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Are New DRM Technologies Setting Vista Up For Failure?

samzenpus posted more than 7 years ago | from the stand-you-up-to-knock-you-down dept.

DRM 407

PetManimal writes "Computerworld has picked apart the way Vista handles DRM in terms of hardware and software restrictions. Trusted Platform Module, Output Protection Management, Protected Video Path and various Windows Media software components are designed to 'protect' copyrighted content against security breaches and unauthorized use. The article notes that many of the DRM technologies were forced upon Vista by the entertainment industry, but that may not garner Microsoft or Hollywood any sympathy with consumers: 'Matt Rosoff, lead analyst at research firm Directions On Microsoft, asserts that this process does not bode well for new content formats such as Blu-ray and HD-DVD, neither of which are likely to survive their association with DRM technology. "I could not be more skeptical about the viability of the DRM included with Vista, from either a technical or a business standpoint," Rosoff stated. "It's so consumer-unfriendly that I think it's bound to fail — and when it fails, it will sink whatever new formats content owners are trying to impose."'"

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407 comments

Yes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863400)

damn lameness filter made me expand my comment. Subject line says it all.

Re:Yes. (1)

Zonk (troll) (1026140) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863502)

How lame.

no no no (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863414)

Content owners aren't trying to impose new formats, content providers are. Unless, of course, people are fooled into buying licenses to view content, rather than the content itself.

Re:no no no (4, Insightful)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863574)

No, Vista is going to bring to a head the whole conflict between:
a) sheepish, complacent unwillingness to explore alternatives, and
b) childish demand for instant gratification.
My bet is on b), due to the entropy of the human soul. Once the hatred of the lock-in reaches bloom, the amount of cygwin, dual boot, live CD, and flat out migration will pick up steam.
It takes time to realize that there is a world beyond Redmond.

Re:no no no (4, Insightful)

shadowmas (697397) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864118)

and don't forget that with all these portable mp3/media players, you tube, etc people are starting to take for granted the ability to rip/share media files and do whatever they wish with them. if they come across a windows version which doesn't allow them to do that they WILL consider it to be a bug not a feature.

a few years ago Microsoft and media companies would probably have gotten away putting any damn DRM restriction they want without trouble but i think it's a tad bit too late to do that now. the cat's out of the bag...

Fooled me how many times now? (1)

Mateo_LeFou (859634) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863658)

"Consumers are the final arbiters because they can vote with their wallets," Usher added. "This is as it should be in any well-functioning market, and we believe the improvements in Windows Vista play to this strength."

Wait a minute.. (5, Funny)

T-Bucket (823202) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863418)

You mean, consumers might somehow be offended by being bent over by major corporation after major corporation??? When did this happen???

Re:Wait a minute.. (2, Interesting)

cloricus (691063) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863516)

I'm a bit worried to be honest. Windows people seem to be ready for this rogering from Microsoft and they all have the out look of "oh but the DRM will be cracked within a month and we'll be free to continue doing what we do"...The real question is will it really be cracked (activation never was, well) and secondly do we want it cracked. It looks like a rather good model to me and most of the people who deal with advanced systems like that wouldn't touch Windows anyway - and we can be sure it is out of the realm of script kiddies. I don't see Windows users going back to XP once they've switched to Vista; they've been chopping at the bit to drop the dead weight that is XP (in their eyes) because of the pressure applied by the Linux and Mac camps who even with the Vista release are still infront. So there are two outcomes...Windows users find DRM to much and side grade to Linux or Mac or more likely they will bend over and continue to take it like they did with activation.

Re:Wait a minute.. (1)

vought (160908) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863634)

Windows people seem to be ready for this rogering from Microsoft and they all have the out look of "oh but the DRM will be cracked within a month and we'll be free to continue doing what we do"...

In my experience they're all screaming from the rooftops about how Zune is almost nearly as good as the iPod was two years ago, and that makes it better because Apple sucks.

an even better question would be: "With Microsoft bleeding billion into the Xbox, a billion into the Zune, and with Vista set up for failure, will MCSEs and IT managers finally start looking at other operating systems with anything but disdain?"

Re:Wait a minute.. (4, Interesting)

cloricus (691063) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863746)

Windows users are continuing to test the waters of Linux and to be honest I think this is the best way to convert them...Show new users that over a period of time Linux is a manageable learning curve and has some clear advantages. Every one I know that uses Linux full time after being a long time Windows user did it this way including myself and it takes about one to three years. This process is being helped a long now that Linux isn't playing second fiddle to Windows and is now focusing on catching up to OSX and finding its own identity instead of just being a straight (boring and useless) Windows clone. And with compiz/xorg working on everyday hardware without issue and Vista's upgrade costs at least force a bunch of new to Linux Windows users start testing the waters. If this is kept up the rate of users defecting to Linux and Mac will hopefully turn into a land slide in the next five to ten years and then we will truly see the year of the Linux Desktop.

Note I do hope users go to both Linux and Mac in roughly equal groups as I'd like to see us avoid another monopoly situation like this Microsoft hell we've had to live through.

Re:Wait a minute.. (3, Insightful)

quizzicus (891184) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863876)

Note I do hope users go to both Linux and Mac in roughly equal groups as I'd like to see us avoid another monopoly situation like this Microsoft hell we've had to live through.

