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Post by trog @ 01:46pm 14/02/07 | 67 Comments
Bruce Schneier has written an informative article for Forbes titled "Why Vista's DRM Is Bad For You". It begins thusly:
Windows Vista includes an array of "features" that you don't want. These features will make your computer less reliable and less secure. They'll make your computer less stable and run slower. They will cause technical support problems. They may even require you to upgrade some of your peripheral hardware and existing software. And these features won't do anything useful. In fact, they're working against you. They're digital rights management (DRM) features built into Vista at the behest of the entertainment industry.
Definitely worth a read if you're thinking about "upgrading" to Vista. The article is also available on his website.

Oh yeh, and the word on the street is that the processing keys for Blu-Ray and HD-DVD have been found, which seems to indicate the copy protection on these formats has been smashed.


Latest Comments
Posted 03:04pm 14/2/07
Bad troggles, you're spreading unfounded FUD =(

This Bott guy seems to be spreading the reality: http://blogs.zdnet.com/Bott/index.php?cat=16

Nobody knows what the DRM management system will do. Nobody can predict what will happen in the future because of bugs or patches. You really have no idea what you're talking about if you think they've added digital rights management to everything giririsss, it'd be a pointless endeavour.

The DRM was cracked in the case mentioned but it doesn't actually do anything without a reboot, and there are other methods available that require reboots and do similar things apparently. To grab the keys to decrypt content people have been using a very badly coded program that plays HD content and leaves the decryption key visible as plain text in memory.

I think Microsoft is as silly as the next guy when it comes to things like the stories about their layers of management, how much bureaucracy they have, etc. but you really can't go listening to the idiots like the guy who wrote this article that's pinning the idea of DRM on Microsoft. Doesn't Apple implement DRM controls in OSX? Isn't Apple the #1 supplier of DRM encrypted music on the web and all they make is empty claims about wanting DRM to disappear when they stand to gain the most by allowing it to stay? The only reason iTunes exists is to sell iPods, which make huge profits for Apple. Once people no longer believe they're locked into iTunes/iPod if they want the largest variety of music for fairly cheap prices there's no reason for them to not choose cheaper alternative MP3 players (I know you can get around it by burning a CD then ripping it, but most people wouldn't know that or do that.)

This just sounds like another Linux fanboy throwing unfounded accusations at Microsoft to try and gain some more popularity for Linux. Note that when I refer to fanboy, I am referring to those that ignore all facts and praise their chosen target like it's a new religion that'll save their souls from floundering in the bottomless pit of ugly alpacas.
Posted 11:34pm 14/2/07
You're correct, that was a fairly bold statement of mine and I will humbly request that I am able to retract that in favour of a clearer and less broad statement:

The large majority of the people writing articles about the DRM system do not know what it will do in practice, and make broad assumptions based on sections of the documentation which were poorly written. I've read countless articles about how the DRM system in Vista will supposedly downgrade everything you're doing if you play some DRM protected content (like a HD video) without the hardware the entertainment industry requires and fictitious statements about how the system in general is of poor quality, is unstable and you need to reboot it frequently, etc. :/

I'm not defending DRM, I think it's a retarded idea that's aimed at gouging customers to buy the same content multiple times so they can use it on different devices, but I still don't think all the attacks laid on Microsoft based on DRM are justified. Some of them are, naturally, but this guy is quoting The Inquirer which I've found to be a pathetic source of 'facts', it's usually just biased opinions and a load of rubbish. The Inquirer aside, I don't see how not buying Vista is going to fight the entertainment industry, and I think suggesting it is downright absurd. Yes, Vista has the capability to play back DRM infested media, but it is by no means forcing you to purchase or use DRM infested media, it's simply allowing you to play back the content you have purchased. I've no idea where people got the idea that it was :o

Microsoft is in not really in a position to argue with the content provider, they can still release their content to the people who buy HD-DVD and Blu-Ray players. I'm not 100% certain about this but I'm fairly sure there's more consoles/players capable of playing HD disks than there are computers capable of playing them. Same as there is likely more devices capable of playing DVDs than there are computers capable of playing them. It would be as stupid position to take though, so it would seem Microsoft has taken the position of supporting the playback as dictated by the industry and letting the consumer decide whether or not to use protected content.

