website hit counter January 2005 - Posts - Chris Lanier

January 2005 - Posts

Windows Media DRM10 Cracked?

Final Update :  EXCLUSIVE: Windows Media DRM 10 Crack Updates

 

Update 2:  Update For DRM-Enabled Media Players (KB891122) - http://msmvps.com/chrisl/archive/2005/02/15/36006.aspx

So, the word is that a popular internet magazine in Japan has posted information on how to crack the protected files. It appears that you still need a license for the content to start with, that's kind of a big thing. I'm sure there will be more information about this later.

The software has the file names of "DrmDbg.exe" and "DRM2WMV". DrmDbg.exe is supposed to get the KID and the Seed from memory when a DRM-enabled file is being decrypted/played. That spits out a .key file and DRM2WMV is supposed to take that .key and unprotect the WMV. This would leave you with a WMV file that is entirely unprotected and playable in anything that supports WMV playback.

While this may seem like it's great for fair-use and all, many content owners are upset with the matter. Microsoft has not commented on the issue publicly yet.  It should also be noted that because of the architecture of WMRM this potential break does not mean that the tools will be valid to use in the future.

Edit:  Some people are have a hard time understanding that this is not exactly 100% validated news.  Rather noted by the question mark in the title, and the use of “So, the word is...“, “is supposed to...“, “this potential break“, “supposedly from“, etc.  This is a blog, not CNN.  Information found here may be correct or may not!  There might not have been a break at all!  I can't tell you.  Information on this is not exactly flowing out of many sources, thus information about the supposed cracks, magazine, method, etc are not offered here!  Maybe there is a magazine that published this information, maybe not.  Again, I can't confirm any of this.  Please note this before posting comments, this has been noted since I posted this a few days ago.  If I was 100% sure it was all correct, the post would have been worded differently from the start.  Thanks!  :-)  [Crap replies deleted]

Update:  This is supposedly from the guy who wrote the cracks.  (Thanks trailergod) (Appears to be written by Beale Screamer, not the supposed cracker.  Meaning it's old.)

Update:  Thanks to the information provided by ArchAngelKing, it is looking more and more like there is no crack for DRM10.  If anyone has information otherwise, please post.  :-)

Update 2:  Update For DRM-Enabled Media Players (KB891122) - http://msmvps.com/chrisl/archive/2005/02/15/36006.aspx

Final Update :  EXCLUSIVE: Windows Media DRM 10 Crack Updates

DivXNetworks Continues To Grow, Microsoft Watch Out!

The folks at DivXNetworks are really hitting hard with their codec's!  Microsoft, of course has done little to improve on WMV.  The number of standalone DVD Players supporting DivX is growing.  In the US, I have not seen a single player released featuring WMV9 decode.  I believe it's Philips who sales a cheapo DVD player with DivX support for well under $100.

New offerings coming from DivX include..

  • DivX Fusion Player
  • DivX Fusion Codec update
  • DivX Fusion SDK
  • DivX Media Format

As they are now saying “DivX is far more than just a codec”.  The new DivX Media Format will have the extension of .divx getting away from the .avi extension.  The new DivX Media Format will support XSUB subtitles, Alternate audio tracks, Interactive video menus, XTAG video tags.  They are claiming that that DivX Fusion Codec can outperform WMV9 and H.264, not sure about both of those however.  You can read more at DivX Labs.

 

So, Microsoft wants up with WMV?  Not only is DivX more support in CE players but they also offer great tools for encoding from just about any source.  You have Dr. DivX which can encode from a live source, ripped DVD, DV, and just about everything else.  It's a simple wizard based application.  The Windows Media Encoder is great, but where is the application for point and click converting to WMV?  It's not Windows Movie Maker and it's not the Windows Media Encoder.

