Copy protection

Tom Spear speeddymon at
Wed Oct 4 09:41:16 CDT 2006

On 10/3/06, Martin Owens <doctormo at> wrote:
> On 10/3/06, Michael [Plouj] Ploujnikov <ploujj at> wrote:
> > > I'm by no means an expert on copyright law or copy protection, but I
> think
> > > that using any method other than writing directly to the MBR with
> those copy
> > > protection measures would be illegal because writing to a file
> (registry,
> > > wine-only proprietary db or any other type of file) as opposed to
> writing to
> > > the mbr like the copy protection is supposed to could potentially
> reveal
> > > data that the copy protection companies don't want being revealed, and
> > > therefore that would end up making wine a possible target for aiding
> > > circumvention.  Sure there are tools out there that crackers use that
> read
> > > the mbr and store it in a file, so that they can circumvent the copy
> > > protection, but that has nothing to do with wine.
> >
> We should allow are technical solutions to be bogged down with the
> EUCD, we are clearly protected for making a compatible program and I
> think we should strive to introduce the protection under the technical
> means we have available.
> the fact that we allow the copy protection to work at all proves we
> have no malicious intent.
> It would clearly be dangerous to write to the MBR and I would not
> recommend us doing so.

I agree  that we shouldn't write to the MBR, but I definitely think that we
should get some legal guidance before we proceed with writing anything to a
file (in this case), because

1) as we have seen all too often lately, the US court system doesn't always
see things the way everyone else does (cf NSA wiretapping bill(s)).
2) see previous emails about why writing _only_ the MBR to a file could be a
sticky mess for some of us.

I should add that I just thought about this and realized that we _could_
always just encrypt the contents of the file as it is written and read, so
that we can actually get somewhere, and not be exposing sensitive data at
the same time, but it's just a thought.  Anyone care to comment on that?



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