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Acorn Arcade forums: News and features: A Cost Analysis of Windows Vista Content Protection
 

A Cost Analysis of Windows Vista Content Protection

Posted by Jeffrey Lee on 10:39, 31/1/2007 | , , ,
 
Vista is great, isn't it?
 
http://www.cs.auckland.ac.nz/~pgut001/pubs/vista_cost.html
 
(Insert disclaimer here about how we're not going to become one of those sites that just links to other places etc. etc.)
 
  A Cost Analysis of Windows Vista Content Protection
  pvigay (15:30 31/1/2007)
  Phlamethrower (15:37 31/1/2007)
    SimonC (16:54 31/1/2007)
      Loris (19:14 31/1/2007)
        monkeyson2 (11:23 1/2/2007)
          Phlamethrower (12:02 1/2/2007)
            filecore (13:17 1/2/2007)
              Phlamethrower (13:23 1/2/2007)
                SimonC (14:53 1/2/2007)
                  Phlamethrower (15:03 1/2/2007)
                filecore (15:01 1/2/2007)
                  Phlamethrower (15:09 1/2/2007)
                    filecore (15:13 1/2/2007)
              adrianl (22:34 2/2/2007)
                filecore (13:59 3/2/2007)
          guestx (11:36 2/2/2007)
            SimonC (10:00 5/2/2007)
              monkeyson2 (10:26 5/2/2007)
                guestx (20:04 5/2/2007)
                  filecore (12:53 6/2/2007)
                    guestx (14:32 6/2/2007)
                      SimonC (12:13 7/2/2007)
                        Phlamethrower (17:30 14/2/2007)
                          SimonC (09:50 15/2/2007)
                            Phlamethrower (14:03 15/2/2007)
 
Paul Vigay Message #97897, posted by pvigay at 15:30, 31/1/2007

Posts: 200
Pagh! That's old news. I posted it on my site (www.vigay.com/windows/vista_cost.html) back on the 8th January. In fact, it was me that converted it into HTML for him, from his original text only version. :)
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jeffrey Lee Message #97898, posted by Phlamethrower at 15:37, 31/1/2007, in reply to message #97897
PhlamethrowerHot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot stuff

Posts: 15057
And you didn't think to tell us about it at the time?

Think of all the extra publicity we could have given your website!

Honestly, you call yourself a blogger? ;)
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Simon Challands Message #97907, posted by SimonC at 16:54, 31/1/2007, in reply to message #97898
Elite
Right on, Commander!

Posts: 398
Interesting reading all the same, and stuff that isn't going to bother in the slightest everyone who'll go out and buy Vista regardless of anything, especially when it ends up on almost every new computer whether you want it to or not.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Tony Haines Message #97917, posted by Loris at 19:14, 31/1/2007, in reply to message #97907
madbanHa ha, me mine, mwahahahaha
Posts: 1025
Interesting reading all the same, and stuff that isn't going to bother in the slightest everyone who'll go out and buy Vista regardless of anything, especially when it ends up on almost every new computer whether you want it to or not.
But then we can laugh at them for not being able to view stuff properly.

...Ok, so we won't be able to see it either, but they'll have paid for it.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Phil Mellor Message #97931, posted by monkeyson2 at 11:23, 1/2/2007, in reply to message #97917
monkeyson2Please don't let them make me be a monkey butler

Posts: 12380
The BBC has picked up on this now:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/6319845.stm
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jeffrey Lee Message #97933, posted by Phlamethrower at 12:02, 1/2/2007, in reply to message #97931
PhlamethrowerHot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot stuff

Posts: 15057
I'm sat here trying to fathom why HD content protection has to be so ludicrously complex.

Surely instead of crippling the OS to allow the CPU/GPU to do the decoding, they could have instead insisted that everything goes through a dedicated hardware decoder? The kind of hardware decoder that will become dirt cheap, because it will be built into every standalone HD-DVD/bluray player? The kind of hardware decoder that could easily be integrated into modern graphics cards, since they're already capable of decoding most/all of a HD stream?

All it needs is support from the graphics card for 'private' video overlays (Which would be inaccessible to anything else except the HD decoder), similar support from the audio card to protect the audio stream, and possibly a method of reading data directly from the HD-DVD/bluray disc instead of asking the OS to fetch it and then reading it from memory.