Except Linux could never have a monopoly, because it can be forked by a dissatisfied user at the slightest provocation.

Re:Wait a minute.. (1)

Bios_Hakr (68586) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863642)

I think it will be cracked. Various mafia-like entities make too much money from selling street-corner software. There is a lot of money to be had for the people that crack Vista.

Bootleggers will love this (2, Interesting)

Heir Of The Mess (939658) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864160)

I was talking to some bootleggers on the footpath a few months ago while on holiday. They were very excited about HD-DVD and Blue-Ray. They hope that everyone gets burned at least once trying to play the new media as once people get burned with the legal stuff they tend to be less uppity about buying from the bootleggers.

Re:Wait a minute.. (2, Funny)

Nanpa (971527) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863694)

Activation was never cracked well?

Perhaps you'd like to meet my friend, Mr 'Corporate Key'

Re:Wait a minute.. (1)

RobertLTux (260313) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863760)

and there are cracks for Vista running around NOW

Re:Wait a minute.. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863768)

Do you really think the Mac isn't going to embed DRM? If they want to be friendly with the media companies (which they have to be if they don't want their iTunes content to dry up), they will have to implement equivalent protections that MS does.

Further I would really like to see people stop acting like DRM is a new thing. It isn't. It's been around almost as long as digital computers have been available to the masses. Am I the only one who remembers the games that had a red filter and code card that you needed to use to start the game? Does no one remember floppy disks that had bad sectors that the program checked for so you couldn't copy them without hacking around the protection? The only difference now is it is getting harder to get around the protections but it's also getting a lot more transparent.

Personally, I would love to not have to deal with DRM. And if there is an alternative I won't. That is why I don't buy anything from iTMS (or any of their competitors). It's also why I probably won't upgrade to the new high-definition formats.

As for Vista, the only thing that MS is "responsible" for (IMO) is activation and WGA. Everything else is a framework they are providing for the media companies and which you don't have to use. As for the MS stuff, I have a really hard time complaining about activiation. Almost all pro-level commercial apps have some form of it. It would be really hard for me to hold MS in contempt for it and then go out and buy Photoshop. WGA on the other hand is stupid. If they've validated you with the activation that should be the end of it IMO. Although I wouldn't be too surprised to see other companies following suit. And to be honest I've seen worse. (Such as a certain application that when patched would remove the itself without warning if it thought you had pirated it.)

Re:Wait a minute.. (1)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864010)

(which they have to be if they don't want their iTunes content to dry up)
That's the most ridiculous thing I've ever read. There will always be people wanting to sell their music through Itunes. The content well will never dry up.

Re:Wait a minute.. (2, Insightful)

westlake (615356) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864074)

Windows users find DRM to much and side grade to Linux or Mac or more likely they will bend over and continue to take it like they did with activation.

Geek: Activation! Wah!

Everyone else: Click. Click. Done.

Geek: DRM! Wah!

Everyone else: Insert HD-DVD Movie. Play HD-DVD Movie. Done.

When HD-DVD and Blu-Ray drives become available for the Mac or OEM Linux, (think Linspire systems sold through Walmart or Target) they will enforce the same DRM rules as Windows, the XBox or the PS3. There is no side-grade.

Re:Wait a minute.. (1)

cheater512 (783349) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864144)

<blockquote>When HD-DVD and Blu-Ray drives become available for the Mac or OEM Linux, (think Linspire systems sold through Walmart or Target) they will enforce the same DRM rules as Windows, the XBox or the PS3. There is no side-grade.</blockquote>
Tell that to region codes.

Linux never had problems with regions.
It was only until relatively recently that most dvd players ditched the regions.

Re:Wait a minute.. (1)

kevinadi (191992) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864112)

I don't think MS is that dumb to let media companies rule their decision making in Vista. After all, it's their future that's at stake.

Also, in the real world the problem is not as simple as "windows vs linux vs mac". Zealotry toward an OS only exists in slashdot. What if your employer wants you to hand over reports in Word? You have three options: write it up in Wine, or in windows itself on a computer assigned to you in the office, or quit. No sane person would choose #3 (except RMS, maybe). That leaves #1 as the only option. It's fine as long as you have all the time in the world, but once you've worked 9 to 5, have a family and children, you REALLY DON'T CARE. MS can take over the world for all I care, I just want to get this goddamn report done and go home. To hell with the DRMed-to-death Vista. Give me anything with Office in it and I'm happy.

This line of thought might sound weird and impossible when you're still in college. But trust me, once you've worked in a proper corporate office for about 10 or so years, you'll understand perfectly why Linux and Macs won't EVER win over MS.

Re:Wait a minute.. (1)

cheater512 (783349) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864120)

Activation was cracked pretty well. I....A friend recently did it for a virtual machine. :)

Re:Wait a minute.. (1)

whitehatnetizen (997645) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864140)

check this one out: http://www.smh.com.au/news/biztech/vista-gold-but- cracked-already/2006/11/14/1163266532925.html [smh.com.au] "Various pirate websites have a version of Vista available to download, called "Vista BillGates". It comes supplied with a product key, allowing users to install the operating system on their computers unhindered. A second patch - a separate download, called an "activation crack" - must also be applied. This bypasses the activation process used by Vista to ensure that each installation is legitimate."

Re:Wait a minute.. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863622)

You know what they say:

Nobody ever went broke underestimating the American public.

