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Windows 8 Won't Play DVDs Unless You Pay For the Media Center Pack

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the special-thanks-to-the-dvd-cca dept.

Media 734

An anonymous reader writes "You may already know that Microsoft plans to sell Windows Media Center as a separate, paid pack, but now the company has revealed that Windows 8 will also stop default support for DVD playback. You'll only be able to play DVDs and Blu-rays if you upgrade to the Media Center pack. 'Acquiring either the Windows 8 Media Center Pack or the Windows 8 Pro Pack gives you Media Center, including DVD playback (in Media Center, not in Media Player), broadcast TV recording and playback (DBV-T/S, ISDB-S/T, DMBH, and ATSC), and VOB file playback. Pricing for these Packs, as well as retail versions of Windows 8, will be announced closer to the release date. To give you some indication of Media Center Pack pricing, it will be in line with marginal costs.'" In a comment, Microsoft's Steven Sinofsky elaborates: "(marginal is small, honest, and we just haven't determined the final prices yet based on ongoing work but we are aiming for single digit dollars but we don't control the truly marginal costs). We wanted to include Media Player for everyone without everyone incurring the cost even if they don't even have an optical drive."

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Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (5, Interesting)

crazyjj (2598719) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891541)

Now I've got to pay for every damned little thing in the OS too.

What's next, is there going to be an extra $5 charge every time I change the BIOS settings? A $2 charge by the firmware when I add RAM?

It's like government. No politician has the balls for raise taxes openly and directly, so instead you get a million nickel-and-dime fees and surtaxes to annoy the shit out of you at every turn.

Just raise the price of Windows if that's what you need to do, MS. I'd much rather a Windows license go from $100 to $120 than to have a window popping up at every turn saying I need to pay for some expansion pack if I want this-or-that little feature to work.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (5, Funny)

Sigma 7 (266129) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891615)

How about $100 to get a C compiler, just so that you can write any program that isn't grindingly slow?

Get off my lawn.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (4, Informative)

Ralish (775196) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891861)

Um, Microsoft makes its C/C++ compiler available for free, along with the Windows SDK. You're probably thinking of Visual Studio, but Microsoft makes a basic version for C/C++ free as Visual C++ Express; effectively, a basic Visual Studio edition purely for C/C++ coding without the enterprise features. If you need those features, you're probably doing more than hobbyist development/basic development.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (3, Funny)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891983)

You can get Visual Studio Express with it's C compiler, for free.
You can get GCC through either MinGW or Cygwin for free.

Why would you want to pay $100? If you really want, you can give me $100 and I'll send you any of these on a CD...

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891653)

So what's new? I didn't even realize that Windows played DVDs because I had to pay $50 for DVD software for XP back when I bought my first DVD drive in the early 2000s.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (5, Insightful)

poet (8021) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891655)

This is actually a very smart move. Microsoft has to pay DVD player manufacturers to allow you to play DVDs. Here is the thing.... in the next 18 months you won't see DVD players on most laptops. Heck mine doesn't even have a CDROM. Even my media center does't use DVDs, I just play an avi file or stream from netflix/amazon.

Further, you can always use VLC. This really isn't a big deal.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891909)

Well that sucks. I like DVDs because you pay once--play forever. I won't buy a laptop or PC if it doesn't include the player.

As for $$$ for Media Center: This just gives me another reason to buy a second Windows 7 PC and store it away. First reason was Win8's lousy phone-style interface. Having to pay to play DVD or MP4 files is reason 2. (I can't wait to see surprises 3 and 4.) WIN8 will likely be the Vista of the 2010s.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (5, Insightful)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 2 years ago | (#39892013)

I suspect most manufacturers will do what they do now.

Provide you with their own player.

Really, this only affects people who install their own copies of Windows.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (2)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891965)

my media pc has an nvidia (ion1) onboard and I dualboot betwen linux for myth-tv client-side use or win7 for dvd play use.

when playing recording OTA stuff from my myth-server, this has to be linux on the client side as there is no (?) win version.

howevever, video playback is NOT as good as win7/nvidia drivers are. not quite as clean. I'm very sorry to say that but its true.