Posted by chrisl | 7 comment(s)
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Verizon Picks Microsoft's TV Platform

Verizon Selects Microsoft TV as Software Platform for FiOS TV Service
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2005/jan05/01-28VerizonFiOSServicePR.asp

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Annoying MCE "My Music" Problem and Fix

I decided to hit on some of my MCE issues today, so here's anyone you might have seen.  I use MCE for music more then anything else.  Being able to go through my rather large music collection via my remote from anywhere in the room is nice.  My problem was however, that if you have the screensaver active and or monitor go into sleep then when you hit the remote or mouse again the Taskbar would be in front of MCE.  Tapping a button on the remote, keyboard or moving the mouse would send MCE back to fullscreen.  This is a pain and I have never seen a proper fix for it.

So, here's what you do.  The fix is to check a rather dumb option in WMP and it will be fixed!  Open WMP and goto Tools>>Options.  Check "Allow screensaver during playback" under the Player tab.  Now, it's fixed!

This needs to be something MCE does for WMP upon launch.  Some people do not want this setting checked when they are just using WMP, but using MCE you really need it to be checked.  The bad part is that a year or so ago there was an application developed to stop MCE from doing just this.  It's in TGB Download Center and is called the "Screen Saver Prevention" program.

Posted by chrisl | 6 comment(s)
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Annoying MCE "My Pictures" Problem

Have you ever wanted to play a slideshow of a large folder of photos and you want it to be in a random order? Besides the current "1st picture bug", it drive me nuts how long and and many steps it takes to do this. Lets count it out shall we?

My Pictures>>More Info>>Settings>>Pictures>>Show pictures in random order>>Save>>Back

Why does it take that many steps just to play a slideshow in random order? Then I have to do the same thing again to turn it off! Way to many steps for something that could much simpler.

Posted by chrisl | 6 comment(s)
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HP z545 Updates Relased. HD Audio, BIOS, Media Info Display, USB Fix

HP has released a number of fixes for it's z545 Digital Entertainment Center in the past few days.  If you have purchased one check out the new downloads and updates for your system.

HP z545 Digital Entertainment Center Software & Driver Downloads
http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/softwareList?dlc=en&lc=en&product=435776&lang=en&cc=us&os=228

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Codec's = New Age DLL Hell? Hell Yes

Furrygoat writes, Are Codecs the Next DLL Hell?  I will be the first to tell you yes, and it will be a huge downfall of the HTPC (Or PC used for any type of audio and/or video decoding or encoding).

 

Alright, I know more then the average person when it comes to audio and video decoding.  That's a problem!  The average person on the web searches there favoirte search engine for “codec” and will mainly get a bunch of crappy sites offering pirated and hacked codec downloads.  These Codec Packs, as some refer to them, are hell on your PC.  They will install a number of codec's that you don't need or want.  However, many people think it's the more the merrier type of thing here.  The truth is far from this!  Taking MCE PC's for example, the MPEG-2/DVD decoder is a rather large part of it working or not.  Most “Codec Packs” include at least one (and it some cases up to 4) MPEG-2 decoders.  Okay, that is a huge problem for anyone running Media Center.  You now have a number of codec's that are basically wanting to decode the video, and only one can win for it to take place.

 

Another huge issue is that everyone in the world is now developing DirectShow codec's/decoders.  Install Nero and you get MPEG-2 decoders, MPEG-2 encoders, MPEG-4 decoders, MPEG-4 encoders and more!  Install Sonic Primetime and you get the same.  Tons of applications now install decoders and encoders (collectivity “codec's”) and all of them like to register themselves as the highest pritory with DirectShow.  DirectShow is this magically part of DirectX that allows Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, RadLight, DVDShrink, PowerDVD, WinDVD, Media Center (MCE), MusicMatch Jukebox, Nero, Easy CD Creator, and just about any program you use for playing back audio and/or video to decode or encode video and audio.  Some codec's don't always follow the best way of registering themselves, for example some applications re-register there own codec's everytime that program is launch.  This is great if you have PowerDVD on your machine and you want to play a DVD.  However, it not so great when you want or have other DVD decoders installed that might be being used by a different applications via DirectShow.  In turn, that other application is likely trying to use PowerDVD's codec's even though you might want it to use Nero's or NVIDIAs!