Re:Wait a minute.. (2, Informative)

wasted (94866) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863730)

I thought it was" "Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public", or something to that effect.

Alright! (1)

pegr (46683) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863438)

"It's so consumer-unfriendly that I think it's bound to fail -- and when it fails, it will sink whatever new formats content owners are trying to impose."
 
Hurray! Finally, Joe Sixpack finally gets DRM! The sooner the better, I say!

Short answers to Slashdot Questions (2, Funny)

vought (160908) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863598)

Are New DRM Technologies Setting Vista Up for Failure?

Yes.

This has been another episode of Short Answers to Slashdot Questions.

Re:Alright! (4, Insightful)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863652)

>Finally, Joe Sixpack finally gets DRM! The sooner the better, I say!

Joe and Jane Sixpack have been getting DRM since the opening of the iTunes store and they love it. The idea that the common person will stand up against copyright controls is a little naive. Heck, some of them are looking forward to rebuying their movies and music in the new formats.

As if it needs DRM to fail (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863442)

As if Vista won't fail on its own merits. Doesn't need new DRM to do that.

Re:As if it needs DRM to fail (1)

TheVelvetFlamebait (986083) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863968)

As if Vista won't fail on its own merits. Doesn't need new DRM to do that.
Umm, no. It'll be hard enough for Vista to fail with DRM. After all, Windows is the standard, and there is plenty to like about the new OS. It'll be more secure (I know, I know, I'm not saying much), it'll be prettier (it's important), and it has "features" that are only available in Vista (such as sandboxed IE7, DirectX 10, etc). It'd be a fine OS, if it weren't so damn crippled. The reason why many of us here on /. want Vista to fail, is because we don't want this DRM to become standard.

yes no maybe fud notfud ponies (4, Funny)

Quantam (870027) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863450)

That's about all I have to say on the matter.

Re:yes no maybe fud notfud ponies ...and! (4, Funny)

dwandy (907337) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863630)

itsatrap!

Re:yes no maybe fud notfud ponies (1)

PsychicX (866028) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863952)

I also think it's worth pointing out that the Slashdot headline (though not the actual text of the post) deviates somewhat from the article. TFA is not talking about Vista failing -- which is what's implied by the post title -- but rather the failure of the DRM technologies in Vista, and thus the failure of next-gen formats.

Game Over (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863452)

If a system is tampered with -- for example, if the hard drive is removed and placed in a different machine -- TPM detects the tampering and prevents the drive from being unencrypted.

Half-way through first page and Vista's a non-starter for me. And I resent the word "tampering".

Why would anyone have a problem with hardware DRM? (5, Insightful)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863476)

A TPM microchip embedded on the PC's motherboard stores unique system identifiers along with the BitLocker decryption keys. If a system is tampered with -- for example, if the hard drive is removed and placed in a different machine -- TPM detects the tampering and prevents the drive from being unencrypted.
Great idea! This way if my Motherboard dies, my data essentially dies with it. I'm always looking for ways to increase the impact fanout of my systems failure modes :-)

Re:Why would anyone have a problem with hardware D (0)

zptao (979069) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863628)

Vista can be reinstalled on a machine with changed components, such as a motherboard. It was on slashdot a bit ago. Less of the windows trolling, plz.

Re:Why would anyone have a problem with hardware D (0, Troll)

vought (160908) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863666)

Vista can be reinstalled on a machine with changed components, such as a motherboard. It was on slashdot a bit ago. Less of the windows trolling, plz.


It's not a troll.

How convenient. To get the data back off of my encrypted drive after the motherboard dies, I'll have to reinstall Vista, install all the OS updates, update the keys in the TPM, then read the disk.

Glad Microsoft is working so hard to make things simple.

Hint: TPM doesn't have to be implemented in such a boneheaded manner. Microsoft _chose_ to do it this way.

Re:Why would anyone have a problem with hardware D (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863702)

Its an ENCRYPTED drive that YOU can choose to use, It is supposed to be bloody hard to get the data off without the install, that is the whole intention of it. It is not forced on you, it is not something that is even obvious or easy to do, Bitlocker requires good knowledge of what your doing to implement. So FFS stop trolling garbage.

Re:Why would anyone have a problem with hardware D (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863792)

It is supposed to be bloody hard to get the data off without the install, that is the whole intention of it.

Wrong. It's supposed to be bloody hard to get the data off without my consent, not Microsoft's. I realize some of you have been so brainwashed to think those two things are the same, but they often aren't.

Re:Why would anyone have a problem with hardware D (0)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863812)

Its an ENCRYPTED drive that YOU can choose to use ...
Oh ... I whole-heartedly agree! And most people will "choose" to use it the way they "choose" Windows over Linux, i.e. because they don't know there is any other option than Windows. Here's your sign ....

Re:Why would anyone have a problem with hardware D (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863894)

And here's you fucking sign fucktard, go fucking kill yourself.

Re:Why would anyone have a problem with hardware D (2, Informative)

Atlantis-Rising (857278) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863916)

Actually, setting up BitLocker is not simple, and it's definately not turned on by default. Whole-drive encryption is too failure-prone, slow, and difficult for it to be any other way. BTW, it doesn't require a TPM- you can do it with a USB key.