I'm not so picky these days and I stay in myth-client most of the time; but for really clean video, its reality that MS's video system is still better and their win media player (sigh) is still the best 'free' solution for judder and jitter free playback. not a great user interface but once I'm watching fullscreen, who cares. its much less important what the o/s is or the app is once the movie starts; as long as the quality on playback is there!

I hate even admitting that an MS player on MS o/s and a closed source nv driver wins, but it just does. and this is for 'easy' stuff like dvd, not even talking about bd or any HD stuff.

taking it out in win8 is a bad move, I think.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (1)

21mhz (443080) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891973)

Further, you can always use VLC.

Or buy PowerDVD, if you are really into watching BluRay with all the juicy features. Choice, without having to pay up for one of the options in any case because it's bundled with the OS, as it is in WinXP or Win7.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (5, Informative)

_avs_007 (459738) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891665)

I don't think it's that they are trying to nickel and dime you. I think they were trying to reduce cost of the base OS, by not including the licensing fees for MPEG2.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (5, Insightful)

surmak (1238244) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891773)

I don't think it's that they are trying to nickel and dime you. I think they were trying to reduce cost of the base OS, by not including the licensing fees for MPEG2.

If so, that may be a good thing if it exposes end users to the patent craziness that is screwing up the industry. As the best way to get rid of a bad law is to strictly enforce it, unbundling the MPEG licenses will annoy end users.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891791)

I think they were trying to reduce their cost of the base OS...

FTFY.

I think this is an important distinction... they're not trying to "make it cheaper for the end user"... they'll likely charge the same for the OS as they would have otherwise.

So yes... this is exactly "nickle and diming".

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (3, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891917)

Sadly, I'm pretty sure they reduct the cost but not the price. So why exactly should I rejoice? I don't own MS stock.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (4, Funny)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | more than 2 years ago | (#39892011)

"I don't think it's that they are trying to nickel and dime you."

Of course not. It's M$. They are trying to Ten and Twenty you.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (1)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891693)

OTOH I wouldnt mind selecting and paying only for features that I use
Think of it this way: A Windows 8 DVD shipped at a nominal cost or freely/low cost downloadable
Contains only the bare minimal OS
You can then pay for the stuff you want
Want Metro, pay for it
Want the games (Minesweeper,etc)? pay for them,etc..
During installation you just select the stuff you want and pay via a credit card accordingly

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (4, Funny)

xMrFishx (1956084) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891753)

Want Metro, pay for it

Oh no man, that shit so bad you get it for free...

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (2)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891785)

Well, it could be the other way around also, Metro being the base interface and Desktop coming as a paid addon

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891695)

vlc, media player classic, winamp
www.videolan.org/vlc/index.html
mpc-hc.sourceforge.net
www.winamp.com/

oh windows media centre ? people use that ?

I wonder ............oh I have to pay? no thanks... moving on with day now....

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891697)

The licensing required to play DVDs or Bluray ain't free, and MS has to cover that cost per license of Windows. Including it, especially when a lot of devices lack optical drives anymore, is just a waste of money. I would expect any device sold that includes a DVD drive or Bluray drive to also include the necessary decoders to allow DVD/Bluray playback.

Note, this isn't new. Windows XP couldn't play DVDs out of the box either unless you bought a third-party decoder. Windows Vista/7 couldn't play DVDs unless you had an edition that included Media Center, such as Home Premium or Ultimate. The original XBox wouldn't play DVDs unless you bought a remote control which covered the cost of the license.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (4, Insightful)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891711)

Now I've got to pay for every damned little thing in the OS too.

Allow me to introduce you to some operating systems that do not have such a "feature:"

  • http://www.fedoraproject.org/
  • http://www.ubuntu.com/
  • http://www.freebsd.org/
  • http://www.debian.org/
  • http://netbsd.org/
  • http://www.minix3.org/
  • http://www.reactos.org/en/index.html

...and there are many more. It is not as though there are no alternatives to Windows.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891815)

Too bad they are all complete shit on the desktop.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39892003)

I heard steam is coming soon for those distros. When that happens, then they'll be one more small step towards actually being a replacement for windows. They have a LONG way to go before they can be called that. When I can easily do the same things on those that I can on windows then I'll look at them again.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (4, Informative)

Alioth (221270) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891719)

Just download VLC already.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (4, Informative)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891797)

While Microsoft is certainly happy to nickle-and-dime for things over which they have control(Oh, you want us to flip the bit that allows you to bind to AD? $90 please.) DVD playback is arguably in a different category.

