Microsoft is preparing a fix for a program that strips the digital-rights-management protections attached to its Windows Media file format, representatives said Monday night. Armed with the program, users could theoretically download an unlimited amount of music via MTV's Urge music service, as well as other sites that offer music for download.
The "FairUse4WM" program was released earlier this month, and advertised as a tool to remove the rights restrictions from files encoded with Windows Media Player 10 or 11. The program's creator, "viodentia," published the orignal file to a message board on August 19, and the file has been quickly mirrored around the Web. FairUse4WM was designed, according to viodentia, as a means to encourage fair use, such as unlocking purchased music. In its current state, however, the tool can be used to unlock music purchased through subscription services such MTV's Urge music service, which uses Microsoft's Windows Media Digital Rights Management software.