Windows Media, Zune DRM encryption gets cracked

Someone going by the forum name Divine Tao has cracked Microsoft’s DRM blackbox components, opening up Windows Media Player and Zune restrictions.

A new update to a DRM stripping program reportedly gives users full access to subscription music tracks. For example, users paying around $10 a month to have unlimited streaming access to music files can have hard copies of all tracks without paying an extra cent.

The new update to the infamous Windows Media decryption program also taps into Zune territory. It strips all DRM protection from tracks purchased through the Zune Marketplace.

The Zune Marketplace also offers a subscription service, which can be manipulated with the software. Additionally, it affects songs that are sent to another Zune player.

Tracks that are wirelessly transferred to another Zune have automatic DRM restrictions that make the file unplayable after it is accessed three times. The new hacked software removes this barrier.

Full DRM protection is nearly impossible anymore, which has led to a move by online music outlets to begin a push to DRM-free content. For example, Apple’s iTunes store now has a wide selection of straight MP3 tracks, but it charges users an extra 30 cents over the copy-protected song price.

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