Thanks to the wonders of the DMCA, and possibly a raft of not-yet-expired MPEG-LA patents, it still costs money to legally ship a DVD decoder in the US, despite the fact that implementations of deCSS and MPEG2 are seriously old news.

Especially for the driveless consumer machines and the business masses, forking over a per-copy fee to the DVD cartel just doesn't make any sense for either MS or their customers...

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891803)

Microsoft did something very similar with the first XBOX -- you couldn't play DVDs at all unless you bought the remote. This was even before the microtransaction craze, and they did it to keep DVD licensing costs out of the price of the main unit. Given that DVD playback wasn't the primary purpose of the XBOX, it made sense.

In this case, you can make the same argument: For many users, DVD playback under Windows is completely irrelevant, so charging the licensing cost to everyone would ultimately have a negative effect on consumers.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (0)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891925)

You think they reduced the cost of Windows 8 by doing that?

If so please share whatever you are smoking. Instead they increased their profit margin.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (2)

scot4875 (542869) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891829)

You are aware that a fairly significant fee goes to the DVD consortium for every copy of Windows sold, not to mention every Mac, PS3, XBox, or other device that has the ability to play DVDs, even if that's not the primary purpose?

On its face, this isn't nearly as big a deal as people are making it out to be. If Microsoft is going to actually use this to lower the price of Windows, I have no problem with it. (Though I have no plans to purchase Windows 8 anyway) That's a pretty big "if" though, so I guess we'll have to wait and see.

As for your BIOS/RAM comparisons: not even remotely valid. No 3rd party entity gets to claim patent fees for either of those abilities.

--Jeremy

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (1)

DaMattster (977781) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891851)

This is one area where a la carte pricing just doesn't work. It may work for the airlines but not for computing. Policies like this will drive people to alternatives like Linux. This isn't the brightest move that has been made by Microsoft.

Re:Bad enough I pay for microtransactions in MMO's (1)

ffflala (793437) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891995)

What's next, is there going to be an extra $5 charge every time I change the BIOS settings? A $2 charge by the firmware when I add RAM?

SHH! For heaven's sake, please do not give them any more ideas along this line of thought.

The way the market has gone (5, Insightful)

Overly Critical Guy (663429) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891543)

The headline is trying to incite a backlash, but this is a reflection of the decline of optical drives and the rise of tablets. Apple has also gone down this path by not including optical drives in the MacBook Air. I don't find myself that concerned since it's literally been years since I watched a DVD, and all my movies are digital.

Presumably, the expense that was previously included in the cost of Windows will not be in Windows 8. I say "presumably" because I'm sure Windows 8 will still inexplicably cost over $100 or whatever.

Re:The way the market has gone (5, Insightful)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891609)

it would still be nice to view dvd .iso's ;)

ah well just download vlc. media player is a piece of shit anyways.. and the marginal costs are the license costs.

Re:The way the market has gone (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891859)

Do any of the officially-blessed-by-the-powers-that-be DVD player programs do input from ISOs? I know that every version of 'PowerDVD' that I've had the displeasure of working with doesn't, nor does WMP, even with a suitable directshow filter for DVD playback. It was my vague impression that the party line was that DVD images don't exist and certainly can't be played back like a good, honest, scratchable, optical-drive-requiring, terrible-access-speed DVD...

Re:The way the market has gone (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891899)

not without a seperate program to mount the .isos.. but anyways, if the reports weren't totally wrong win8 should be able to mount .iso's directly.

is it possible to install powerdvd so that it works??

