maybe this will explain a lot . http://arstechnica.com/microsoft/news/2009/06/free-one-year-technet-plus-subscription.ars?utm_source=microblogging&utm_medium=arstch&utm_term=Main%20Account&utm_campaign=microblogging Update I am now hearing that this is part of a pilot program that is set to expire on September 30, 2009, which means it's more of a three month deal, but hey, free is free! Currently, the expiration date reads "1/1/1900" but Microsoft is working on fixing that. Update 2 When attempting to get new keys or see old ones, users are now getting the following message: "There was an error error while trying to retrieve requsted key information and we cannot process your request." It's not clear if Microsoft is cutting people off or if the requests for keys simply became overwhelming for the servers (more likely). Of course, if you already got your keys, they should still work.