Re:Why would anyone have a problem with hardware D (1)

OnlineAlias (828288) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863976)

Bitlocker is only available for enterprise customers. The keys are also stored in active directory in a slick little schema extension, where they are easily retrievable. This is excellent development of encryption technology for enterprise customers that don't want to have to worry about getting in the headlines over a stolen laptop. It has nothing to do with DRM, and is not even available to regular consumers. I'm no MS fanboi, but jeesus, get a clue.

Re:Why would anyone have a problem with hardware D (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863686)

1. Install new motherboard.
2. Re-install Windows
3. Save data
4. Install linux
5. ...
6. Profit

Re: you are confused (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863864)

The DRM encryption key is stored in the TPM chip of the motherboard. If your motherboard dies, sure maybe you can install Vista on a new one, but that new motherboard (even if the same make and model) has a different key in its TPM chip, and can't decrypt your data. The key to all your stuff died with the motherboard.

Enjoy.

Protect against lost keys, drive failure, malware (1)

Beryllium Sphere(tm) (193358) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863690)

There's a school of thought which holds that unless you have at least two backups of your data, one of them off site, then you don't really have the data.

Re:Why would anyone have a problem with hardware D (4, Funny)

myowntrueself (607117) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863720)

Hey at least it'll save on the cost of backup media;

You back your DRM movies to tape, your motherboard fails and the hard drives are now unreadable. You reinstall on a new motherboard and restore the data from tape. Only the DRM content 'knows' that its been 'copied' to 'a different machine' and won't play.

So you give up on backups altogether and save a small fortune!

See, Microsoft *does* have your best interests at heart!

That will never be the explanation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863482)

Vista will probably not catch on quickly, and DRM will be part of the reason. But the consumers who don't buy it will say "it's too hard", rather than articulating some kind of principled objection to DRM. The DRM will be part of what makes it annoying, which will simply slow people's switchover from XP/etc.

Re:That will never be the explanation (2, Interesting)

pilkul (667659) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863744)

Oh, I think consumers are perfectly capable of telling apart intentionally crippled software from accidental problems. There are telltale signs when a device goes out of its way to stop working.

Directions on Microsoft ??? (4, Interesting)

Lord Grey (463613) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863492)

... Rosoff, lead analyst at research firm Directions On Microsoft, asserts ...

I originally had no intention of looking at this article. Then I saw the above snippet in the post and felt compelled to find out what a "Directions on Microsoft" is. They have an About Us [directions...rosoft.com] page, it turns out. Their first entry is:

Directions on Microsoft is the only INDEPENDENT organization in the world devoted exclusively to tracking Microsoft. We've studied Microsoft since 1992. Nobody knows the company better.

Our team of Microsoft experts provides clear, concise, and actionable analysis of shifts in Microsoft strategy, Microsoft product and technology roadmaps, delivery schedules, organizational changes, marketing initiatives, and licensing and other policies so you can quickly assess how they impact your business.

Thousands of companies worldwide--including corporate purchasers of Microsoft products, system integrators, software vendors, hardware manufacturers, network operators, venture capitalists, and financial analysts--trust Directions on Microsoft for accurate and unbiased Microsoft research and analysis to guide their strategic decisions.

I knew that Microsoft supported, in one way or another, a lot of organizations around the world but this takes the cake. A professional, corporate stalker? The world must be coming to an end sooner than I thought.

Re:Directions on Microsoft ??? (1)

jt2377 (933506) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863920)

why not? MS is still the biggest commerical software company there is. whatever they plan to release will have an ripple effect on other software vendors. why do you think Symantec and McAfee are crying and moaning about Vista's security center and MS's AV software.

yet another article that says "get off my butt" (3, Interesting)

Kpau (621891) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863498)

Yet another article that reminds me to get off my butt and convert everything in my house to Ubuntu except for the game machines. We each have two computers (one work, one game) and a few servers. They're all homebuilt. The game machines I'll grudgingly leave as XPsp2 boxes ... but it leaves the annoying thought that they'll force an upgrade to Vista down the road because the new games will require DirectX 10. At that point I may take up knitting.

Re:yet another article that says "get off my butt" (4, Interesting)

cloricus (691063) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863594)

You never know... By the time the game industry is dx10 mainstream WINE may support it well. WINEs implimentation of dx7/8 is going well and dx9 is getting better all the time. A recent post in the WINEhq newsletter also suggested that adding support for dx10 once 7/8/9 were working nicely would be a doable affair. So in the end you may be able to play more of your Windows games than you can under Windows ;) ...Just like the current state of programs (yes you can run more Windows programs under Linux than under Windows if you include win 3.11 to xp sp2!).

Re:yet another article that says "get off my butt" (1)

TheNetAvenger (624455) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864102)

dx10 mainstream WINE may support it well

I hope you are right; however, I have a bit of concern for this happening. DirectX 10 not only opens up the paradox of the pixel/vertex shader pipelines, but is also draws on a new device driver model that pushes GPUs to multi-task and share GPU RAM seamlessly with the System RAM.

If DirectX 10 wasn't tied to the WDDM, there would be a better shot, however for now I think the best we can expect for quite some time is DirectX9. However, give open source a few years to catch up to the multi-tasking GPU driver models, and then it might be possible.

Re:yet another article that says "get off my butt" (2, Insightful)

AVonGauss (1001486) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864152)

If you can write a game to run under Windows w/ DirectX 10 - you can provide a compatibility layer for it through Wine - the only question will be the performance.

