Windows Genuine Advantage Service Outage

Looks like Microsoft has actually confirmed problems with Windows Genuine Advantage in this message that talks about a service outage, thanks PC Doctor,

Earlier this week a server on the backend of the WGA service experienced a bug that resulted in a temporary outage. As a result, some systems were incorrectly flagged as being non-genuine, and we want to confirm for those who contacted us about this that it was indeed an error. The WGA team apologizes for any disruption this may have caused for our customers. The bug that caused this issue was identified and fixed within twenty four hours of being discovered.

Here are the steps to fix this:

  1. Delete the data.dat file from C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Windows Genuine Advantage\data (The drive letter will depend on where the OS was installed)

  2. Revisit http://www.microsoft.com/genuine/downloads/validate.aspx to confirm whether the machine is genuine.
  3. Run wgatray.exe /b from the command line to ensure that the latest validation is updated for WGA Notifications. This command may be absent from the user?s machine and should not be considered an error. Please ensure that this is run as an Administrator. A reboot may be required to remove all non-genuine notifications.

They also created a kb document to help explain and fix this problem, Windows XP-based computers that were installed by using a Volume License product key might be marked as non-genuine, which has instructions to fix it manually, automated or with a script.

Other articles about WGA on this site:
Windows Vista and Windows Server Longhorn to reduce Piracy
Windows Genuine Advantage False Positives
How to Remove Windows Genuine Advantage Notifications