version Windows XP.

According to the state news agency Xinhua it is China's biggest software piracy case. In 2004 Hong Lei created the downloadable "Tomato Garden Windows XP" software which allowed users to access the OS. The software crippled the programme's authentication and certification barriers, allowing users unrestricted access to the popular Microsoft software.

Hong and one accomplice were sentenced to three-and-a-half years in jail while two others received two years in jail each. The software was available on, which made its earnings from advertisements on the site.

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