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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38 Comments

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so pretty much you can hookup ur pc to an HDTV and voila? you got HD movies? neat... what's the resolution on these movies anyway? 1080p? or 720p?

All we need now is for someone to create some sort of super compression like DivX/XvidD did for DVD's. If you got the same kind of compression rates, that turn a 9Gb DVD into 700Mb then well...I think you get where I'm going with this =D

Kev1n said,
A 700MB DivX movie does NOT equal a full DVD quality.

True.. but just think of the quality of a HD-DVD Movie thats 19.6 GB in size and put that into a Compresed format just think of the quality that it would make.. useing Divx from this would for sure make the video SD-DVD quality.

Do you not understand the quality of these movies? The best compression methods available in 20GB - 25GB sizes. You can't get any better:

Screenshot

It's like watching a moving photo - especially on a 10ft HD projector screen

HD-DVD allready use an MP4 based compression, unlike DVD compressed in MPEG2 that doesn't provide very good compression, the VC- somethign codec used by HD-DVD pretty much allready uses the best compression at full qiality compression you can get.

The best option would be to use the same HD-DVD comrpession but with lower compression settings, At this point in time we're hard pressed to find new comrpession formats that manage to compress movies more while still retaining quality.

Well.. HD-DVD's are compressed 1080p material. If you are satisfied with 720p you could downscale it and reencode it in 720p to save a lot of space. I'd guess you could shave it down to a few gigs that way.

That's pretty similar to what XviD rips do now except you won't be moving to a better codec.

screw downloading 19GB of data ... HD-DVD just aint worth getting right now especially download wise... me personally i dont see XviD going out anytime soon as it provides good quality at a great file size ;)

i only have a 384k DSL connection (40KB/s) right now anyways for 15 dollars per month... even though it aint super fast it's still real good for the price im paying

Future titles could potentially require, as soon as a disc is inserted, that the user upgrade their software in order to play discs.

Good way to discourage me from purchasing products. Consitantly making them annoying.

I've always thought that downloading mpeg4 compressed rips of DVD's to be pretty stupid. Just rent the movie or join Netflix or something. I don't really care for owning movies...i typically only want to watch something once anyway so renting is way more convenient for me then buying or stealing.

"But really it is just stupid to download a 20gb movie...."

That depends on your connection and network... You talk of it like some would spend several days downloading this, when that's quite far from the truth.

It wouldn't take me long to download 19GB with a 10mbit connection... uploading it on the other hand... :D

Batman Begins has also been released: 24.76GB

:D

Or it may swing studios to support only Blu-Ray. Blu-Ray's encryption needs to be cracked now so that the things are even. But Blu-Ray's encryption is tighter then HD-DVD according to what I've read.

In the end, the only thing that will boost sells of either format will be how many movies are exclusive to either format that people want to watch (and/or own). If Blu-Ray's encryption is not shown to be crackable soon then it may end up with more exclusive titles :S and win. Even if it is cracked a year from now, it will be too late to make the difference.

It's all down to the consumer, if they know that HD-DVD is copyable and Blu-ray isn't then it may just swing in HD-DVDs favour.

I don't support pirating of movies, but I do support backing them up (re-encoding them for my iPod ). If they'd come up with a good way of just allowing every piece of music and video to be used on anything, it'd make a lot more people happy. Everyone should know by now that no matter what sort of encryption you place on something, someone's going to break it. Going after those who actually distribute the content (and first make it available) is really the only thing that can be done to stop it, and I'd support it (just like I support putting any other shoplifter in jail). When I pay $14 for a movie, I want to be able to watch it on anything I own. I don't want to make copies to give away, I want to make copies for myself and only myself. I don't want to buy them again on iTunes when I already have them on DVD. That's a waste of money.

I agree, I do the same for converting DVD's to PSP.

besides, having a pirate copy ain't that great neither, still cost a ton to burn a copy, also what a waste of HDD space.

This where I see a problem with Bit Torrent, for downloading huge files in 10GB range is nuts and can take forever.

It doesn't take that long... Perhaps 15 hours or so on my connection, and if I would be to schedule that in a clever way (not using the computer anyway, sleeping, being at work, ...) that's not really a tough matter.

i count 4 that have come out so far... there may be more though... serenity looks like its the smallest though... the biggest is chronicles of riddick at 24.9GB. thats not gonna be fun to download :P

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.

Read the text man!

theres a few on torrent sites now.

some of those with extras on them wont play properly at the moment (1/3 ish).

most of the others are 25gb.

People have been downloading DVD9's for a while now. it's just slightly more than twice that of a DVD 9.


and I have a 24/24Mb Fiber broadband, and in Scandinavia, 24Mb downstream on ADSL isn't that rare and expensive. I foresee the lack of discs and writers to be a bigger problem.

Still, I'd rather buy a HD-DVD movie since for the effort it'd be a movie I wanted anyway, even though I'd be able to fully enjoy 720p HD-DVD.. well, I could if I had a HD-DVD addon for my 360.

Who needs DVD burners when you can mount the image in Daemon Tools? All you need is a really big plasma screen with a DVI port and you're all set.

Yeah, size is not really a problem here... On a 10 Mbps connection, all you need to do is to leave it over a night and the work day after, and you may either have finished it, or quite little time left on it.

I know a pirated package of the entire series of Bond has been popular for a very long time, and it's of comparable size to this, if not larger, so there you have your real-world "evidence" too, as well as the fact that this movie is currently spread too.