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Microsoft

Zune DRM Cracked 232

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the that-took-a-bit-longer-than-epected dept.
An anonymous reader noted that Zune Scene is reporting that the Zune DRM has been cracked with software now available that strips the DRM from Zune Marketplace tracks and those shared with WiFi.
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Zune DRM Cracked

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 15, 2007 @10:58AM (#19867221)
    It means someone bought a Zune.
    • by CSHARP123 (904951) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:14AM (#19867399)
      No wonder, They sold the sixth one now.
    • by gilesjuk (604902) <.giles.jones. .at. .zen.co.uk.> on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:57AM (#19867821)
      Actually, it might even increase sales, which all goes to show how DRM isn't good for hardware sales.
      • Actually, it might even increase sales, which all goes to show how DRM isn't good for hardware sales.

        I doubt anyone will buy a Zune over this. A few might but it's just as big a con as the "get paid for sharing pirated music" story next to it. The bait is that you will use some kind of M$ subscription to build a music collection, then liberate it. The problems are that WMA is shit and M$ will break it. The same scheme has been available for previous generations of Windoze DRM players and all of them

      • by jelle (14827) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @03:05PM (#19869517) Homepage
        Actually, it might even increase sales, which all goes to show how DRM isn't good for hardware sales.

        Since DRM is about selling the customer _less_, how is it a surprise that DRM isn't good for sales?

    • by Divebus (860563) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @12:12PM (#19867977)
      Wow. It took this long for someone to care.
    • A lot of people bought Zunes as gifts for kids and grandkids. Old people believe slick salesmen who say "it is the same as an iPod." Both of the kids that didn't return their Zunes and buy an iPod should be happy the DRM has been cracked.
      • by Liquidrage (640463) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @03:13PM (#19869575)
        Shoot. I liked mine better then the iPod's at the time it was released.

        Not really sure why anyone would total diss it other then hype/marketing/backlash/etc.. It's not like iTunes was a DRM free happy land when the Zune was launched either.
        Interface was no worse then iPOD (seriously, I'd love to see someone that has actually used both try and claim the interface sucked or was somehow worse), storage for the price point was the same, Zune had bigger screen which was a feature I wanted since I use it for carrying around photos and listening to the radio as much as MP3's.

        It was a decent product, sales have been so-so but nothing special. But it just gets too much flask IMO because it's MS and not Apple.
        Hell, apple could probably launch a $600 phone with virtually no 3rd party apps and that can't even send pictures in text messages and people would probably buy it.
        • by Locutus (9039)
          But it just gets too much flask IMO"


          Now there's a use for the Zune. Make a flask out of it. For one, it's not going to grab any attention and a non-functioning screen can just be explained as 'it's a Microsoft product and just like the Xbox, it doesn't always work right'.


          LoB

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by macslut (724441)
          You say that as if the iPod has been updated since the Zune came out. It hasn't. All that's really changed is that the Zune has dropped to almost $50 less than the 30GB iPod and people still aren't buying it. The Zune may have a bigger screen, but the iPod has a *better* screen. Of course the iPhone has an even better/bigger screen, but sticking with the iPod/Zune comparison, the interface for the Zune does suck compared to the iPod. Sorry, but a fake scroll-wheel doesn't cut it. It's even worse when y
          • by Liquidrage (640463) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @06:01PM (#19870863)
            I didn't say it as anything has changed.
            And seriously. You opinion on the interface was very convincing. It sucks because it sucks. What does it actually do worse.
            If you pick the thing up you can navigate through songs/albums/artists/media/etc very quickly and easily. Hence, it doesn't suck.
            Everyone's going to have a preference (though 90% of the ones I'm going to read about the zune I can rightfully dismiss as people that have no clue what their talking about). But I've yet to see the race between zune and iPod users finding music or using the device in other ways.
            Oh yeah, and the better screen. I guess the specs are arguable. But "better" in most cases is subjective. Never had a problem with my screen, and bigger is better on a device of similar size. It's easier for people to see pics of my dog/cat/wife/car/whatever on the zune then it would be on a comparable iPod. In fact, I really wanted to Zen Vision W, but it was just a tad too big to be carried around.

            But I know I know. Apple is great, MS sucks. Your statements were very thought out.
            • It's much larger and heavier than an iPod. The interface is not as simple or intuitive, but clunky.