If they're so worried about naughty software stealing the decoded data, just don't use any software! It's that simple!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Togneri Message #97944, posted by filecore at 13:17, 1/2/2007, in reply to message #97933

Posts: 3867
If they're so worried about naughty software stealing the decoded data, just don't use any software! It's that simple!
Do you remember (RISC OS and PC) dongles? "Somebody will steal our software! Oh noes!" followed by "Let's make a hardware dongle that goes on the parallel port!" followed by "Somebody hacked a module that emulates our hardware dongle!"

This happened with Impression, among others. Ovation Pro? I have a number of old RISC OS dongles lying around somewhere, gathering dust. The same has happened since and will happen again. You stick a hardware decoder on a piece of hardware, somebody, somewhere, before too long, will crack/decode/emulate it, or else figure out which to pins/jumpers to short (unlocking the multipliers by shorting the pins on certain models of Athlon XPs, anyone?).
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jeffrey Lee Message #97946, posted by Phlamethrower at 13:23, 1/2/2007, in reply to message #97944
PhlamethrowerHot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot stuff

Posts: 15057
You stick a hardware decoder on a piece of hardware, somebody, somewhere, before too long, will crack/decode/emulate it, or else figure out which to pins/jumpers to short (unlocking the multipliers by shorting the pins on certain models of Athlon XPs, anyone?).
Yes - everything can be cracked. But ultimately hardware is more secure than software, and a hardware decoder in a PC will provide the same level of protection as the hardware decoder in a standalone player. Crippling your OS so you can decode using a less secure method (software) is a stupid move to make.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Simon Challands Message #97949, posted by SimonC at 14:53, 1/2/2007, in reply to message #97946
Elite
Right on, Commander!

Posts: 398
Yes - everything can be cracked. But ultimately hardware is more secure than software
So it's all ultimately pointless anyway. Either "solution" might prevent kids from giving copies to a few of their friends, or the odd copy going around the office, but some systems screw up the legitimate (i.e. most of what the article is on about), they all encourage locking in to a proprietary system, thus helping to drive out any alternatives if you've already got a large share (i.e. typical MS behaviour), and none of them stop large-scale criminal counterfeiters, who must be loving the opportunities that'll be presented to them by Vista.

So, the large scale copying can't be stopped, and most of the small scale stuff could be by something far simpler and less intrusive. What's the point?
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Togneri Message #97950, posted by filecore at 15:01, 1/2/2007, in reply to message #97946

Posts: 3867
a hardware decoder in a PC will provide the same level of protection as the hardware decoder in a standalone player.
And we all remember how successful DVD region encoding was, don't we? ;-)

Crippling your OS so you can decode using a less secure method (software) is a stupid move to make.
Indeed. 'nuff said.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jeffrey Lee Message #97952, posted by Phlamethrower at 15:03, 1/2/2007, in reply to message #97949
PhlamethrowerHot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot stuff

Posts: 15057
What's the point?
Precisely.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jeffrey Lee Message #97953, posted by Phlamethrower at 15:09, 1/2/2007, in reply to message #97950
PhlamethrowerHot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot stuff

Posts: 15057
And we all remember how successful DVD region encoding was, don't we? ;-)
DVD region encoding is complete insanity, considering that you can buy multi-region players. And even if multi-region players didn't exist, you'd still be able to buy an extra drive for your PC for around the same cost as a movie.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Togneri Message #97955, posted by filecore at 15:13, 1/2/2007, in reply to message #97953

Posts: 3867
For all you Vista-watchers out there, this is quite a fun analysis: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/02/01/vista_waiting_game/
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
GuestX Message #97989, posted by guestx at 11:36, 2/2/2007, in reply to message #97931
Member
Posts: 102
The BBC has picked up on this now:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/6319845.stm
From the people who want to share the fruits of the licence fee only with Microsoft DRM strapped on:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbctrust/news/press-releases/31-01-2007.html

What are the odds that (1) they never make it available in anything other than Windows Media format, and (2) they refuse to see the fraud in DRMing stuff that licence fee payers have actually commissioned and paid for?
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Adrian Lees Message #98036, posted by adrianl at 22:34, 2/2/2007, in reply to message #97944
Member
Posts: 1565
This happened with Impression, among others. Ovation Pro?
Did anybody hack the protection system used on Ovation Pro?
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Togneri Message #98059, posted by filecore at 13:59, 3/2/2007, in reply to message #98036

Posts: 3867
This happened with Impression, among others. Ovation Pro?
Did anybody hack the protection system used on Ovation Pro?
I don't know. I just put it there because I think I had a memory of an Ovation Pro dongle. I could be mistaken.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Simon Challands Message #98114, posted by SimonC at 10:00, 5/2/2007, in reply to message #97989
Elite
Right on, Commander!