Re:The way the market has gone (3, Insightful)

swx2 (2632091) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891805)

Yeah this is really true. I was just thinking about when was the last time I actually watched a DVD movie on my computer... and realized... i don't remember. Netflix/youtube/torrented stuff has basically replaced DVDs for all intents and purposes. While initially this move by MS sounded a little annoying, it's actually pretty reasonable.

Re:The way the market has gone (1)

DaMattster (977781) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891867)

Well, all you have to do is download VideoLAN and, voila, problem solved!

Re:The way the market has gone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891889)

The headline is trying to incite a backlash, but this is a reflection of the decline of optical drives and the rise of tablets.

Yeah, because I haven't seen an optical drive since...

Oh, sorry, actually I can see eight DVD drives just from where I'm sitting.

Re:The way the market has gone (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891913)

I think virtualization is also driving this. Because MS includes the cost in the OS license, they have to pay the DVD license themselves every time the OS is installed. They are moving more to cloud type licenses where the client can add and delete operating systems on the fly or in bulk. technically, MS has to cover the DVD licensing for that.

Also with tablets as a primary target.

I think the licensing is backwards anyway. Each DvD drive should have a license included in the cost if one is required. Or better yet, use an open standard next time.

Re:The way the market has gone (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891981)

Charging more for something which has been a basic feature of any OS on every optical drive since the CD player was invented is not a reflection fo decline of anything. It's just yet another example of how microsoft is strong-arming their captive user base.

But then again, you wouldn't say anything else as you are one of bonch's many clones, who is paid to astroturf slashdot for Microsoft and Apple.

Re:The way the market has gone (1)

pinfall (2430412) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891987)

Dell will gladly show consumers the DVD w/ playback upgrade option for $59.

And I bet they'll pass those savings on! (5, Funny)

Ndkchk (893797) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891571)

I'm sure that Microsoft will be generous and actually pass on these savings to the consumer, right? I mean, they wouldn't just cut out a feature to save some money and then keep that money for themselves, would they?

Anti trust (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891707)

Now they can;t be sued but Dvd software companies for antitrust because they give are away there dvd software for free. The courts kept telling microsoft not to bundle apps with there operation systems... so now they are finaly listening.

Re:And I bet they'll pass those savings on! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891951)

I'm sure that Microsoft will be generous and actually pass on these savings to the consumer, right? I mean, they wouldn't just cut out a feature to save some money and then keep that money for themselves, would they?

Of course! I mean, they did that when they got rid of physical recovery/installation disks for OEM systems, right?

Three Letters (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891579)

VLC

Re:Three Letters (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891893)

2 letters: No.

VLC is a shadow of a once good product.
Media Player Classic for a not-butchered, not awful interface experience.

VLC (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891595)

Are they going to ban VLC and other 3rd party players?
If not, I'm happy not to have to pay for those licences as a part of my Windows licence

Not really an issue... (2)

who_stole_my_kidneys (1956012) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891607)

Vendors will supply their own software to play them with the added crap that comes with windows. System Builders will use readily available codec , and tablets without DVD drives wont need it any way. XP did not come with a way to play DVD's unless you purchased software so this is not much of a change.

Re:Not really an issue... (3, Informative)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891931)

The one thing that was an issue, with XP's omission of DVD playback, was that so many of the 3rd party solutions shipped by OEMs were Absolutely. Fucking. Dire.

Dell, for one, had the unfortunate tendency to ship 'PowerDVD', which was abhorrently broken in virtually every way and(despite theoretically providing a supported DVD decoder for WMP) frequently managed to munge the system to the point where neither its own interface nor WMP's could handle DVD playback.

It would have been very polite of them to offer a separately licensed 'unobtrusive bundle of the directshow components you need to play DVDs', so that a little less shitware would have been shipped...

Meh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891613)

I mean it's expected (not welcomed but expected) behaviour from M$, but won't everyone just install vlc anyway?

Nothing to see here really...

Re:Meh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891675)

aye.

Woot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891619)

First!

What the heck, is this the 1980's again? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891627)

Looks like Cyberlink and Creative will be able to sell their DVD player software again finally!