On the issue of licensing drivers so that they can play back protected content on devices, doesn't it seem fairly obvious that this is a requirement of the entertainment industry? How much would Microsoft be sued for if their system was flawed and they had done nothing to protect it, leading to the leaking of protected HD content? Naturally they'd have to cover their arses and keep everything secure, if they don't they'll have lawyers breathing down their necks.

The mention of Steve Jobs coming out against DRM is empty unless he backs it up with actions, as at the moment Apple stands to gain the most from the continued usage of DRM, as iTunes is the largest music store and it pretty much requires you to buy an iPod to play the music back on if you don't know how to get around it.

Microsoft is a monopoly. They want to extend that monopoly to other areas and attempt to feed their insatiable greed which is causing them to sell things at borderline ridiculous profits (5 year old operating systems, Vista/Office Ultimate flavour, etc.) I agree that the winner of this miniature war will be whoever makes things easy, cheap and accessible, and I don't think it will be Microsoft. I am quite certain that they want to take over the entertainment playback industries, their X-Box media centre, Windows Media Centre and Zune demonstrate that they definitely wish to go far in those industries, but that doesn't necessarily mean they want to inflict their DRM on everybody. At the moment you need DRM to be able to sell most music, the current entertainment industry will not let you sell many songs as simple MP3s so they really have no choice regardless of their desires.

The best way to fight against DRM is to not buy content encrypted with it. Don't buy HD-DVDs or Blu-Ray disks, don't buy DRM encrypted songs from iTunes or Microsoft's stores. But not buying systems that are capable of playing DRM encrypted content for that reason alone is ridiculous. Buying devices or software that can play back the content is meaningless if you don't buy any of the content, and I personally feel that is the better way to fight DRM.

If you don't want to buy or acquire Vista for a really good reason then don't, but having the capability to play back DRM encrypted content is really not a good reason. In an ideal world DRM wouldn't be necessary, but the system isn't doing any harm if you don't use it. The claims that it significantly impacts performance, stability and responsiveness are completely absurd and unfounded, created by people that just have some personal score to settle with Microsoft. The large majority of Vista users have reported no such problems, in fact they're claiming it is stable, fast and snappy. Those with problems are usually caused by the absolutely horrendous drivers nVidia provides for Vista and likely the drivers ATi and other vendors provide as well. No system is perfect, least of all a new operating system, but to blame Microsoft for everything is getting a little tiring. ;)

All of that said, I don't consider myself to be a Microsoft fanboy. If you give me some damn good evidence to prove that Vista is an unstable bloated piece of manure with a large number of people agreeing to your verifiable tests then please, go ahead. Also, if you can find me a Linux distribution that isn't overly complicated with an interface that wasn't designed by someone that also wrote the code for it and a large variety of applications that fit the same criteria I'll swap in a heartbeat. Until suck time though, I'm going to use Microsoft products as they are simpler and easier to use - I'd rather use my computer for useful tasks then spend hours trying to recompile kernels to update graphics drivers or something similar :)
Posted 01:18am 15/2/07
the way microsoft has patched xp (pro) to make it in my opinion a quite stable and decent OS...i would of thought ppl would no way be rushing to upgrade to vista...

i guess in today's society...it really is that mentality..'must have new, must have now'.

HD dvd and blu-ray will sell S*** loads because of common mentality...MUST HAVE...NEW..MUST HAVE NOW..

i guess in a way it does push the industry to continuously create new products and improve but really...do we need it all? saturation level...i don't even think that exists anymore.

Posted 05:18am 15/2/07
DRM is definatly crap but people are equally crap for going 'ohh buy music' and handing over their CCs

Funny thing is here, while trog and I cry about it, we're implimenting some of the largest use of DRM in Australia today, we've put in two game drms in the last 2 years, one from Exent and one from Macrovision, and rebuild Bigpond Music, who are extencive users of MS DRM

The most frustrating thing with that is there are so many better ways to manage and distribute media that are more convienient to the public and I'd love to do that, but cant because of the way in which we have to do the license request...