              Even aside from that, at time of launch it cost more than a simmilar iPod!

              The only thing the Zune ever had going for it was WiFi. And Microsoft botched that up so bad it's ridiculous (why no Zireless sync? Why no wirless purchase of music?)

              The fact that they went to the trouble and expense to include WiFi but not include these basic features people would WANT it for is ridiculous. and indicates they did not do
        • The main thing wrong with the Zune was it was too expensive.

          The iPod is the iPod. Love it or hate it. But there is an entire group of industries that have sprung up around it for cases, speakers, car adapters, microphones, software, so that when you buy an iPod, you have your choice of "stuff".

          Along comes the Zune. It's kinda like the iPod, a little bit more Soviet looking, but for consumers, kinda the same. Except no comparable infrastructure like the iPod. So you're pioneer, but with no upside, becaus
          • Totally agree. Also, the marketing was awful. It was like iPod x2 hipness factor crammed down my throat. Welcome to the social complete with overly hipp people jamming on their zune.

            If I wanted an "in" thing, or something that was to be my "media center" is was right out. Though combined with a 360 I found it amusing if nothing else.
            But when I was looking to upgrade my rio to something that did images music and radio, it was a good buy IMO and still worthwhile since it does what I want it to do well.
    • by Locutus (9039)
      my first thought was that Microsoft employees probably already has access to the unDRM'ed music so what's the big deal.

      LoB
    • by mrmeval (662166)
      And as soon as the went blind looking at the link in the article they dropped and broke it.
  • At last... (Score:5, Funny)

    by darien (180561) <darien.gmail@com> on Sunday July 15, 2007 @10:59AM (#19867231)
    This is the announcement that's been so desperately needed to kickstart Zune sales...
  • And yet... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by The One and Only (691315) * <[ten.hclewlihp] [ta] [lihp]> on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:01AM (#19867251) Homepage
    No one cares. Breaking AACS, iTunes, or even CSS was a big (albeit inevitable) deal, but I suspect most of us just shrug this story off for one simple reason--Microsoft, with its ill-thought-out strategy of expanding into every conceivable market at once, at whim, and with no controlling strategy has made itself an irrelevant bit player in multiple markets.
    • You cant blame Microsoft. This crack was a really long time coming all things considered. I guess if it was more popular somebody might have cared to crack it sooner. I still think congratulations are in order for surviving this long. Also, even if buying a Zune seems somewhat silly, this provides an interesting statistic on the ongoing failures of DRM.
    • Re:And yet... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by AusIV (950840) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:26AM (#19867523)
      This strikes me as somewhat different than breaking AACS, FairPlay, or CSS. If you bought something restricted by one of those formats, it's plausible you want to remove the DRM so you can play it on a platform that is technically capable of playing it, and restricted solely by the DRM. You've paid for the media, and you want to play it on another platform.


      The difference with the Zune's DRM is that it effectively allows music "rentals" through WiFi sharing. People can "squirt" each other a song then remove the DRM, effectively getting the song for free. Not much different than pirating off of p2p networks, but it does mean Microsoft has created an incredibly effective piracy device.

      For the rest, I agree. Microsoft has tried to over expand, making itself irrelevant in quite a few markets. In the process, they've half-assed their position in their original market, alienating a lot of customers. I've had several more technical friends switch to Linux, and less technical friends switch to Macs in the time since MS has started focusing more on running everything than making a solid OS. Microsoft needs to seriously reconsider their priorities if they want to avoid becoming irrelevant in all of their markets.

      • Re:And yet... (Score:4, Insightful)

        by EMeta (860558) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:43AM (#19867699)
        "...since MS has started focusing more on running everything than making a solid OS."

        What is this magical, mystical time period you're talking about where making a solid OS was a successful MS priority? '99-'02? Hadn't they already started with the branching then? (e.g., MSN?)

        • by AusIV (950840)

          What is this magical, mystical time period you're talking about where making a solid OS was a successful MS priority?

          I knew somebody was going to point that out. I don't really think Microsoft was ever as focused as they should have been on making a solid OS, even when that was their only goal. In more recent years, I've been wondering why on Earth MS is trying to compete in a certain field.

