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New utility strips DRM from iTunes Music Store tracks

updated 07:15 pm EDT, Sun April 4, 2004

playfair strips iTMS DRM

is a tool for Mac OS X that strips the digital rights management protection from tracks purchased at the iTunes Music Store, converting them to ordinary AAC audio files without any loss in quality. The utility is believed to be the first to circumvent Apple's DRM without employing quality-sapping lossy compression formats to do so. The current version, 0.2, requires Xcode to be installed and must be built and run from the Terminal. An iPod or Mac authorized to read the purchased track is also needed.

by MacNN Staff





  1. Putta

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Looks like the s*&t is about to hit the fan.

    I will use it, but only to put songs on my phone (and yes, I have already bought two iPods).

    Still this can only be bad press for Apple and its stock

  1. hzink

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I would really appreciate it if this kind of resourcefulness and effort were spent to defeat the DRM of WMA files. As it stands, this kind of 'innovation' (while certainly interesting), will only result in two things:

    - Ammo for all the press trying to shovel dirt on Apple's success.
    - Ammo for music publishers to voice concern over licensing music to Apple.
    - Ammo for Microsquat to claim how unsecure Apple's DRM is.

    Only solution is for Apple to have anticipated this, and to release a stronger version of their DRM within days of this news hitting the press. This will start to show up on tech sites tomorrow, and will have hit the mainsream press by week's end.

  1. jokell82

    Joined: Dec 1969



    You have to have an *authorized* copy to convert it. So if it's not your music you can't convert it...

  1. jpellino

    Joined: Dec 1969


    here we go...

    tag line at the end of the project page: "INFORMATION WANTS TO BE FREE."

    nonsense. it's a cute battle cry, but you don't really know what it means and you don't really believe it.

    there are laws granting copyright that you need to either obey or change - this is digital hijacking, pure and simple.

    some kid needs to prove something, or decided to thumb their nose at apple, or who knows why they're taking this rabble rousing stand.

    they've got some stones, though - skated completely over the you-need-to-know-how-to-defeat-security-to-make-it-better pond, I can see someone finding a vulnerability and posting it so apple can have their promised model intact, but they don't even try and suggest that.

    anything like this has to have a significant competing function/need beyond the wholesale defeat of a copy protectionscheme, or else they won't have a leg to stand on...

    tey know exactly what they're doing in this regard, or else they wouldn't require a build thru xcode - they'd just deliver a working app - but that would open them up to more direct blame when people use this for the only legit use - breaking the financial model for apple - so they cover their behinds.

    do something truly useful and we'll applaud you.
    this simply makes you the eddie haskell of the apple dev scene.

  1. jpellino

    Joined: Dec 1969


    good point,

    "You have to have an *authorized* copy to convert it. So if it's not your music you can't convert it..."

    true, but once you've converted it, you can do anything you want - which is now by definition unauthorized use, and apple will (rightly so) release the hounds.

    these guys are simply squirrels on the bird feeders of technology.

  1. MDiddy

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Here's an example

    I've bought some songs from the iTMS, and I'd like to play them at work when I connect my iPod and charge it form my work computer. This would let me accomplish it wihtout having to remeber to deauthorize one of my three machines at home, and/or my work computer and alos saves me the hassle of having to burn them to CD, then re-import them with a slight loss in quality.

    Please stop complaing about this guy being a pirate, or hacker loser-hes going to save me some time and hassle. I'm all for it. Hooray

  1. Truepop

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Where did it go?

    I checked out their sourceforge page and every mirror comes up with a 404. either the files haven't been put up or they have been taking down.

  1. ThisGuy

    Joined: Dec 1969


    WTF is $ make ?

    Installing playfair is pretty easy. If you're reading this, you've
    already done step 1, which is to unpack the distribution tarball.
    After that, it's a simple matter of:

    $ ./configure
    $ make
    $ make install

  1. jpellino

    Joined: Dec 1969



    you have three machines at home, hopefully on the same network;
    you can use itunes sharing on the (up to five) machines at home
    instead of synching - no authorization required
    and authorize the work machine.
    no loss of quality or drm.

  1. Oneota

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: WTF is $ make?

    If you don't know the answer to that, then don't bother with this product - you gotta have a little software development background under your belt to make use of it.

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