is GL_LIGHT still limited to maximum of eight?

In my GForce 8800 yes, still 8 light.

Just don’t use glLight and use custom shader parameter if you want more light source.

Although I agree that shaders are the way to go, you should be able to use any number of lights with fixed-func you desire by enabling blending and changing the light source’s parameters for each pass. The maximum lights simply limits how many lights can affect the model in a single draw call.