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Old 03-02-2006, 01:28 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by oneandoneis2
Quite right. However, LQ's rules clearly state:

So regardless of where the original poster is, a response of "Do this to bypass the DRM" is not admissible on this forum. Even if it *is* legal for the OP to use it in his country.
I'm fairly fluent in the LQ rules, and I'd interpret this thread to fall within those guidelines. We aren't cracking anything, nor is the OP asking for such assistance. Feel free to not engage in a discussion about playing music files on Linux, but we don't need someone preaching Laws that don't apply to another linux member.

Old 03-02-2006, 12:17 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by oneandoneis2
Quite right. However, LQ's rules clearly state:

So regardless of where the original poster is, a response of "Do this to bypass the DRM" is not admissible on this forum. Even if it *is* legal for the OP to use it in his country.

By that standard we should remove every reference to playing DVDs and MP3s in Linux in every thread where it has come up.

Stupid laws are made to be ignored and overturned.
Old 03-02-2006, 12:54 PM   #18
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Well, after listening to what everyone had to say. I propose we start a project that would allow people to legally listen to music purchased from iTunes or Napster on Linux. After all, we have IM messengers that can talk to MSN or Yahoo. We have a project that can execute .Net code on Linux and Wine allows us to run windows based stuff on Linux!

In light of all these wonderful things, why can't we enable linux to play DRM protected music. I'd be willing to participate in such a project. It sounds very useful!

Moderators: My intention to start this thread was always to play DRM stuff Legally on Linux, cracking was never my intention or a possible solution to my problem
Old 03-02-2006, 01:58 PM   #19
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And what about supporting blue ribbon (free speech) campaign? Talking about cracking is not the same as cracking as talking about crimes in not the same as making them. Or not?
Is there any law in any country which prohibits talking if it does not propagate terrorism, fascism or racism?

For danishmr, use google. The net is vast and infinite...

Last edited by Alien_Hominid; 03-02-2006 at 01:59 PM.
Old 03-02-2006, 03:11 PM   #20
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The whole idea behind DRM music files is kind of silly.
If you are able to play the song, then you must be able to hear it.
If you are able to hear it, then you are able to record it and save it in whatever format you choose.

So buy your DRM wma files to ease your conscience, then convert it to a sane non-proprietary format.
Old 03-02-2006, 03:42 PM   #21
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This seems a little silly to me. All the programs in Windows that can play these songs with licences access the internet to obtain the licence don't they? Why can't something in linux access the same licenses? Is there some legal implication?

The more I use the whole "Music Download" idea the more i am disapointed in the way it has been setup. We are trusted enough to purchase a CD from a shop and not distibute it illegally (as easy as it is) so why aren't we trusted with music downloads?
Old 03-02-2006, 03:55 PM   #22
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We aren't trusted enough, that's why copy-protected CDs are being pushed more & more.
Old 03-02-2006, 05:48 PM   #23
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licenses to DRM and WMA, etc.

First off: if you google Restricted Formats you might find some helpful results. Ubuntu hosts a wonderful wiki page that may also be useful for users of other distros.

I'd like to resolve some confusion here about licensing issues... hopefully I'm not too confused about them myself!

There are at least two different types of licenses at play here...

One type of license is that which allows your windows programs to play a legally-downloaded DRM-protected song. This is a license that you purchased along with the download so that you could play the song on your computer. It would seem that that license should be transferrable to linux, right? Well, the story doesn't end there.

Another type of license governs the playing of ".wma" files in general, whether they are DRM-protected or not.

WMA stands for "Windows Media Audio" -- it is a file format that was created by Microsoft (or purchased by them, or stolen by them...)


Microsoft has secured some rights to the WMA format. Thus, in order to use ANY program that plays WMA files, you (or the software distributor) must purchase a licence from microsoft. That's just for the right to play ANY wma file, even those that are not DRM-protected.

(Of course, if you're in a country where Microsoft hasn't secured rights to the WMA format, then assumably you won't have to pay a license fee. However, most of us live in such restrictive countries. Since is US-based, we can't post information here about circumventing licenses.)

One such implication of these laws: A buddy of mine has a car CD player that can play WMA files. The manufacturer of that car CD player must have paid microsoft a licensing fee in order to manufacture and market the CD player with the ability to play WMA files. Food for thought, eh?

It is unlikely that microsoft has sold or distributed any licenses to linux developers for WMA playback (or that they will in the future). Furthermore, payment of such licensing fees goes against the spirit of free software upon which much of the linux community stands.

Thus, for those of us in countries with restrictive laws, it becomes effectively illegal to play any WMA files using linux, regardless of DRM.

Interestingly enough, the mp3 format is also a "Restricted Format". The mp3 format was invented by a German company that owns certain rights to it. I'm not sure about the process of decoding (playing) but I'm pretty sure that encoding (creating) mp3s is restricted -- thus, the naming of the LAME project: "Lame Ain't an Mp3 Encoder".

