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Security hole found in early HD-DVD software

Ken Weeks

We all know that HD-DVD and Blu-Ray movies will be chock-full of anti-piracy measures, but it looks like one glaring hole didn't get plugged:

Computer magazine c't has discovered that the first software players running on Windows XP allow screenshots of the movies to be created in full resolution. To do so, you only need to press the Print key on your keyboard while the movie is running. Such a screenshot function could then be automated to produce copies of HD movies both from Blu-ray Discs and from HD DVDs picture by picture. As c't calculated, the performance of current PC systems is sufficient for a clean recording using this procedure. Once a pirate has all of the individual pictures, they can be put together to create a complete movie and mixed with the audio track that is grabbed separately.

This copy protection hole affects both Sony's first Blu-ray PC Vaio VGC-RC 204 and Toshiba's first HD DVD notebook Qosmio G30. Both of them use special OEM versions of Intervideo's WinDVD player software.

 It's amusing that the powers-that-be would miss something so obvious as the good ol' print key. You'd probably be more interested in this news if your console was mortally tied to the success of a certain format.

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