          MSN was the beginning of Microsoft over-expanding. Then trying to compete with Google in search has always struck

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by petermgreen (876956)
            but this is exactly the problem - rather than try and create a solid OS, they've looked for ways to lock customers into Windows.
            Afaict microsofts main profit centers are windows desktop and office. MS therefore ttries to crush anything that threatens those products. Maybe this is a bad strategy long term but the stock market only really cares about the short term.

            Looked at in this light IE (particularlly free IE) and MSN are reaction to netscape and googles threats to make the desktop OS irrelvent. The XBO
          • I think the point of the browser wars was to somehow make FrontPage and IIS the only valid options for creating and serving web pages.
        • MSN wasn't to compete with google, or yahoo, or any of the search engines. It was originally a pointless little frontend for dialup connectivity and eventually became a full-fledged browser to compete with AOL. The browser also combined with the Hotmail interface for e-mail when MS acquired that. Later versions it became an actual e-mail client using a microsoft-based protocol. The search engine feature was common for just about any browser-based Dialup ISP (like AOL). Notice how similar MSN Messenger is si
        • by Repton (60818)

          1985--1989 [wikipedia.org]?

          (oh, wait, you said "successful")

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Virgil Tibbs (999791)
        Windows is a solid OS.
        It's so bloated and uses so much memory it would sink like a stone...
  • Alright! (Score:5, Funny)

    by LordKaT (619540) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:04AM (#19867295) Homepage Journal
    Now I can listen to music that I didn't buy for the media player I didn't purchase on an MP3 player that I don't possess!

    Isn't technology awesome?
  • Look here. (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:08AM (#19867341)
  • by dalmiroy2k (768278) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:19AM (#19867441)
    We hardcore and tech savvy users usually crack, mod or unlock any device we got ours hand into (Ipods, cell phones, DVD Players, Apple TV, etc) but it doesn't solve Six pack Joe's DRM problems. He will get a Zune, won't bother or know how to crack it and play along MS and MAFIAA's rules.
    The same thing will happen with our parents and most people. The solution is buying products that are open and DRM free in the first place.
    • It might (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Does this mean I'll be able to play my Microsoft PlaysForSure tracks on my Microsoft Zune now?
    • Parent comment directly contradicts the groupthink that no one bought a Zune, and no one ever will. So, which is it? Is the Zune going to be bought, or is it going to tank?
      • by vertinox (846076)
        So, which is it? Is the Zune going to be bought, or is it going to tank?

        He's talking about the poor Joe Six Packs who got a Zune for Christmas because the iPod was sold out.
    • by Idaho (12907)

      it doesn't solve Six pack Joe's DRM problems. He will get a Zune, won't bother or know how to crack it


      Wait, what?

      Surely you meant he'd get an iPod. If he'd gotten a Zune, Joe Sixpack likely wouldn't even be able to succesfully install the software... [engadget.com], never mind get to the point of actually downloading any songs.
    • ...it doesn't solve Six pack Joe's DRM problems. He will get a Zune, won't bother or know how to crack it and play along MS and MAFIAA's rules.

      Six Pack Joe with a Zune doesn't care about DRM (if he did he wouldn't have purchased a Zune, now would he?). Six Pack Joe assumes that DRM is the way things are, and accepts it because his music player is not the center of his universe. Like it or not, this is the way the majority of the public feels.

    • by dc29A (636871) *

      We hardcore and tech savvy users usually crack, mod or unlock any device we got ours hand into (Ipods, cell phones, DVD Players, Apple TV, etc) but it doesn't solve Six pack Joe's DRM problems. He will get a Zune, won't bother or know how to crack it and play along MS and MAFIAA's rules.
      The same thing will happen with our parents and most people. The solution is buying products that are open and DRM free in the first place.