So if you want to play DRM-protected WMA files (on linux), it's the WMA license that stands in the way first.

Then there's the DRM license, which may be more restrictive than you think. If you purchased a DRM-protected song from, say, napster, you may have "agreed" to some sort of contract before downloading the song and license. Among other things, that contract may restrict the re-encoding of the DRM-protected song in any format. This could make it effectively illegal to re-encode the song for your own personal playback on linux. You might want to study the contract you "agreed" to when you signed up with napster or downloaded the song.

How to get around this morass of legal restrictions? We would seem to be forced to either break SOME law, not use linux for music playback, or restrict our computer-music-listening to "free music" -- that is, music distributed free of licenses or royalties. The latter effectively rules out the music produced or distributed by most (if not all) major record labels.

That said... well, I'll repeat what I said in the beginning: a google search for Restricted Formats may enlighten you with some more useful information.

Old 03-03-2006, 01:36 PM   #24
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Whats the score here?
InterVideo, which markets software for DVD editing, distribution and burning on PCs and consumer electronic devices, said the main components of the Microsoft technology that will be ported to Linux include the Windows Media Audio and Video codecs, Windows Media file container, Windows Media streaming protocols, and DRM support.
This article is dated April 8, 2003. Surely something has happened since. There is also this one dated 28 Apr 2004,

Are the windows media codecs available for linux?
Old 03-04-2006, 10:12 AM   #25
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Just in case any of you poor folks with lots of junk (aka .wma files) want to take a crack at salvaging them, you might take a look at this tutorial I just ran across.

Convert WMA to MP3

I'd be surprised if it would work on DRM protected files, tho.
Old 08-22-2008, 07:19 PM   #26
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DRM is fine... it's just not fair.

Originally Posted by Emerson View Post
US law does not rule the world indeed. However, from ethical point of view. MS owns it. They invented it and they have the right to cash in for it as far as I am concerned. I'm just avoiding it as does rickh.
I don't think that MS should have such a monopoly. I'm in Grad School for Library science. I can download free audiobooks from netlibrary through my university library and check them out for 3 weeks. I can also download a new liscense to play them as much as I want at no charge. But they are DRM encrypted and can only play through Windows Media Player. I don't want to impinge on the Digital Rights... I'm more than happy to play by the rules. I just think that I should be able to do it on my Linux system without having to install Wine and WMP... which I have done, and can't make work. Does anyone have any suggestions?
Old 08-22-2009, 01:39 PM   #27
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Screw Micro[$hit]oft and screw DRM! I don't like posting bombastic vehement statements like this but the topic of discussion really does make my blood boil.

NOBODY has the right to enforce or restrict how and where an individual uses information that he/she has fairly purchased or obtained for personal use.

If I want to play wma files on my ipod or linux notebook; I should be able to. And if I want to circumvent the DRM for my personal usage; I should be able to.

If anyone thinks otherwise (including US federal law makers and prosecutors) you should be ashamed of yourself. This is literally a war about rights of the consumer and rights of the individual. We should all pull together to put this shameful episode to an end.

Old 08-22-2009, 09:42 PM   #28
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burn a music CD of the songs you want to listen to, then in linux just rip the CD to your HDD.... problem solved. yes MS is a royal PITA, but then again so is any pay to play solution.

FYI, doing so does not violate any DMCA as you legally own the rights to listen to the music and putting it on a CD is your legal right to fair use.
Old 01-15-2010, 07:54 AM   #29
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DRM is not an OS issue—it's an issue for the software on the OS. It's not the fault of Linux that it doesn't play DRM. It's the fault of the companies that don't make and license their software to use DRM on Linux. They could make Windows Media Player for Linux if they wanted to. They just don't want to yet.

Granted, DRM is evil, but I do think we should be able to use it if we want, especially for Netlibrary files.

Personally, I don't think legally circumventing DRM in a country that allows it is unethical and I hate it to be touted as such. In my view, using laws to prevent people from cracking DRM, causing all this controversy just because they don't want to show us any trust, is more unethical—perhaps even offensive.

How would you feel if you were sold a physical book and told that you were not sold the right to show it to anyone, and that you could only read it in certain countries? How would you feel if they tried to enforce that for 100% compliance? True, you agreed to it and its kind of your fault—but does that make it ethical for a company to work to popularize such a method? Not only does it limit your freedoms and cause social pressure, but it limits the power of the book's authors over that distribution.

Having said all that, I do not believe in breaking the law to circumvent DRM. I do believe in lobbying with companies to get them to make their software Linux-compatible, however.

Anyway, I'm just venting and spawning some thoughts. Enjoy.

Last edited by yonu; 01-15-2010 at 08:04 AM.
Old 01-15-2010, 08:27 AM   #30
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