 

Another big issue is that these companies are wanting there codec's to decode everything.  Not only does the DivX codec from DivXNetworks decode DivX, but wll also do XviD and 3ivX decoding.  The 3ivX Suite decodes 3ivX, XviD, and DivX IIRC.  So you get people installing DivX, XviD and 3ivX becuase they all have different names, and all the decoders can basically do the same thing (Not always true, decode quality can be very different).  In addition with Nero and Easy CD Creator (I think Easy CD does, don't quote me on that) shipping with MPEG-4 decoders, they will generally also decode XviD and DivX.  Are you counting how many things on the system can decode the same content?  It's too many!

 

Microsoft has always been slow to correctly address these problems, and they really are problems.  They can't address or fix people on the Internet being dumb and offering packs of pirated and hacked codec's (Or maybe they can, that's copyrighted materials people) but I would say a good 60-70% of the problems people have with WMP is because of codec's.  People have issues with MCE and codec's all the time.  The main problem is that a large pool of companies are the problem (or maybe it's just Microsoft with DirectShow, I don't know).  Microsoft should take a stand and do a good job of educating people on what codec's are, what they do, how to find out what codec is used in a file, where to download the correct codec, etc.

A Few More WMP Help Articles

Guide To Error C00D11DA In Windows Media Player
http://msmvps.com/chrisl/articles/33496.aspx

Guide To Error 800C2F0D and 800C2F05 In Windows Media Player (Certificate Issues)
http://msmvps.com/chrisl/articles/34030.aspx

Guide To Error C00D277F In Windows Media Player
http://msmvps.com/chrisl/articles/33532.aspx

Individualization Troubleshooting With DRM
http://msmvps.com/chrisl/articles/21723.aspx

Posted by chrisl | with no comments

ISF Certification and Media Center TV Tuners

Sean Alexander has posted a few times now on one of the most interesting things that was announced back when MCE 2005 shipped, that is that  Imaging Science Foundation (ISF) is now certifying new video and TV tuners for Media Center PC's.  Sean also did a write up on what this means to the average person and what it means to Media Center PC's.  The latest bit of news this that ATI launched there TV Tuner with ISF Certification today.  I have kind of heard mixed reviews to this point about the card and if it really does what it says.  Sean Again, is saying that the new ATI TV Wonder Elite TV is a great card and sets the bar high for future tuners.  I would love to be able to get my hands on one of the card and see how big a difference it is.  Better looking SDTV is still something that is going to be a high point for PC's for the next few years.  HDTV might be coming, but a very large number of people still only have an SDTV and/or no HD service/reception.  Hopfully I can pick up one of the cards at some point.  The price point for them is a bit high now, I think the suggested price is $150.  Remember that's only SD and you can pick up a PVR-150 for less then $70. 

Posted by chrisl | with no comments
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Introducing The Orb Community by TGB

If you haven't heard of Orb, you should really have a look and check them out. What is Orb? Orb gives you secure access to the digital media on your home PC through a simple web interface. Orb streams your content safely to virtually any internet-connected device. Just install the Orb software on your PC, then access your media anywhere!

Get a FREE TRIAL for your MCE!
https://my.orb.com/orb/getOrb.jsp

The Orb Community
http://orb.thegreenbutton.com/

Posted by chrisl | 1 comment(s)
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BUG: Computer stops responding when you transfer DRM files to a portable device

SYMPTOMS
On a computer with hyperthreading enabled, when you transfer lots of Microsoft Windows Media files that are protected with Digital Rights Management (DRM) to a portable music player device, Microsoft Windows Media Player 9 may stop responding (hang) and the transfer may stop.

RESOLUTION
This bug was corrected in Windows XP Service Pack 2 and in Windows Media Player 10.

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;891663

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My Movies 1.1 Update for MCE 2005

Changes:

  • Import button for DVD Profiler users.
  • Supports multiple files, if you create a .m3u or .wpl playlist file.
  • French data grabber.
  • All covers are now converted to thumbnails, and "online" icons are put on online covers.
  • Support for .ts and .dvr-ms files.
  • A lot of fixes, among them currentViewingTitleAdditionalHeight error, playTitle() bug on some extenders, Online title view bug, and more.