      I don't think it happens to our parents and friends. My friends and family know I am tech savvy. They always ask me for advice about buying different things, using software and whatnot. The result is almost 100% Firefox usage, my mother and sister are on Ubuntu, they use Google docs with Open Office, my friends avoid DRM ridden hardware or software. I did show my sister how to rip CDs in mp3, how to burn CDs, even how to download stuff she wants. She is happy with some random hardware mp3 player without an

    • by BFaucet (635036)
      Ever heard of the GP2X? Runs on linux, designed to be easily developed for, plays MP3, OGG, WMA as well as several video formats. Has TV-out, USB and runs several emulators as well as homebrew and commercial games.

      http://www.gp2x.co.uk/ [gp2x.co.uk]

      I'm thinking about getting one.
  • by Infonaut (96956) <infonaut@gmail.com> on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:22AM (#19867493) Homepage Journal

    For years now we've been hearing that Mac OS X is less vulnerable to viruses and cracking because it has a far smaller marketshare than Windows. The argument is that nobody bothers with OS X because of the smaller marketshare. Although Zune DRM is being cracked for a different purpose, it does make me wonder if marketshare is much of a factor in decisions regarding which systems crackers attempt to defeat.

    • I actually believe that Zune was an opportunity for someone to get attention. Since no one cared to crack it(looking at you DVD jon), it gave someone else the opportunity to show off. Regardless, it is good because when m$ discontinues the Zune, the people who bought music will still be able to play it.
    • by MBCook (132727) <foobarsoft@foobarsoft.com> on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:36AM (#19867639) Homepage

      I don't think so. That may have been the case when 10.0 or 10.1 came out, but at this point Macs are more common. Combined with the perception of security (and the Apple ads touting such), the Mac is a very nice target. If someone was able to make a good Mac virus that didn't require security authentication or other such things, they could get a lot of press (and probably a very easy shot at a good position in computer security). I'm sure there are plenty of people trying.

      The Zune took so long because most people don't care. The average consumer doesn't care (or doesn't know that they should), and they bought an iPod anyway. The average techie (who does care) either bought an iPod, or probably doesn't buy DRMed music. Doing this is an interesting challenge, but it doesn't have the motivation behind it of cracking the DRM on the largest selling player and music store.

      The market share thing for OS X is a myth. It's not perfect, but it is more secure by design than XP (Vista was supposed to improve that, I don't know how good a job it really did, I haven't looked). The Zune just wasn't a very temping target, so this took a while.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by RzUpAnmsCwrds (262647)

        If someone was able to make a good Mac virus

        Viruses are no longer common. People who exploit systems today do it for profit. The days of some kid sitting in his room and cracking Windows are over. That kid is either cracking DRM (and there are oh so many targets, from the iPhone to the TiVo) or getting paid to run spam zombies.

        My Linux box encountered some 100,000 dictionary-based SSH attacks per day before I disabled password authentication. Run a packet sniffer on a public network some time. You may be su

    • by SEMW (967629)
      No. The cracking of the Zune was done because people wanted to get fair use out of their own music players / don't like arbitary DRM. It will have been done by people who own Zunes; if you have a Zune, you won't be focussing your attention on iPods just because they have a much larger market share -- you want fair use out of the player you own.

      Things like viruses / malware, on the other hand, are (sadly) these days done for almost entirely commercial reasons: zombifying machines to act as spam relays se
    • DRM cracking is a very different thing than cracking servers, viruses, trojans, etc. DRM is inherently flawed because you have to provide the keys to the encryption so that the end user can read the data. Even if the NSA developed a DRM system it'd be fairly easy to crack since they'd have to give you the keys as well.

      Windows is so damned insecure and targeted by viruses, trojans, etc. because of it's poor design. The argument that Windows is attacked the most because of market share is absurd. Windows
    • by RonnyJ (651856)
      It could also be that the Zune DRM was chosen because of Microsoft's enormous marketshare in the computer industry, not the portable audio market. Regardless of the individual product concerned, some people are going to be more motivated to crack something if it's made by Microsoft.
    • by Lumpy (12016)
      for years you have been listening to FUD.

      OSX, linux,solaris and other unixes don't have as many viruses and problems because of HOW THEY ARE DESIGNED. it's not easy for a rogue program to elevate it's privileges to superuser like windows does. Nor does any other OS encourage the user to run as administrator all the time like windows does.

      Windows and DOS has ZERO security to it compared to everything else. If in a unix box I run an app that wants to install files in the system area, I have to give it admi
    • For years now we've been hearing that Mac OS X is less vulnerable to viruses and cracking because it has a far smaller marketshare than Windows.

      No.

      OS X is less vulnerable because its components expose a much smaller surface area to attack.

      OS X is attacked less often because it has a smaller marketshare.

