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AnyDVD HD removes AACS encryption from HD DVDs, allowing users to play movies on non-HDCP compliant hardware

AnyDVD, a software favorite for DVD movie aficionados, has hit the HD era. SlySoft has quietly released AnyDVD HD over the weekend, offering similar decryption capabilities as its standard-definition version.

AnyDVD HD removes AACS encryption from HD DVDs, which will also allow the user to watch movies over a digital display connection without HDCP compliant graphics card and display. The software will also enable PowerDVD Ultra to run titles released by Studio Canal, The Weinstein Company, Kinowelt and Optimum Releasing—studios whose movies previously did not run on the PC player.

Another feature of AnyDVD HD is what SlySoft calls “magic file replacement” to remaster any commercial movie disc using simple XML scripts. These scripts will “magically” replace the files on the physical disc so that the user can customize discs without making a copy to a hard drive.

“We could only begin our development some weeks ago and we are immensely proud to get this product out to the users so quickly,” said Peer van Heuen, one of SlySoft’s lead developers. “This speaks to the commitment to our users: get good and easy-to-use products out on the market fast!”

Other features carried over from AnyDVD include the removal of CSS encryption and region codes from DVD movies, allowing for a user’s free reign over the optical format for backup purposes. AnyDVD is capable of removing unwanted movie features, including subtitles and prohibition messages such as copyright and FBI warnings.

While the release of AnyDVD HD seems to be more than coincidental with the discovery of the Processing Key that defeats all HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc protections, SlySoft maintains that its development was independent of what the hacking community accomplished.

“The way AnyDVD HD addresses and solves the problem doesn't have much in common with the discoveries of individual members of the Open Source community in reading AACS keys from the USB bus,” said Peer van Heuen. “As one can expect from SlySoft, our solution works fully automatic with all known titles while the so-called hacker tools require laborious reading out of memory or the USB bus. This is not to say that their efforts are completely fruitless; it’s just that ours need to be user-friendly. It’s just that simple.”

The current version of AnyDVD HD supports only HD DVD, but given the similarities in copy protection, SlySoft said that a version of its software that will support Blu-ray Disc is not far off.

“When we considered Blu-Ray, our strategy was simply to initially support HD-DVD and await further developments in the marketplace. Already during the beta phase we got many inquiries about Blu-ray so we decided to go ahead and also provide support for this as soon as possible,” added Tom Xiang, SlySoft’s Marketing Director. “Blu-ray employs the same AACS process as HD-DVD. An implementation was really just a matter of form. A beta version is planned for availability this quarter.”

AnyDVD HD is priced at $79 by itself or as an upgrade from AnyDVD for $30. The software may also be first downloaded for a free 21-day trial.

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RE: Another blow to the DMCA...
By bottle23 on 2/19/2007 8:34:29 PM , Rating: 5
Its not a blow to DMCA.

Its a blow to DRM technology in general. Once again, its proven that DRM doesn't work. Even when its marketed to the clueless content providers as an "anti-piracy" enforcement tool. It has yet to effectively prove it in the real world.

As far as I'm concerned, its a "control" mechanism. Its invasive. What gives them to right to enforce what I do on MY computer?

The PC industry wasn't based on reverse engineering, it was always and has been an open platform. In the past, hardware makers use to provide technical specs such that, if you want, you would be able to write your own driver!

Reverse engineering was used to ensure the possiblity of competitors. (as in the case with the BIOS).

What content providers are trying to do, is turn the PC into a closed platform. Locking it down by using hardware, software infrastructure, and the law. This is to ensure their business model will remain largely unchanged.

DRM was never about piracy. DRM is about control. The control of end-user behaviour to guarantee the flow of future profit. (Check out Apple's implementation of Intel's EFI in their Macs. That's one from of DRM to ensure OSX only runs on what Apple allows).

Unless you want the law to gun your ass into the ground, no one reversed engineered anything! The AACS specs are publically available. All people did was study it and look for weakspots in its implementation. There has been no hardcore direct hacking or reverse engineering of AACS to circumvent it. Such actions are breaking the law.

You work around it. Study how it works, and implement mechanisms to expose the weakness of the implementation itself.

Why charge through the heavily fortified front gate when you can go around the side and enter via the secret passage?

I can see why Content Providers don't support Linux. Linux, like the PC hardware itself, is based on the principle of being open. Its a direct contradiction to what content providers want.

Besides, no one in their right mind would compile and enable DRM features on their distro. That's like shooting yourself in the foot with a shotgun! (You simply die because of unpopularity!)

RE: Another blow to the DMCA...
By masher2 on 2/19/07, Rating: 0
RE: Another blow to the DMCA...
By bottle23 on 2/19/2007 9:32:29 PM , Rating: 3
Are you an idiot? Do you even know what DRM is for?

DRM is not about dissuading people. Its about control.

How is DRM working if its not serving its intended purpose?

As in, its not restricting, or controlling the access and usage of data. (in this case HD content). Its not stopping unauthorized duplication of copyright material. (ripping or copying)

Every attempt to implement such technology has resulted in failure.

Sony's rootkited DRM CDs?
(officially called "Extended Copy Protection")
=> Miserable Failure (Public awareness of the security issues it brought, killed it...Sony recalled affected CDs)

DVD copy protection (CSS and Region coding)
=> Failure (DVD Jon and company)

=> Failure (eg: AnyDVD, DVDFab Decrypter, etc)

=> Failure (proven by the application mentioned in this article and hackers via different means)

Windows Media DRM
=> Failure (eg: FairUse4WM)

Intel's EFI (implemented in Macs)
=> Failure (Hackers...Its demonstrated time and again that you can run OSX on a regular joe PC).

Apple's FairPlay
=> Failure (Thank you DVD Jon for QTFairUse)

Trusted Platform Module or TPM (on motherboards)
=> No one has used it specifically for DRM purposes. Its actually used for security instead. (as noted in Vista's BitLocker and Enforcer on Linux).

I have yet to see anyone release a distro that has Enforcer enabled. In fact, Enforcer itself hasn't been maintained in almost 3yrs! (Which means in the open-source world, its as good as DEAD).

"So if you want to save the planet, feel free to drive your Hummer. Just avoid the drive thru line at McDonalds." -- Michael Asher

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