Re:What the heck, is this the 1980's again? (5, Funny)

dexomn (147950) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891837)

Somewhere PowerDVD is wringing it's hands and cackling madly in it's secret lair.

Other players (2)

ailnlv (1291644) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891629)

Why not just download the VLC player? It's already much better than almost any alternative; I don't see why anyone would pay for Microsoft's crappy media center.

Re:Other players (0)

MrMista_B (891430) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891819)

And how will VLC even read the DVD, if the mechanical drive itself is inoperable until you pay Microsoft?

A bit premature to drop support (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891631)

Now I know that DVD is an as-good-as obsolete format (my computers do without optical drive for the better part of the last decade), but simply dropping DVD play-back support from your mainstream distribution that sounds a little premature to me!

It's a Feature!!!! (2, Insightful)

Picass0 (147474) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891637)

LMFAO!!!

If anyone said back in the mid 90's that Microsoft would ceed the cell phone market to Android and Apple, hemorage market share on the desktop and lose browser dominance they would be labeled a lunatic. Or Steve Ballmer.

CCCP (3, Insightful)

Deathnerd (1734374) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891641)

If I have to upgrade to Windows 8 (which I don't plan on doing), then I'll just wait until there's a suitable version of the Combined Community Codec Pack [cccp-project.net] for Win8. Really, paying for media playback is just lame.

Re:CCCP (3, Funny)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891809)

In Soviet Russia...

Incorrect article. (5, Interesting)

Haxagon (2454432) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891647)

The OS won't play DVDs in Media Center-- because it's not included. MS said that they were confident that the PC DVD-playing software market was sufficiently full.
Windows 8 will still play DVDs with third-party-software. There's no reason to have such an inflammatory article.

Re:Incorrect article. (2)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891701)

There's no reason to have such an inflammatory article.

You've given the "reason" right there.

Re:Incorrect article. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891743)

There's no reason to have such an inflammatory article.

That's where you're wrong. This is Slashdot, inflammatory articles are par for the course, and this one is inflammatory against Microsoft (or M$ to many numbered posters) so it's even "better."

This is a Non-Issue... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891657)

Windows 8 is the one we skip right?

And even if it wasn't, I pirate my copies anyway.

What? Nobody consulted the Marketing department? (1)

gavron (1300111) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891659)

"We wanted to include Media Player for everyone without everyone incurring the cost even if they don't even have an optical drive."

Yes, those people in Ethernopia upgrading to Windows 8 will certainly appreciate those "single-digit" dollar savings.
Meanwhile, the rest of the [non-apple non-linux must-use-for-my-office] lemmings will be screaming their heads off in frustration.

New Coke. All over again.

Microsoft... you shoot yourself in the foot more times than the rest of us want to. Thank you.

E
"So these two Dothraki and a Klingon walk into a bar..."

VLC FTW! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891661)

'nuff said

Price gouging? (1)

NuAngel (732572) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891677)

Unless they lower the price drastically from Windows 7 Professional, I'm starting to see a class action law suit forming. Removing features and charging the same or more isn't going to make a lot of people happy. Especially features people are considering 'basic' at this point, like DVD support (we forgave XP for not having it out of the box because DVD was still a relatively new and emerging thing 2001... but in 2012? c'mon...).

Who still uses WMP? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891683)

It has forever been the most resource intensive and least functional media player. I've been turning folks on to VLC for years. The most common comment: "It works for eveything! No searching for this codec or that one."

XBMC FTW (5, Informative)

dmacleod808 (729707) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891699)

On top of all the VLC comments above... if you want a *Free* media center alternative... XBMC is the way to go.

Re:XBMC FTW (2)

dmacleod808 (729707) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891757)

XBMC.org - Formerly known as XBOX MEDIA CENTER which was my favorite console of all time specifically because of this software package.

Re:XBMC FTW (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891847)

Plex FTW. The server/client model of Plex is a bit more elegant and easier to set up, and a Plex server can be used with an XMBC client through the plexbmc plugin. The Plex mobile apps are very useful as well.

Another nail in physical media's coffin? (1)

jtseng (4054) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891727)

All the movies I've watched on my PCs/iPhone/Amazon Fire have either been via Netflix or video files of ripped disks I already own. And when I did (occasionally) watch DVDs on my PCs I did it via VLC.