Posts: 398
What are the odds that (1) they never make it available in anything other than Windows Media format, and (2) they refuse to see the fraud in DRMing stuff that licence fee payers have actually commissioned and paid for?
Their defence will (fairly simply) be that it's to prevent others who haven't paid the licence fee from getting it, although quite what the point of it in anything downloadable without paying directly for is is beyond me.

There is a paragraph in there suggesting that it shouldn't be an MS-only system.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Phil Mellor Message #98115, posted by monkeyson2 at 10:26, 5/2/2007, in reply to message #98114
monkeyson2Please don't let them make me be a monkey butler

Posts: 12380
There is a paragraph in there suggesting that it shouldn't be an MS-only system.
It's highly likely that it will be MS-only, unless they receive feedback from their public consultation suggesting otherwise.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
GuestX Message #98152, posted by guestx at 20:04, 5/2/2007, in reply to message #98115
Member
Posts: 102
There is a paragraph in there suggesting that it shouldn't be an MS-only system.
It's highly likely that it will be MS-only, unless they receive feedback from their public consultation suggesting otherwise.
Yes, the BBC Executive want to mandate Windows XP plus Microsoft DRM Player, although I'm slightly surprised that they didn't insist on Vista given recent reports on their "impartiality" with respect to the Vista launch. Apparently, the BBC Trust want cross-platform things within "a reasonable timeframe", although that could mean Real's Spyware Player for all we know. And they all love their DRM.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Togneri Message #98171, posted by filecore at 12:53, 6/2/2007, in reply to message #98152

Posts: 3867
http://www.tgdaily.com/2007/02/02/windows_vista_reader_feedback/index.html
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
GuestX Message #98180, posted by guestx at 14:32, 6/2/2007, in reply to message #98171
Member
Posts: 102
http://www.tgdaily.com/2007/02/02/windows_vista_reader_feedback/index.html
Even though everyone flamed Linux for being hard to install, Windows never provided a nice installation experience (and even old Red Hat distributions surpassed their contemporary Windows counterparts). That people are shocked by the bloat and awkwardness should be old news to everyone else.

But end-user installations and upgrades isn't what the whole Vista thing is about (nor was it the Windows way). Soon enough, anyone buying a PC will be given it pre-installed whether they like it or not - that's how these things get "adoption", or rather it's how people are coerced into using it.

The only end-users installing Windows are fanboys or people unfortunate enough to be restoring broken systems without having the freedom to choose something better.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Simon Challands Message #98224, posted by SimonC at 12:13, 7/2/2007, in reply to message #98180
Elite
Right on, Commander!

Posts: 398
But end-user installations and upgrades isn't what the whole Vista thing is about (nor was it the Windows way). Soon enough, anyone buying a PC will be given it pre-installed whether they like it or not - that's how these things get "adoption", or rather it's how people are coerced into using it.
Which is why, sadly, Vista will be successful for Microsoft.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jeffrey Lee Message #98596, posted by Phlamethrower at 17:30, 14/2/2007, in reply to message #98224
PhlamethrowerHot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot stuff

Posts: 15057
http://flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=151250154&size=o

Ugh!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Simon Challands Message #98624, posted by SimonC at 09:50, 15/2/2007, in reply to message #98596
Elite
Right on, Commander!

Posts: 398
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/6362069.stm

Looks like a few people in the business might have a hint of a brain in their head, but alas there's no sign of them acting on it.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jeffrey Lee Message #98637, posted by Phlamethrower at 14:03, 15/2/2007, in reply to message #98624
PhlamethrowerHot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot stuff

Posts: 15057
I hereby nominate this as the official TIB Vista Bashing Thread.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KyLqUf4cdwc
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 

Acorn Arcade forums: News and features: A Cost Analysis of Windows Vista Content Protection