Re:yet another article that says "get off my butt" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863662)

You joke, but games are already "good enough" in the graphics department, and the important stuff (scripting, ai, and level/encounter/quest design) right now need a massive amount of work. Unless dx10 comes with magical AI with 'do what I mean mode' and prevents level designers from writing buggy checkpoints, waypoints, interaction scripts, and objectives then I can't see that it will have anything to offer the world. I have a top of the line gaming pc and I still turn off a fair amount of dx9 fluff to get a playable game.

Re:yet another article that says "get off my butt" (1)

Kpau (621891) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863986)

I completely agree with that ... graphics are not the weak point in gaming anymore. But I can visualize situations where some "must have" game-app will be designed with DirectX 10 (because Microsoft gave them buckets of money). Last time I paid attention DX10 was not going to be offered on XP, only on Vista. ah well, if NWN 2 pans out (module infinity) and I still have paper rpgs then we may witness a collective interwoven corporate mass suicide when (southpark ref) everyone goes outside to play :)

Re:yet another article that says "get off my butt" (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863940)

At that point I may take up knitting.

That's what I'm doing tonight. I highly recommend it. A bit of weaving wouldn't hurt either.

KFG

Re:yet another article that says "get off my butt" (1)

I'm Don Giovanni (598558) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864062)

Ubuntu can't play protected HD-DVDs and Blu-Ray discs at all, so what are you talking about?
If you don't like DRM, just don't play DRM content. Vista will play non-DRM'ed content just as well as Ubuntu. But Vista will play DRM'ed content as well, unlike Ubuntu. Seems like Vista has the edge here.

Re:yet another article that says "get off my butt" (2, Insightful)

xebecv (1027918) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864168)

Same thing was about DVD and their CSS protection. Do you recall what have happened to them in Linux?

Re:yet another article that says "get off my butt" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16864134)

knitting already in KDE

I'd say make the switch [kde.org] already

P.S.
Don't knock it till you've tried it

should I be buying xp then? (1)

bombastinator (812664) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863530)

Exactly how annoying is this stuff? I've been looking at buying a new laptop, but I thought I should hold out for vista. Should I be buying th xp machine instead?

Re:should I be buying xp then? (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863608)

Yes. In fact, it might be worth paying for the $500 entry into the corporate version, just so they can't cut you off of their activation scheme, forcing you to upgrade, if you ever need to reformat your drive. It's pretty much that bad.

Re:should I be buying xp then? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16864000)

Ever hear of AntiWPA? I use it for doing testing in VMWare with one of the SLP [wikipedia.org] keys and no problems at all. No problems with WGA, either. All validation checks go through.

Re:should I be buying xp then? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863650)

haven't you heard of linux? On a more serious note, I have tried Vista RC2 and, trust me, average user won't notice any changes other than it being more eye candy and resource hogger. Why do you want your OS to use up all your resources when you can use them for more useful computing? Or if your computer is staying idle, let it slip into lower clock rate to save energy.

Will consumers care? (3, Insightful)

weinerofthemonth (1027672) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863542)

As long as the DRM is not intrusive, will consumers really care? Most people don't care if Microsoft checks to make sure their music file or movie is legal before it plays as long as they don't see it. As soon as the DRM causes false positives, erodes performance or become otherwise intrusive, people will go nuts. If done right, DRM could be here to stay. The problem is, none of the players have a clue how to do it right.

Re:Will consumers care? (1, Troll)

Kope (11702) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863576)

I specifically use my computer to mix my own music. I have several thousands dollars invested in high end sound cards, mixers, etc.

My concern is a very simple one -- if I wish to mix my own music on Vista, will it be DRM free, or will simply using that OS taint my final release? The last thing I need is one of my two listeners not being able to play my cd or mp3s.

Re:Will consumers care? (2, Interesting)

teamhasnoi (554944) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864116)

IWBRV (I won't be running Vista), but just like the DRM on iTunes, YOU don't get the 'benefits' of DRM (restricting access), you just get the shaft if you buy something with DRM 'attached', as the deal you agreed to via EULA (I know, that's hilarious! Agree to something after I've bought it! HA!)


In any case, if you're serious about music on computers, you get your dedicated system set up (mine is XP sp2 with an Aardvark q10 (outta biz a few years ago) and Vegas - remove everything that isn't audio related, and call that an appliance. Don't change it, minus a few plugins (they don't usually mess it all up :)

If you want to mess with Vista, save up 400 bucks and buy some off the shelf deal with it preinstalled. I saw it in the flesh for the first time today, and thought, 'Wow. I've had all that since Tiger came out.' ha.

XP works great for music, as long as you don't do anything else. OS X is for everything else.

And music. :)

Not possible to "do it right" (1)

openright (968536) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864044)


Lets look at the goals of the key players here:

A - Move/Music industry: make as much profit with the least effort
B - Musician/Artist: make good music, make good profit, be independent
C - Average User: play media on common consumer devices
D - Power User: play media on common and uncommon devices. Skip commercials. Play as desired.
E - Poor College copiers: copy cool music, as I can't really afford to buy it.
F - Criminal: undo or avoid protection and sell copies to others to make profit with little effort.