All of the content we've watched off of a DVD were played using our home theatre system; I can't imagine there's too much penetration of media PCs.

Actually, it's a great idea (1)

ink (4325) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891729)

I'm glad Microsoft is pushing the racket costs through to the consumer. The DVD licencing group is just a shakedown, and it's great to let users opt-out of their shenanigans. Linux distributions have been doing this for a long time with mp3 codecs (for example). Savvy users can get around it, but it's also very simple to pay a nominal fee to appease the intellectual property bandits.... if you want to support their practices.

bundling (5, Insightful)

bigdavex (155746) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891731)

If Microsoft bundles software, that's bad.
If Microsoft doesn't bundle software, that bad.

Is everything Microsoft does wrong by definition?

Re:bundling (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891833)

Yes.

Anything else I can help you with?

If you oversimplify then the answer is always going to be clear, even it it's wrong.

Re:bundling (1)

MikeMacK (788889) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891911)

I think that's the general consensus, yes.

Re:bundling (1)

reasterling (1942300) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891919)

yes.

Re:bundling (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891959)

Considering Windows is the most used Desktop OS in the world, it comes with the territory.

Ideally, they should know their userbase. So they drop direct DVD support, but don't implement any ability to rip DVD's to ISO for ISO video playback, but will charge for direct DVD playback? This screams licensing agreement failure with certain industry individuals who hold the reigns on DVD format. Either that, or they're really trying to push the market towards network streaming services, which seems contradictory, as almost all of that is through 3rd party vendors.

Did the Windows 8 steering committee drink the koolaid again?

Re:bundling (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39892005)

This is Slashdot -- you even have to ask?

thank you MS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891741)

Media Center is a POS anyways, so I'm glad it won't be bundled. VLC is all you need. Good luck selling this bundle to grannies.

Just download VLC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891745)

Or do they mean the underlying functionality won't be there so not even a third-party app like VLC will be able to play DVDs?

DVD / BR patent holders are the big loosers (1)

ghn (2469034) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891749)

Their days of getting royalties on every single copy of windows sold are counted.. Remember that HD-DVD vs Blue Ray war? MS was behind HD-DVD, and sony won with its blue ray.. I wonder if MS would have done the same thing if HD-DVD was not abandoned? I think they are simply pointing the middle finger to sony in that move..

Could this be good for, eg, VLC & other OSS? (2, Funny)

ivi (126837) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891759)

Perhaps this will boost interest in desktop Linux?

But can VLC do what M$ wants $$ to enable? IF so, M$ might as well give DVD playing away free.

Marginal cost? (1)

Ed Avis (5917) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891763)

Does the guy understand what marginal cost means? The cost to Microsoft of including a few extra megabytes on the install media (or on the disk of a machine sold with Windows) is zero. It only costs them extra to include the media stuff because of their own marketing contortions where they decided to package and sell it separately. If they just included it by default, the marginal cost would be nothing. There are upfront costs (also known as sunk costs) involved in writing the software in the first place, but marginal cost is the cost of producing one extra copy. In software, as in movies or music, that cost is either zero or something very close to zero.

Re:Marginal cost? (1)

MSTCrow5429 (642744) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891961)

Two possibilities: First, Microsoft does not hire the smartest or most knowledgeable, possibly a symptom of a Ballmer decline; or Two, Microsoft is intentionally making incredibly stupid misstatements to detract attention from this bizarre policy change.

Who's paying for Windows anyway? (3, Interesting)

InvisibleClergy (1430277) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891767)

I know that in general, Windows comes subsidized on computers, and you can bet your ass that manufacturers aren't going to put non-media-enabled versions on there. If the DVD drive doesn't work right, the people who sold the computer are going to get the flak, not the guys who made the mysterious "Operating-System".

The people who will pay for this are the companies who do volume licensing, as usual.

Forgot to mention. (1)

InvisibleClergy (1430277) | more than 2 years ago | (#39892015)

Granted - this is still a bullshit change. But in implementation it won't end up significantly diffierent from how things currently are.