      These are both in OSX favor, but it's the first that is the really important one. Yes, black hats preferentially target the more popular platform. But they don't *exclusively* target it... if that were the ma
  • by Zune-Online.com (1081233) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:26AM (#19867531) Homepage Journal
    Here are the links to the FairUse4WM :

    FileSend [filesend.net]
    zUpload [zupload.com]
    Files-Upload [files-upload.com]
    zShare [zshare.net]
    QuickSharing [quicksharing.com]
    SendSpace [sendspace.com]
    ShareBee [sharebee.com]

    MD5 hash 0d5eaa7f8010e1293221a320943adb7e
    Via:
    http://forum.doom9.org/showthread.php?t=127943 [doom9.org]
  • by Statecraftsman (718862) * on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:30AM (#19867567) Homepage
    No, cracking your own DRM won't allow you to reach your Zune sales goals either.
  • oh no! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by friedman101 (618627) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @11:35AM (#19867621)
    DRM exists entirely for the protection of the RIAA, not Microsoft. This will only increase the popularity of the Zune. An mp3 player that can share files over wifi with no restrictions, sign me up. I can't see Microsoft being too proactive about locking down the DRM again.
    • by SEMW (967629)

      DRM exists entirely for the protection of the RIAA, not Microsoft. This will only increase the popularity of the Zune. An mp3 player that can share files over wifi with no restrictions, sign me up. I can't see Microsoft being too proactive about locking down the DRM again.

      Oh, certainly -- until a pair of RIAA exectives sidle up to Steve Ballmer in a few weeks time, asking how he'd feel about all tracks under the Universal and Sony labels being immediately and unilaterally withdrawn from the Zune marketplace. Upon which, sadly, MS will inevitably jump back into line ahead of the tip of the RIAA's whip, and back to full antipiracy proactive mode before you can say "DevelopersDevelopersDevelopers!"...

  • As much as i hate Itunes, its actually a nice program (just programmed like complete shit on the PC) But anyways... the Windows Media Player is HORRIBLE. It mangled all of my music and i had to do all my tags. I do like WMP's ability to show the controls on task bar though. Other than that.. i'm not a fan of WMP right now. Eww yuck..

    Oh yeah DRM cracked? Who didnt see that coming? DRM is dead. Its a stupid idea to rally your share holders around. The real truth is, the people have spoken and we dont want DRM
  • by NitroWolf (72977) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @12:29PM (#19868091)
    Has anyone emailed the 4 people who own Zunes yet and let them know?

    I think two of them were non-techies, so they may not know.

  • yay (Score:5, Funny)

    by artifex2004 (766107) on Sunday July 15, 2007 @03:39PM (#19869783) Journal
    I'll bet Zune owners are celebrating with a circle-squirt.

  • If Zune DRM strips for free, imagine what it would do for a dollar.

    Zune, zune, zune!
  • This is exactly the good news that could make the Zune take off. I wouldn't be surprised if the Zune division leaked the cracks into the marketplace itself to try to make the player more popular.

    --
    Toro
  • by aapold (753705) on Monday July 16, 2007 @07:55AM (#19874833) Homepage Journal
    Given the zunepass subscription model, someone could effectively grab a ridiculous amount of free music for any player (including ipods). Heck, you can even download the zuneplayer without owning a zune, but don't think it will let you subscribe without one. And then cancel the zunepass subscription when they are done. Given sheer logistics, its probably impossible to grab the entire marketplace, but you probably could grab just about everything you wanted, at least until they patch this and i'm sure they have people working overtime on this. Because the danger is that the RIAA would pull their stuff out of the marketplace if they don't feel confident microsoft can protect their content, they're already overly nervous about something like a subscription and wifi sharing, to the point where they'd crippled much of the device's potential.

    I use a zune, mainly for the subscription model, the player is nice for some things but there are times I'd rather use my sony ericsson phone because its a lot smaller, heck, i use it sometimes although that's limited to my none-zune marketplace content... My zune is more used in my car and at my desk. But I take it with me elsewhere at times because of the greatly expanded content I have access to on it. at least till now, where this would allow me to listen to it on that device. I'd happily keep paying my subscription fee if I had a means to listen to it on the device of my choice. You know, like that playsforsure concept...

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