Dumping DRM on music would not only allow users to store on multiple devices, it would allow music sites to be more customer friendly and easier to use there by improving the overall experience and satisfaction of the user.
Posted 10:30am 15/2/07
The first part was to give perspective on my point which was
Dumping DRM on music would not only allow users to store on multiple devices, it would allow music sites to be more customer friendly and easier to use there by improving the overall experience and satisfaction of the user.

Posted 10:34am 15/2/07
to explain it further for slow people like jim, that ignoring the fact that its generally bad, its equally bad for other reasons, in that it stifles innovation in the delivery of content.

Apple's iTunes was considered this, however the reality was that they were unconstrained by the types of drm being deployed by other providers to develop itunes that way...

I'm sure there are plenty of p2p applications that are equally innovative however they arent seen that way because they are designed to just distribute the file, not license it first.
Posted 05:20pm 15/2/07
Did someone say "Vista the bloated piece of Microsoft-DRM-infested-piece-of-crap" ?

Holy Handgrenades! Batman!



vLite 0.8 beta
2007.01.15 by nuhi
Joy and happiness...Vista on a single CD!
Talking about the 32-bit version.
Depending on the OS image used it can go down to about 650MB ISO, while the Ultimate version is around 675MB, with all removed. On top of that with all removed you still have almost all the functionalities of a full XP.

Looked at some stats and it turns out that when a 1GB machine is used with the Vista Lite, vLite can save you up to a 600MB ! of free space in the RAM memory compared to a full version. I find that amazing, and the general usage is much faster even on my Core 2 Duo. Not to mention the 5GB smaller install.

I think nazi Bill's evil operating system needs a good spanking!.

I've been running TinyXP (by the eXPerience guy) for quite a while now (including all the hotfixes, applications on install, etc) and its the best thing I've ever done.

I am willing to bet give it, enough time and "someone" will 'release' a certain TinyVista with all the DRM removed.

So we can get back to this thing called "AN-OPERATING-SYSTEM" not just an overbloated piece of software that runs your computer.

WHO in their RIGHT MIND would want to run Windows Media Player, Outlook Express or Internet Explorer when you've got VLC Media Player, Firefox and Thunderbird.

Sure Linux can do gaming. But what's the point when you need to pay for CEDEGA. ;)

last edited by Kimbo at 17:20:00 15/Feb/07
Posted 11:58pm 16/2/07
I just still think that Micro$haft should release an operating system not something that can walk my dog, clean my house, cook my dinner and read Charles Elliot all the while trying consume even more RAM.

Not to say "Lets all go back to Windows 98." But at the end of the day this is one operating massive system that will no doubt have Netbios installed, The RPC Server installed and have more open ports than a bordello during the swinging 20s in Paris.

Half the reason Vista will be using so much darn memory is because of the services that VISTA runs. Half of which you don't need. Sure you need a few services. But surely you wouldn't need "that many". Because services are exactly the thing thats taking up RAM and its why Windows Vista would be such a memory hog. Theres countless articles on the net about "Windows" and "its services".

Also if anyone remembers the Blaster worm. Yes you remember that little piece of programming marvel don't we. Windows seriously needs to have some services turned off period.
Posted 12:02am 17/2/07
As for legality.


Hmm let's see. 454 AUD for Windows Vista Ultimate?. I'm sorry Bill. But sometimes your prices are just a bit insane.


or 688 AUD for the next best full thing. I don't see many people rushing out to buy this one. Not - just - yet anyway.
Posted 11:09am 18/2/07
Post by Crizane Tribal @ 08:03am
Does anyboduy else find WMP 11 to be a bloated, unstable piece of s***? I find it vastly inferior to 10 and even 9. Also, Firefox is for noobs who want to feel leet.
...never used 11...but 10 works fine..

ur totally wrong about firefox...firefox+noscript..=best browsing experience ever.
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