AfterDawn: Tech news

HD DVD copy protection circumvented?

Written by Jari Ketola @ 28 Dec 2006 1:03 User comments (51)

HD DVD copy protection circumvented? According to reports the AACS (Advanced Access Content System) DRM used on both HD DVD and Blu-Ray movies has been circumvented. A hacker by the name of muslix64 has released a tool called BackupHDDVD including its source code, and posted a video at Youtube showing how a movie is decrypted and then played back from a hard disk drive.
According to muslix64 he managed to locate unencrypted decryption keys in the memory while playing back a HD DVD movie on PC. This sounds awfully similar to the first CSS decrypting programs, which used a key obtained from a poorly designed DVD playback software to decrypt DVD movies. The BackupHDDVD package made available does not, however, include the decryption keys.

A new version of the software is scheduled for early January, which will hopefully shed some light on how the decryption keys are obtained. If there's a vulnerability in PowerDVD that allows the keys to be extracted, the software will most likely be removed from the list of allowed playback keys in future HD DVD movies. Nevertheless it will always be possible to extract the decrypted data stream in some manner as long as computers and operating systems are "insecure" (from software's point of view).

With the AACS decryption method out in the wild, it will probably not take too long until HD DVD movies surface on the Net and P2P networks.

If you're interested in the software, you can download it from our download server here. Basically all it does is decrypt the AES encryption on the movie using a key from TKDB.cfg config file.


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51 user comments

128.12.2006 1:26

Out of the frying pan and into the lion's den...

228.12.2006 1:38

Lots of HD-DVD movies are already in circulation on usenet, but the advantage in quality is negligible compared to the amount of time spent downloading one when compared with downloading an AVI rip of a 4.5G DVD, or even a full DVD itself. The return is not worth the [time] cost.

328.12.2006 2:21

"Lots of HD-DVD movies are already in circulation on usenet" - from HDTV source.

428.12.2006 6:10

Now we wait for prices to drop. . .

528.12.2006 6:49

Hahah;; I was prolly the first few people in the world to ever see this; because I was cruisin' youtube one day and I saw that this guy was talking about hacking AACS; and I was like "Yeah Right Man!! Already???" ; but then again, I should've know that this would happen in no time---somebody's already defeated the hd dvd encryption; ) and....Where There's a Will; There's a Way! ...but really, did the movies studios actually think that they'd be able to STOP the circumvention of CP???? I mean; come on, there's plenty of hackers out there that probably have twice the 'skill level' than any of those dickheads @ the MPAA...... Personally, right now, this doesn't matter toooo much to me AT THE MOMENT; but when I do get an Optical HD drive for my computer man; I'll be eyeing this little program right here.....[but then again; when media & drive prices drop to a decent price level; I bet there'll be PLENTY of HD backup programs available to the masses:)] But Overall; I'm joyed that AD put up an article about this; because it goes to show that no matter how hard 'they' try, there'll always be hackers er whatever out there that will find away around all this crap in a DRM-infested world:)

628.12.2006 7:45

For every copy protection device that they can come up with, there will always be a way to get around them. They will never be able to stop the rippers! Way to go!

728.12.2006 7:52

this is funny and i hate to tell you we dont have to wait for the price to come down considering hd dvd's are only 19.99 each where blu ray movies go for 70.00 on down

828.12.2006 9:40

First there was DeCSS and DVD-Jon, I guess this would be BackupHDDVD and and muslix64?? Fair Use prevails!

928.12.2006 9:56

@tabletpc actually the bluray dvd's are on the decline while hd dvd's new releases are $30+. I went to buy the ant bully the other day on hd dvd and was suprised to see that the bluray version was 24.99 while the hd version was 29.99. I have the xbox hd add on so I hope the prices drop.

1028.12.2006 10:11

Originally posted by tony2toes:
@tabletpc actually the bluray dvd's are on the decline while hd dvd's new releases are $30+. I went to buy the ant bully the other day on hd dvd and was suprised to see that the bluray version was 24.99 while the hd version was 29.99. I have the xbox hd add on so I hope the prices drop.
The reason why the HD DVD of The Any Bully is 29.99 is because it is in Combo format (HD DVD on one side and regular DVD on the other.) Combo format discs are usually 29.99 or more. Non Combo format HD DVD's are usually 19.99 to 24.99.

"The emergence of a single, high-definition format is cause for consumers, as well as the entire entertainment industry, to celebrate."
-Craig Kornblau, president of Universal Home Entertainment Feb 19, 2008

1128.12.2006 10:15

given time and effort....ANYTHING is possible....