TGB Forum Thread
http://www.thegreenbutton.com/community/shwmessage.aspx?ForumID=26&MessageID=88200

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TiVoToGo Copy Protection Weak?

Well, this could be smart or very stupid depending on your point of view.  TiVoToGo files are supposed to be protected when they get to the PC, but it appears that the protection it very weak and basically a waste!  You can just open the files in GraphEdit, insert a MPEG 2 Demuxer and MPEG 2 Muxer, connect the pins, and output a non-protected MPEG-2 file.  Just with that simple graph someone can make an application to do this in a batch mode, and you have non-protected files to do whatever with.

Via PVRBlog and Engadget

Posted by chrisl | 2 comment(s)
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WMAPro Gets More Hardware Support!

Until now the VSX-59TXi from Pioneer was one of the only A/V Receivers to feature WMA Professional decode.  That might sound great and all, but the price tag for the VSX-59TXi is $4500,00.  That's not exactly cheap and not a price to reach the masses at, but fear not Pioneer is releasing several new AVR's that support WMAPro decode and are rather cheap!  Sean Alexander has posted the new models that will start at a very nice $275!  Why is WMA Professional decoe important you might ask?  Well, if you have purchased any of the WMV-HD disc's they are encoded with 5.1 WMAPro audio.  With WMP 10 installed and a compatible sound card you will be able to send the WMAPro 5.1 track out SPDIF to the receiver!  You can also encode anything yourself with the Windows Media Encoder and send that out with WMP 10.  With the Windows Media Encoder and WMAPro you can encoded at 24-bit, 96kHz and up to 7.1 channels!  I really wish more companies would start making devices that support WMAPro.  Both set-top and portable would be very nice to see.
Posted by chrisl | 14 comment(s)
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A Few Quick Notes

I've been kind of busy as of late, but here's a few of the top posts from a few other people that I found interesting.

Thomas Hawk -  Poor First Impressions for TiVoToGo
http://thomashawk.com/2005/01/poor-first-impressions-for-tivotogo.html

Peter Near - In Depth: Media Center Extenders - Xbox vs HP
http://www.thenears.com/index.php?p=80

Sean Alexander - New Job (Longhorn guy now) and Blog Update
http://blog.seanalexander.com/PermaLink,guid,e8fe038d-e1f6-4ca5-9627-f98e8f8c3839.aspx

Peter Near - Windows Media Connect vs Windows Media Center Extender
http://www.thenears.com/index.php?p=86

Posted by chrisl | with no comments

Another New MCE Plug-In! Comics for Media Center

If Garfield was not enough for you how about adding Peanuts, BC, Big Nate, Dilbert, Drabble, Get Fuzzy, Liberty Meadows, Over the Hedge, Pearls before Swine, Penny Arcade, Wizard of Id and Rudy Park!  That's right, just a few days after finishing up Garfield, Danee has started and finished Comics for Media Center.

Comics for Media Center
http://www.mcesoft.nl/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=70&Itemid=143

Posted by chrisl | 2 comment(s)
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New OnSpot (Online Spotlight) Features

Sean Alexander has an interesting new post about new content being added to OnSpot (MCE's Online Spotlight section)  I will let everyone read wat Sean has to say (Mostly because I really don't think I could add anything to it), but here are a few screenshots of just a few of the new items!

 

New items include:

  • Yahoo! TV
  • XM Satellite Radio Online
  • titanTV Big Screen Program Guide
  • Fox Sports Net Virtual Coach
  • KMS Software World Trivia 1.0
  • KMS Software Contacts v1.0
  • Discovery Networks Interactive Guide
  • More!

 

Read More: More OnSpot Applications
http://blog.seanalexander.com/PermaLink,guid,585c3814-ec74-4e5c-bc20-6e846511d38d.aspx

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Want MCE 2006 Information?

In the third look at the future of current Microsoft technologies we take a look at where Windows Media Center Edition is heading.

This year will see the release of a small update for Windows Media Center Edition 2005. Bringing the Media Center Edition version up to v4.0.

<<Information removed upon request>>

Posted by chrisl | 5 comment(s)
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