Now look at the effect of DRM on these players:

A - Seemingly positive because of control. But diminishing popularity due to removal of "college copying mentality" as free product placement.
B - Negative. No extra profit. Loss of control as middleman is always required.
C - Somewhat negative. Missing flexibility causes re-purchase, annoyance and diminishing sales.
D - Negative. DRM means no freedom of use.
E - Negative. Result to DRM-free of commons music.
F - Somewhat Negative. Though large-scale criminals can obtain commercial duplicators that can copy without unDRMing. Though displaced "college copiers" may create bigger demand for gray-market copies.

hmmm.... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863546)

I can pay an arm and a leg to be treated like a criminal or...
I can pay less and have freedom...

Tough decision...

Re:hmmm.... (3, Insightful)

grcumb (781340) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864122)

I can pay an arm and a leg to be treated like a criminal or... I can pay less and have freedom... Tough decision...

Tragically, yes, it is. For some reason people find it easier to remain complacent about their environment right up until the very moment when backing away from their mistakes becomes impossible. Human history is really just a litany of such failures. Santayana was just gilding the lily when he stated that those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it. The ironic and painful truth is that the first lesson of history is that nobody ever learns from history.

People will continue to acquiesce to this charade of 'Rights Management' right up until the point when it becomes too painful to bear, but there's no way to go back to how things were before. I only hope that mavericks like us won't be caught up in their quagmire.

We can hope... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863548)

...but I for one won't be holding my breath.

Don't think it will take out new media though (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863568)

I don't think failure of DRM on the PC (which I agree is likley) will take out the new media.

For one thing, the ICT flag (which controls the ability to display high-resolution video on and unprotected display) is off in media and will be off for some time, so users will not notice that particular bit of DRM,

Anotehr aspect is that most video players will probably be dedicated HD media players, like the PS3 (at first) and later on standalone players. So people will not notice the restrctions around the media as much on those platforms.

Lastly, computer owners are really going to embrace a recordable disc that holds an order of magnitude more data than a hard disk, and relish the ability to burn home HD movies.

So I think DRM will experience some pains in the PC (and even the Mac, depending on how much they fall in line) world, but it still will not sink the formats.

Re:Don't think it will take out new media though (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16863790)

DRM is not about music and video.

This cannot be said enough. DRM is about ensuring that your computer is running software of which company X approves... and the hardware (in the form of Trusted Computing) will verify that for them. Once you think through the implications of that, then you'll understand why DRM is a much wider subject than simply CAN I COPY MY DVDs.

DRM in the form imagined by Microsoft/Intel/Sun/IBM/AMD (and the rest of the Trusted Computing mafia) is thoroughly Orwellian in nature. It involves the centralised control of software, the ability to execute code in secret, and the ability to FORCE you to run particular pieces of code. Control of music and video is just a small, but fortunate, byproduct of this -- one that Microsoft is more than happy to sell to the content industry.

Short answer: No (4, Informative)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863578)

Longer answer: No, because Vista doesn't mandate the DRM. You can use all your un-DRM'd media just fine in Vista. You can make new un-DRM'd media in Vista. You can even make it in new formats. Vista doesn't care. So while a DRM'd up format might fail, it won't hurt Vista at all because Vista doesn't mandate you use DRM, just provides it for you to use. Also, it's not like the DRM'd content will magically work un-DRM'd on older OSes. You'll have to have all the DRM support to use it.

So either way it works for Vista. If the DRM fails, oh well, some wasted development money I guess but the OS works as it always has. If it succeds, just another reason for people to upgrade to Vista.

Re:Short answer: No (1)

MeNeXT (200840) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863866)

I don't think you get it. The people who loaded their system with their friends XP who copy movies they rent will be affected. That's how I read it. Now that will affect most people I know who run XP.

It's just funny that way....

Re:Short answer: No (4, Interesting)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863882)

I don't think so. The norm currently is that if you ask me for a copy of the new albulm I just bought I might umm and ahh over it for 10 minutes, but ultimately I have the choice of giving you a copy. I might feel guilty about it, because all that propaganda I've seen on tv tells me it is wrong, but I actually have the option of doing the "wrong" thing. But if you ask me for a copy and I say "can't, its copy protected" you might reply with "can't we crack it?" and then we'll go search the net for 20 minutes, not find anything, call our geeky friend and ask him and he might say "as yet, there is no crack for Microsoft's DRM" and by that point you and I will be looking at my computer like most geeks look at this stuff: proprietary software stops me from doing what I want. And that's it man, the geeks have won then, and Microsoft just don't get that.

Why Vista and not OSX (2, Interesting)

CrackedButter (646746) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863610)

Why didn't the entertainment empires force this DRM crap on OSX in the same way, they should be small fry compared to Microsoft.

Re:Why Vista and not OSX (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863680)

Cause Apple is already doing it themselves?

Re:Why Vista and not OSX (2, Insightful)

henry7 (902937) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863716)

I think you've just answered your own question. Why bother with small fry?

Re:Why Vista and not OSX (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864028)

Microsoft was "forced" into it like Br'er Rabbit was "forced" into the briar patch.

Controling the DRM and getting a cut of every media sale in the universe has been their long term strategy, for a long time.