1228.12.2006 11:42

Hopefully it won't be long for SlySoft to act.

1328.12.2006 20:47

Dear muslix64, Thank you. Thank you for selflessly risking your own freedom and future to give the masses the world over the ability to control their own media. Thank you for standing up for consumers rights in the face of ever consolidating media monopolies and governments becoming more and more passive to the will of their own people who they are supposed to be serving. Thank you for having the foresight to know that the world will benefit greatly when the transfer of information becomes 100% free and uncensored no matter who initially created it. You will LITERALY be remembered in history as a ‘modern day robin hood’, despite what that close minded, bought-and-paid-for judge in the elite torrents case has to say. This is an example of how one person can make a difference for the entire world.

1428.12.2006 23:04


1529.12.2006 1:12

Well it boils down to this... If they want to have a product then it will never be secure. Here's why, no matter how locked down and encrypted it becomes (even a ZKT method) they HAVE to let you watch the movie. Otherwise who would ever buy/rent it? They HAVE to. So as long as that's a requirement, let me watch the movie, then so will be UNLOCKING and de-crypting it. It's like anything else. A worst case scenario in any CP would be putting a video camera on a tripod and aiming it at the TV.. You'd still get the movie... More realistically though you could grab the streamed de-crypted content from the output (like instead of putting HDMI into your set, you put it into a capture device) and in realtime get the movie with minimal loss. Sorry, macrovision wouldn't apply hear (or DRM) because the HDMI handshaking and "macrovision" styled locking of the decompressed stream is SOFTWARE. So all you'd need is a custom capture unit that simply ignores this portion of the stream. (or spoofs a valid host-for-return on the handshake depending on the method used.)

1629.12.2006 9:50

I have to admit that I chuckled a little bit when I read this as well. It seems as if the only thing they've actually been able to do over the years is increase the cost of ripping the new stuff while the old stuff becomes basically free to rip. I have a very basic setup at home. My video card has a TV/Video out jack. This plugs directly into my TV. Anything that I can view on my computer can be put on my settop DVD burner if I want. Macrovision is a joke and easily defeated. As far as I know, that's the only scheme that works in streamed/decrypted video. Normal DVD's are now ripped fairly routinely... and it appears as if the new stuff will follow suit. I don't have a high end system so this HD stuff is all a waste of my time and money right now, but I know that sometime in the near future I will be able to view pretty much any video content I wish, including HD/Blueray and I have very little concern over the matter.

1729.12.2006 10:06

If only someone could crack 5c.

1829.12.2006 10:23

It was only a matter of time. There is no such thing as unbreakable encryption.

1929.12.2006 10:24

No the REAL wish for me is someone to penetrate the P5/6 cards. NOT like they did with the HU, which is really just glitching your way into the asic. I mean like with the H series cards. Literally entering the asic via OS and commands. That would be a great day. And there'd NEVER be another black sunday since we are all now aware of that method of attack. It would be checkmate for DirecTv. (anyhow off topic but still... hack the planet)

2029.12.2006 14:22

mean; come on, there's plenty of hackers out there that probably have twice the 'skill level' than any of those dickheads @ the M P A A...
LMAO amen brother!!! ok lets see how long it takes Slysoft to jump on this

2130.12.2006 5:22

To muslix64, THANK YOU Though I seriously do not believe that the studios will get the message abut fair use, it is good that someone can assist the rest of us in ensuring our rights. For how many thousands of years we have had libraries open to the public so that ALL folk could share information. There really is no difference between HD Copy Protection on a DVD and placing a lock on the library and saying you cannot come in to read a book. What is really funny/sad is that considering the huge number of really bad movies coming out of the studios, there is now the beginnings of better content available on sites like UTube. Overthrow the masters!

2230.12.2006 8:41

The one thing the studios haven't figured out how to stop is someone taking a HD camcorder and setting it up on a tripod in front of a HDTV set, plugging the audio in for direct sound and recording away at hearts content. I have seen it done and the copies look great.....

2330.12.2006 9:11

hummm interresting

2430.12.2006 9:18

So whens Blu Ray getting decrypted? :P not for a while considering its much more secure.

2530.12.2006 13:15

---------- Dufas: The one thing the studios haven't figured out how to stop is someone taking a HD camcorder and setting it up on a tripod in front of a HDTV set, plugging the audio in for direct sound and recording away at hearts content. I have seen it done and the copies look great..... ---------- Last time I saw something like that was somewhere late 80's and the camcorder was in the movie theatre. The funniest thing about that movie was that in middle of the movie the tripod fell. And that quality was something AWFUL!

