HD-DVD copy protection defeated … for now

brand-hd-dvd.gifBoingBoing reader Gunther says,

On the doom9 forums there is news of a new tool to decrypt HDDVD’s. How you get the key is not yet clear but there is a promise to have a tool to get the needed key later. (check the #9 post in the thread): Link, and related coverage at the Inquirer UK.

Here is the instructional video posted by muslix64, the guy who claims credit. He says, “I was not aware of anyone having done that, so I did. Have a look. The AACS copy protection system is really Unbreakable! The program is a simple implementation of the aacs crypto protocol freely available on the net. No reverse engineering! Stay tuned for source code soon! Merry Christmas everyone!”

BoingBoing reader A.V. points out that the HD-DVD DRM crack is not a crack — but a hack that will stop working pretty soon:

Note that AACS has not been broken. All they did was copy the key from memory off WinDVD’s software. Yes, this will let you copy HD-DVD for now, until the manufacturers revoke the key in the next batch of HD-DVD pressings. WinDVD will either have to get a new key or might get their license canceled entirely, ending the product.

Of course if they get a new key, then it can be copied from memory again unless they start encrypting it in memory and then this program is useless.

So “backup” your HD-DVD’s while you can, in a few months this program will be useless on newer releases.

So for now you may be able to backup your HD-DVD collection, but only if you work fast, on the 150 or so titles that are already released, and only if the DVD Playback software you are using has the vulnerability.

Due to all the attention, this hole will likely be plugged within months if not sooner and any playback software containing the vulnerability will likely be blacklisted by the studios.

The only real upside to all of the attention that this quasi crack is receiving is an elevation of public consciousness about the DRM issue.

Hattip: BoingBoing

UPDATE: HD DVD Encryption Hacked, Xbox 360 Player Utilized