KFG

Apple is a member of BDA (3, Informative)

I'm Don Giovanni (598558) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864086)

Apple is a member of BDA, the Blu-Ray Disc Association (I'm not exactly sure what the acronym stands for), so Leopard will definitely have DRM. It *has* to in order to play protected Blu-Ray discs.

cloaked (1)

pdwestermann (687379) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863624)

as long as the consumer doesn't even know they are dealing with DRM, it wouldn't matter. your average person has no clue about digital rights management. its kind of silly to split hairs over DRM details when the target market doesnt even realize they will exist. Once it stops your average joe from doing something basic, then its starting to make a negative impact.

my vote counts? (4, Insightful)

Eto_Demerzel79 (1011949) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863632)

"Consumers are the final arbiters because they can vote with their wallets," Usher added. "This is as it should be in any well-functioning market, and we believe the improvements in Windows Vista play to this strength."
Usher assumes that those doing the voting comprehend the problem. Also, with billion dollar corporations voting with their wallets, does my vote truly count? This is a case where other companies such as Apple and (name your fav Linux distro here) have an opportunity to distinguish themselves. I would expect most non-slashdotters to not even give a second thought to purchasing Vista with a new PC or for a business unless their are other truly equal (in performance, ease of use, etc...) choices.

Vote with your wallets (1)

PCM2 (4486) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864038)

"Consumers are the final arbiters because they can vote with their wallets," Usher added. "This is as it should be in any well-functioning market, and we believe the improvements in Windows Vista play to this strength."

Usher is failing to take into account one important point, however. In some cases, consumers can't vote with their wallets. In cases where there exists a monopoly, for example.

I so hope it doesn't "fail" (2, Insightful)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863644)

when people are actually forced to honour copyright they might actually start thinking about copyright, and that can only drive people not to want copyright.

Re:I so hope it doesn't "fail" (4, Insightful)

Fulcrum of Evil (560260) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863708)

This has nothing to do with copyright. DRM based solutions are not bound to the terms of copyright so much as whatever the producers decide to allow. That means that if we retroactively set copyright to 5 years for software, DRM is unaffected. Likewise, what motivation does the content provider have to help you when the DRM eats your legal stuff? They'd rather you buy it again.

Re:I so hope it doesn't "fail" (2, Insightful)

McGiraf (196030) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863762)

With unbreakable DRM who needs copyright laws to prevent you from copying stuff?

Re:I so hope it doesn't "fail" (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863798)

Yeah, well obviously people would be thinking they don't want DRM.. that's a given, but the general argument as to why DRM is "ok" is this whole "it's only enforcing copyright" argument.. and that argument might get some people thinking.

Re:I so hope it doesn't "fail" (4, Insightful)

PCM2 (4486) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864014)

when people are actually forced to honour copyright they might actually start thinking about copyright, and that can only drive people not to want copyright.

I fail to see the logic there. I've done a lot of thinking about copyright and I want it.

Copyright is very important. The GPL, among other things, depends on copyright.

Corporations lobbying the government to have grossly exaggerated term lengths for copyrights, on the other hand, is another matter entirely.

What? New Media Formats to Fail? (2, Funny)

mencomenco (551866) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863696)

"It's so consumer-unfriendly that I think it's bound to fail -- and when it fails, it will sink whatever new formats content owners are trying to impose."

Could not possibly happen to a nicer bunch of folks...

Simple question, simple answer (2, Funny)

slughead (592713) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863888)

Are New DRM Technologies Setting Vista Up for Failure?

Nope, it's all that other stuff.

Re:Simple question, simple answer (1)

Programit (1019644) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864034)

Have to agree. Vista promised the world and the only things being pushed as the reason to upgrade are: AERO desktop, - Vital to have a pretty, graphic hungry, slow GUI! - must buy that $500.00 graphic card so I can run my accounting system?

Increased Security - Yes I do really want to delete that file! Really I do, Honest, True , Okay! Please, may I?

Digital entertainment - providing you are watching it alone, on 1 monitor, on one machine, and don't want to use it on your iPod (Or Zume ha ha) - You can always buy the same content again for the ipod, and again for the Zume, and again for your car and again so you wife can watch and again, and again ... .. .. .. .. . . .

Are New DRM Technologies Setting Vista Up for Failure? Too late MS did that!

Forced? (2, Interesting)

OmegaBlac (752432) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863902)

The article notes that many of the DRM technologies were forced upon Vista by the entertainment industry, but that may not garner Microsoft or Hollywood any sympathy with consumers
Funny. It appears to me that Microsoft willingly [slashdot.org] bends over backwards to develop technologies (or patches them quickly [slashdot.org] ) that will aid the major content providers in further restricting consumers' freedoms to do what the hell they want with products that they purchased with their own damn money.

Not the DRM - The Licensing Will (4, Informative)

ironwill96 (736883) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863948)

I work for a University and we recently went to a conference where Microsoft presented some of their new licensing schemes for Vista. We were quite perturbed to say the least. For one, they don't want us to ever use the "Ultimate" version. Here's how the conversation goes with the Microsoft rep:

Microsoft Rep: "So as you can see, Windows Vista Ultimate's CD media costs will be very cheap and each copy will have its own CD key for use in activation."
Us: "So umm..is there volume licensing for the Ultimate version?"
Microsoft Rep: "No, but the CD Media is very cheap!"
Us: "So, you don't want us to use the Ultimate version then?"
Microsoft Rep: "No, you can still use it, you just need to buy an individual CD with an individual key for use with individual product activation!"
Us: "So, basically, you don't want us to use the Ultimate edition then, got it."

