First Pirated HD DVD Movie Hits BitTorrent

Pirates decided that the copy protection scheme for HD DVD was worth a shot. The result? The movie is entitled Serenity and was made available as a .EVO file which is playable on most DVD playback software packages. The file was encoded in MPEG-4 VC-1 resulting in 19.6 GB worth of hard disk space. The first full-resolution rip of an HD DVD movie on BitTorrent. Who knows, maybe this is yet another factor in the HD war.

An announcement less than a month ago by an anonymous programmer known as Muslix64 specified that the copy protection on HD DVD had been bypassed. The open-source program to implement this was called BackupHDDVD. The software cleverly avoids (for how long?) legal justice by placing the responsibility of cracking on the user, not the software. To extract an unencrypted copy of the HD DVD source material the user has to fetch that disc's volume or title key.

CyberLink, the makers of PowerDVD playback software, have already assured everyone that their software is not responsible for extracting the title keys from the media. Content providers, on the other hand, have declared that they reserve the right to invalidate known pirated keys in the future. Of course, they will have to figure out which application gets the volume keys (Cyberlink has not yet been cleared). Future titles could potentially require, as soon as a disc is inserted, that the user upgrade their software in order to play discs.

News source: Ars Technica

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