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Apple To Play Fairer With FairPlay? 153

NewbieMonster writes "According to, Apple is about to license its Fairplay DRM to Made for iPod accessory manufacturers. It's reported that Apple will also allow streaming of protected AAC content via USB. Could this signal a move to allowing other music players to access and play ITMS content?" From the article: "The expected announcements could signal a move on Apple's part to take some of the sting out of its Fairplay DRM which has come in for a great deal of criticism over recent months. It may also be a way of keeping Made For iPod makers onside, as the draw of the Microsoft Zune becomes stronger." Anyone noticed the draw of the Microsoft Zune becoming stronger?
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Apple To Play Fairer With FairPlay?

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  • No (Score:5, Informative)

    by DreadSpoon ( 653424 ) on Tuesday January 16, 2007 @09:19PM (#17639594) Journal
    No, it is not cracked.

    The iTMS (iTunes Music Store) was cracked, meaning that people were able to buy DRM-free songs from iTMS using custom software. iTMS 6.0 changed that, and to date, it is not possible to buy unencrypted music from an account registered with iTMS 6.0 or higher. It's possible to run older iTMS versions (for now) and buy music, but some of us had extensive music purchases before we got our heads out of our butts and realized we wanted to play the music on something other than an iPod.

    The DRM encryption itself is completely uncracked. IF you can get a hold of your decryption key, there is code to decrypt your music files. Apple has done a rather amazing job of keeping that key secured, though. It's pretty much impossible to pull it off of newer iPods, and I think it's not possible yet to extract it from a box with iTunes 6+.

    If I'm wrong about that, let me know... I've got 250+ encrypted songs I'd really like to play on my Linux box with its superior sound setup, instead of on my iBook.
  • Re:No (Score:4, Informative)

    by wealthychef ( 584778 ) on Tuesday January 16, 2007 @09:39PM (#17639802)
    I've got 250+ encrypted songs I'd really like to play on my Linux box with its superior sound setup, instead of on my iBook.

    You may already know about this, but here is how to un-DRM your songs: simply burn them to an audio CD, then re-import them from the CD's. Sure, you theoretically lose sound quality this way, but I cannot tell the difference, and I'll bet if I blindfolded you, you couldn't either.

    This is a bit tedious when done by hand for a large number of songs. The only working Macintosh utility to automate this process that I know of is "DRM Dumpster," which uses a single CD-RW over and over to get the job done. Worked great for me. Other utilities seem to have bugs that prevented me from using them.

  • Re:No (Score:5, Informative)

    by dr.badass ( 25287 ) on Tuesday January 16, 2007 @09:51PM (#17639976) Homepage
    Wow... you sound really authoritative, but it seems like you really don't know what you're talking about.

    Nothing in these links contradicts what the parent said. You can't buy unencrypted music with PyMusique anymore, and the DRM encryption is still unbroken. QTFairUse extracts AAC frames from memory, it does not break the encryption.
  • Re:No (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 16, 2007 @10:01PM (#17640102)
    You're wrong on several counts. It used to be the trick to removing DRM was finding the keys. There were several ways to do this, including grabbing them from an iPod, or using a program that pretended to be iTunes and having the iTMS send you the keys. There were also programs that let you purchase music and would store it unencrypted. All of these methods ceased functioning with version 6.0. Prior to 7.0, iTunes would allow the creation and use of iTunes 4.9 accounts, but after 7.0 was released, they began requiring at least version 6.0, so there is no way to get the keys to your music.

    At this point, if anybody knows how to get the keys for iTunes music, they're not talking. This doesn't mean DRM can't be removed. There is a program written in Python that latches onto iTunes like a debugger, has iTunes play DRMed songs, then grabs AAC frames after they've been decrypted but before they've been decoded. It then prevents iTunes from decoding and playing the audio, so a 5 minute song can be decrypted in less than 30 seconds, and it's a lossless transfer (as opposed to burning and ripping). Unfortunately, this program was written for Windows, and I don't believe anyone ever got it working on a Mac. If you can come up with a Windows box, one of the sibling posts has linked to it.

    My interest was the same as yours. I had about $300 invested in my iTunes library, but my media center (and now all my other boxes) runs Linux. I certainly don't want to promote piracy, but I think it's perfectly legitimate to want your music library on a Linux box.

  • Re:No (Score:3, Informative)

    by anethema ( 99553 ) on Tuesday January 16, 2007 @10:13PM (#17640246) Homepage
    It is true, all these programs basically exploit an almost analog-hole type situation. And most of them dont even work anymore.

    None of them broke the encryption in the first place.
  • Re:No (Score:2, Informative)

    by corellen ( 535840 ) on Tuesday January 16, 2007 @10:59PM (#17640778)
    try myFairTunes6_v0.5.8 is unnoffical beta version works with itunes (version 0.5.7b was the latest official version) be warned though its a stream capture hack, it plays back your music via the itunes scripting interface and captures to lossless then reconverts to .m4a and re adds it back to your itunes library.
  • Re:No (Score:2, Informative)

    by QuantumG ( 50515 ) * <> on Tuesday January 16, 2007 @11:41PM (#17641234) Homepage Journal
    Most people don't usually "break encryption" when they crack copy control mechanisms. Breaking encryption is something people write scientific papers about.

    To break copy control, you just re-implement the algorithm and find the keys. Or you let the original code run and grab the unencrypted output.. which is the simplest way.. and yeah, if I gave a shit about iTunes I'd give it a go, but yeah, I don't.
  • iPod != Fair Play (Score:5, Informative)

    by LKM ( 227954 ) on Wednesday January 17, 2007 @06:31AM (#17643792) Homepage
    Anyone noticed the draw of the Microsoft Zune becoming stronger?

    Anyone notice there are still people who don't realize that you can use plain MP3/AAC files with the iPod?

    The Zune has a proprietary DRM system, just like the iPod. It even (illegally, in some cases) ads DRM to your non-DRM'd files if you "squirt" them. Or maybe I'm just not getting something here.

  • Artie strikes again! (Score:3, Informative)

    by LKM ( 227954 ) on Wednesday January 17, 2007 @06:36AM (#17643814) Homepage
    I'm not sure what you're trying to say. Did grandparent call crackers scum? I didn't see that. Who called crackers scum? Some Mac users you know? And you don't think that there are Windows users calling crackers scum? I mean, this just smells of Artie McStrawman []. Mac users aren't one person. There are many different Mac users. Some stupid, some not, just like with most other large groups of people.
  • Re:again.... (Score:3, Informative)

    by Jeff DeMaagd ( 2015 ) on Wednesday January 17, 2007 @12:21PM (#17647490) Homepage Journal
    There was a time when Apple claimed that they'd rather not have DRM at all, that it's forced on them by the labels. Their actions and statements in the past two or three years now say that they really do like DRM.

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