QTFairUse. Unfortunately, because this tool was still very raw and in Python, so it didn't seem entirely there yet for the rest of us; well, today we're one step closer with myTunes, a small (50KB), simple, graphical Windows app designed to strip the DRM off your iTunes tracks lickety split. Based on the QTFairUse Python code (and not that of the original myTunes from way back in the day), this app unfortunately only strips DRM in real time, meaning that while it automates the process as you churn through your playlist, it also requires you to play through your library song by song (compared to FairUse4WM, which strips PlaysForSure DRM en masse). Also, after the FairPlay has been stripped, you still have to use another tool to reconstruct your track from your raw AAC file (which also means you have no metadata). In other words, even though this tool simplifies a lot of the process, it's still also a huge pain to use, so you'd better be prepared to bust out some shell scripting until the next version of myTunes is released (when they intend to automatically add the headers and metadata, making it a one step process). But it did most definitely work, click on to get an idea of what you're in for with this early version of myTunes.
So the first thing we did was, of course, update to the very latest version of iTunes for Windows (188.8.131.52) and buy a song from the iTunes Music Store.
We love Ultravox, so we picked an appropriate song...
As you can see, we're prepared for major cash outlays for our editorial.
Once you have your track ready to play, fire up myTunes, set your decoding path, and enable myTunes.
Then, just hit play on your DRMed track, and it will begin the DRM stripping process.
Like we said, it goes in real time, so be patient. You'll probably want to leave this thing running overnight (hey, that's 8 hours of un-DRMed music a day, not too bad).
Once it's done decoding, you have to use another tool called faad.exe to construct a playable AAC ADTS file. Kinda sucks, but it only took 2.8 seconds for Hymn to get built back up. Then we moved all our files (the FairPlay DRMed file, the raw AAC file, and the reconstructed AAC file) to our other machine for testing.
As you'd expect, this is what happened with the AAC file tried to play in VLC. No go -- that's copy protection for ya!
Neither would the raw AAC file play, but that wasn't a surprise either. The resulting file from faad worked just fine, though.
Unfortunately it had no metadata (as expected).
However, as you can see the bitrate was kept intact, and the file size was almost identical to its original. We can't yet confirm that this was a lossless DRM stripping method, but we'd wager it is (or at least very close to it). For what it's worth, we heard absolutely no discernable loss in sound quality. Happy fair use everybody!