Licensing costs (1)

Ralish (775196) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891775)

This does actually make some level of sense, the reason being, Microsoft has to pay to license the required codecs for playback of DVDs, Blu-rays, HD-DVDs, etc... when they bundle them with Windows (think H264, for example). This does result in a price increase to the cost of every Windows license. Media playback is one of the very few areas of the Windows operating system where Microsoft has to pay a per-license additional cost for the inclusion of this extra code (I can't think of any others, but I'm sure other Slashdotters may have insight here).

So, why should everyone have to pay the extra fee for these codecs if they have no interest in using them? I can't even remember the last time I watched a physical Blu-ray or DVD on a computer, and when I do watch media, I do it through VLC Media Player. And, after all, this isn't a DRM restriction, go and install VLC Media Player, or ffdshow, or whatever you please, and you can get many/all these codecs via 3rd-party for free. So, honestly, who gives a damn?

Re:Licensing costs (1)

jfengel (409917) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891887)

Does VLC pay those licensing costs? Is there some sort of "free software" exemption?

Marginal cost? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891793)

The marginal cost of electronic distribution is a few cents. If that's really what they're charging, why bother?

VLC?! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891807)

Anyone suggesting VLC needs to be slapped upside the head.

Just use CCCP and MPC-HC like a NORMAL person.

Good. Keep reducing the flow of money to MPEGLA (5, Insightful)

westyvw (653833) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891817)

I really dislike Microsoft, I have no need for windows anything, but I dislike MPEGLA even more. As far as I am concerned, its good news that they will no longer be recieving license fees automatically from Microsoft.

Oh Nos (1)

s0nicfreak (615390) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891823)

They removed something I haven't used in 10 years!

No love (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891877)

Dear Microsoft:

No love

No respect

Go away now

I'm not sure it's great marketing (2)

LihTox (754597) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891885)

I get what they're doing and it makes sense, but you're going to end up with a lot of angry consumers who don't understand why their DVD drive doesn't work; or maybe they don't have one built into their computer but plug one in, and a dialog box says "Please deposit $5".

If anything, they should make the DVD version the standard, and let savvy folks downgrade and save the cost if they want.

VLC is free and better. So shut the fuck up. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891891)

This is a non-issue.

I can foresee that My Slashdot days are coming to an end as this site
sinks inexorably into utter irrelevance. Yeah, I have a user ID, but I don't
give a fuck about that any more. This place sucks since Taco left.

"Marginal Cost" (1, Insightful)

Guppy (12314) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891927)

In a comment, Microsoft's Steven Sinofsky elaborates: "(marginal is small, honest, and we just haven't determined the final prices yet based on ongoing work but we are aiming for single digit dollars but we don't control the truly marginal costs).

I'm sure these costs will be right in line with the marginal amounts they charge consumers for Windows Recovery media.

Typo correction (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39891947)

I've never heard of DBV-T/S I presume you mean DVB-T/S

Next step (1)

bulldog060 (992160) | more than 2 years ago | (#39891969)

Charge to enable use of the ctrl, alt, and delete keys

Bad move by microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39892007)

Microsoft is shooting itself in the foot. Like when they tried to sell IE separately from Windows, this is doomed to fail. They will go through all the trouble and expense to package a media center software bundle and no one is going to buy it. There are too many other options out there for them to do this. In order to maintain their dominant position in the OS market they need to include products into the base OS that people are moving towards and then capitalize on those trends.

What they are doing here is following the trends of the major airlines. Those airlines which charge for every little thing as a separate convenience fee. Those same airlines which are going bankrupt every few years.

If Microsoft had some good leadership, it should exploit the touch interface trend, the social media trend, and the cloud trends without touching current features. If they want to stem the Apple tide, they should be pushing features that Apple has been reluctant to include on their OSs that the majority of people have been asking for.

come on, microsoft... it's two fucking dollars (1)

sdnoob (917382) | more than 2 years ago | (#39892017)

it's not like your bottom line is suffering.. you're only making (net) $2 BILLION A MONTH *

* FY2011

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