Not only are they nuking volume licensing for the highest level products, they are also going to require product activation even with volume licensing! In Windows XP, we have a volume-license key that is embedded in the Image during SysPrep and that key does NOT require activation. Activation is annoying when you are imaging thousands of machines every year. No word yet on whether the volume license activation will be requiring an individual key for every copy of Vista you install (if they even let us make an image of it at all!).

Get ready to add some new acronyms to your books (2, Funny)

denmarkw00t (892627) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863958)

Along with DRM, the article gives us some new terminology:

TPM - Trusted Platform Module
OPM - Output Protection Management
PVP - Protected Video Path
DOM - Directions On Microsoft --oops, W3C may have some problems with that one...

RAID anyone? (1)

Lost Penguin (636359) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863984)

MS seems to want RAID table meta data and DRM seem to want to exist in the same location.
I will not name the hardware maker, but we have had to move the meta data last year to "prepare for Vista."
Now MS has changed the location again, as in DRM just killed your RAID array.
We should have ignored MS and left the meta-data in the old location...

Zune not Vista Compatible yet.... (2, Interesting)

viper21 (16860) | more than 7 years ago | (#16863998)

With reports of the Zune not being Vista Compatible--it does make you wonder how hard it is going to be for other manufacturers to get up to speed on things.

Here we are again, nothing has changed... (4, Insightful)

TheNetAvenger (624455) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864054)

So here we are again, and again the same ignorance and FUD is flying...

Out of all the DRM in Vista, nothing is required, nor even used by MS themselves with the exception of the WGA.

So rant on about the WGA, as I am not a fan of it either.

The rest of the stuff is known or existed in Windows for over 6 years and also exists in OSX.

1.) Music DRM - Already exists in older versions of Windows, it is only used if the online store requires it to be used. Apple iTunes is also DRM, but unlike MS, MS doesn't use the DRM technology in their OS to force you to buy the music from MS as Apple does. If people are POed at DRM, why does Apple get a free pass, when they not only implement the DRM technology but are also the ones requiring it for their own profit in the music industry?

2) HD DRM - Again this is something that has been known for a long time, and if the content provider turns on DRM, I don't care what OS you are using, you will either be subjected to DRM, low quality Video, or not able to play it at all. Vista at least allows compliant HD systems the ability to play this crap, just as the HD players already on the market ALSO HAVE IMPLEMENTED! So we can complain about MS, but they did nothing more than make it so Vista can play HD DRM content, they did NOT restrict anything whatsoever. The finger needs to be pointed at any content providers that use DRM. The only way DRM HD content is going to play on any OS other than Vista is in a low quality analog mode, period. (Unless there is a quite an elaborate hack on the horizon, that by passes several Hardware layers of encryption.) Also, since Intel is the author of the HD DRM crap, should we be angry at them along with the content providers? To follow logic, to be mad at MS for letting Vista play DRM HD Content, then we also should be mad at Sony and Toshiba that made HD and Blu HDDVD players which ALSO SHIP with DRM locking mechanisms, as ALL CONSUMERS players have this crap Intel stuff installed.

3) TPC - Well, everyone though MS was using the (again Intel) TPC for applications, content and 100s of other FUD stories... As Vista ships, the ONLY place TPC is used, is for a BitLocker Drive, and it is only used to store the drive's encryption. However, TPC isn't even required for bitlocker, as long as your computer can boot to a USB drive, MS can store the encryption key needed on the USB Dongle and not need TPC even for bitlocker whatsoever. So instead of TPC being used to lock people out of applications or anything else as the rumor mills were wanting people to believe, Vista only uses it to store encryption information for a volume level encryption technology.

4) WGA - Yep it sucks that MS is using this crap. I know why they are doing it, but I don't fully agree. I understand the mass OEM level copying of the late 90s that prompted the first activation generation with WindowsXP, and sure it hurt both consumers and MS. However by Microsoft using this system, it makes users feel like MS is trying to control them, when it is more the duplication pirate companies out there that this gives the axe to. Also if the OEM or consumers are legit, this doesn't hurt them, especially as MS has backed down on all the EULA crap that had surfaced last month. If you own a real copy you can pretty much do what you want with it.

I won't defend WGA though, MS should know better that the pirates will still get past whatever they need to, and this only annoys the end users, even though I know good people at MS that think they are protecting users with the WGA... Even if they are misguided.

So with another round of the big Vista DRM Scare, the only DRM MS is using is the WGA, which is also in WindowsXP. The rest of the DRM in Vista has always been there, exists in other Oses like OSX and is up to the content providers to screw over customers with or not, MS is nothing more than the company that makes the player to use the Toshiba/Sony analogy...

I think it's funny (2, Insightful)

tkrotchko (124118) | more than 7 years ago | (#16864078)

The author and MS says DRM was forced on MS Vista by the content owners/providers. But that's clearly not the case. XP manages not to have this level of protection and there appears to be plenty of content available for the Windows platform.

I seem to recall that MS pitched their DRM schemes to content owners and providers to convince them that Windows was the only good platform for secure content and essentially achieve lock-in at the content provider level.

At the end of the day, it doesn't matter, but for Microsoft to say "Oh poor us, we didn't want to provide DRM, but we had to!" seems disingenuous at best.
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