Having lived through the days of Lenslok, colour code cards, those bloody stupid wheel things, dongles that exploded (literally) and dodgy "use track 81" protection systems, I really do get annoyed at the likes of intrusive protection. I don't have a problem with companies needing to protect their product, but the use of the unique code system (which is pretty much the same as the MS activation code) does take the biscuit.
Why can't companies use the non-intrusive system Clares had for WimpBASIC? It should be simple enough for VA as not only do you have the top layer (RISC OS), but all the garbage Windross provides. Gets around the activation code crap. If an extra step is required, provide something on the CD which generates a number based on the BCA are of the disc.