2630.12.2006 16:12

I knew a movie projector operator that used a HD camcorder from the projection room to copy movies....until he got caught.. I was talking about in one's living room, in the privacy of one's own home and recording the movie there. It works well, is faster than using ripping tools and it is easy to go from a camcorder to a computer, convert video format and write to a DVD. A digital High definition camcorder works the best but any camcorder will work... If one doesn't drink or smoke too much, the tripod shouldn't fall over..but, at home, one usually has a second chance....

2730.12.2006 17:18

using a camera on a tripod is a good idea guys, but for me if i want to enjoy a movie i'll enjoy it by watching high quality especially for the sound. so the softwares still alot better. using a capture device i don't think it will work cuz you can't decrypt the code, you gonna see always flicker in the image..i think so

2830.12.2006 17:34

This is gonna hurt SONY PS3's big time yahoooooo

2930.12.2006 18:07

"camarienz (Newbie) 30 December 2006 22:34 This is gonna hurt SONY PS3's big time yahoooooo" If only you knew anything about anything! PS3 uses Blu Ray and this is HD DVD which has been decrypted!

3030.12.2006 18:19

daa sorry dude thought the article said HD DVD and Blu-ray movies,which PS3 has...but then I guess I no nothing about nothing

3130.12.2006 18:24

Thank you Hackers! You havs just assured us cheaper prices. When will they learn! Make them cheap enough so we don't need to kack.

3230.12.2006 18:31

Last time i checked BR was supposed to use CPS which is totaly different from AACS which would mean that it would take much longer to crack BR Copy protection. After some research it seems the BR camp went back on its own decision and went for AACS. This means that BR camp has fucked up something else!

3330.12.2006 18:35

Further more you are not completely correct it has a Blu Ray DRIVE not movie, it plays Blu Ray movies. America's education system has failed yet another soul.

3430.12.2006 20:09

Some jackass is gonna leave some sorry Blue Ray spinnin alone with some HD camcorder hooked up to some SERIOUSLY sweet sound system and whooohooo....come back in, and damage be done hahahahaha. Hell, there are a lot of folks with too much time on their hands out there...

3531.12.2006 6:44

I always said that not matter what the goverment want's to prohibit, somebody is going to make a program to obtain what is prohibit.

3631.12.2006 8:02

hey graet job u r the master now can u hack the "impossible blu-ray" with ll its chip that are for security and other bs that stops us from creating copies of it thanks

3731.12.2006 8:17


3831.12.2006 12:40

Thank you for helping to keep the "Land of the Free", just that!!

3931.12.2006 14:51

Thank you

402.1.2007 5:45

Let's just look at the situation logically. By the time any of us PS3 owners can even afford a Blu-ray burner (especially after the hit we took on the PS3 itself) and then are willing to pay the price for a blank Blu-ray disc, it will be WAY cracked open by then. Figure even if it were cracked today, and someone HANDED you a drive free of charge, would you pay $40 for a blank disc or just buy the movie for $26? It's simple economics... by the time the discs are at least 75% less than the movie costs, it will be cracked.

412.1.2007 22:49

muslix64 said: I broke AACS in 2 days, then ate a Jelly Donut in celebration of the cops who will be arresting me & putting me in prison for a decade. Viva la democracie! Viva la capitalism!!

422.1.2007 23:55

It was quite funny watching the video after what everyone has been saying about this DRM!

433.1.2007 16:25

if it was manmade it will always be "mancracked"

443.1.2007 16:27

if it was manmade it will always be "mancracked"

4510.1.2007 4:29

Damn I didn't get to see the movie it got taken down. Anyone know the title of it? I am sure it's back on there again...

4622.1.2007 14:41

that is awesome!!! Muslix64 is da Man!

4722.1.2007 15:43

Rumor floating about that blue Ray got cracked...check out Slyck...

4823.1.2007 15:45


4923.1.2007 16:05

Don't think he was talking about a movie. I think he/she was talking about DRM... as far as I know this is only a rumor, although a link would be nice. Although my 110 gig hard drive only would fit one...


5024.1.2007 4:30

Yeah I guess there was some footage on youtube but it's gone now. Or at least it's newly relocated post hasn't been listed here yet.
Typically when they ban a movie, the person just uploads it again.

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