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Playing WMP-protected WMA files on an MP3 player?

by crazyeyeskillah / January 16, 2007 5:09 AM PST

I have a whole lot of WMA files that were copyright-protected by WMP (windows media player) when I ripped them from the CDs. These are not from online services. I want to be able to play them on an MP3 player (WITHOUT reconverting the files or re-ripping them). They can play in other PC-based software players (ie. MusicMatch) but can't be burned to CD. Will any hardware MP3 player that plays WMA files play these, or does it have to have "Secure WMA" (like the Samsung YP-MT6" or Microsoft's "PLay For Sure" (like the iRiver T10) or will they not play on ANY mp3 player?

If you know for certain, please let me know!

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That's a MP3 minefield.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 16, 2007 5:12 AM PST

While the answer is yes, reports abound about players that claim to be Microsoft DRM compliant to fail to play some protected content. I'm sure you've read how the Zune implements yet another version of DRM that doesn't work with prior DRM content.

-> It's such a mess that my advice is to never keep any DRM'd content.

Bob

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Playing WMP protected WMA files on MP3 player
by crazyeyeskillah / January 16, 2007 7:53 AM PST

I'm still not sure if that answers my question. Perhaps another question is in order: Is the WMA files created by WMP when you rip CD's with the copyright option checked seen by your MP3 player as the SAME type of "DRM" files that are produced by online WMA music providers? (ie. Wal-Mart, Napster). Or is there a difference between the two types of protected WMA files?

If there is no difference, then what is more certain to play my protected WMA files created by WMP after ripping CDs: a player that plays WMA, Secure WMA, MS Plays for Sure, or all 3 or neither?

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I'll say
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 16, 2007 9:06 AM PST

Is the WMA files created by WMP when you rip CD's with the copyright option checked seen by your MP3 player as the SAME type of "DRM" files that are produced by online WMA music providers? (ie. Wal-Mart, Napster).

No.

Or is there a difference between the two types of protected WMA files?

Yes.

If there is no difference, then what is more certain to play my protected WMA files created by WMP after ripping CDs: a player that plays WMA, Secure WMA, MS Plays for Sure, or all 3 or neither?

I think this is still a minefield. Or maybe it's Russian Roulette. I've yet to find a safe unit that works without issues when DRM is involved.

Bob

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Info on WMA/WMP formats
by crazyeyeskillah / January 16, 2007 10:13 AM PST
In reply to: I'll say

Thanks. If the protected WMA format created by ripping CD's in WMP (after leaving copyright checked) is different than the protected WMA format from downloading online music, can you tell me what the name of the WMP/WMA protected format is, so I can do some research and check to see which mp3 players are supposed to play this format?

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Microsoft.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 16, 2007 10:40 AM PST

Sorry, but in this case Microsoft does not reveal deep details about DRM. It's closed source and they don't document it to help make it harder for those that want to investigate it.

Why not turn off the "protect my content" item in WMP or just use DRM free CD rips?

I don't think you are getting the picture yet. There is no safe choice when DRM is involved.

Bob

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fairuse4wm.zip or .exe
by MikeC557 / January 16, 2007 11:43 AM PST

Personally, DRM irks me. I understand there is some need for it, but when I am not that target person, when I am the legitimate purchaser and DRM is getting in my way, then DRM has to hit the highway. I suggest you read about this program and decide if its for you. I have used it and it has worked fine for me. I have only used it on WMP DRM, I've not tried Walmart downloads, etc. Here are two web links to the same program... It is called fairuse4wm.zip which will become .exe I am not advocating ripping off other peoples music or books, just eliminating the DRM on what you own anyway.

http://jamesholden.net/fairuse4wm-download/
http://lifehacker.com/software/windows-media/download-of-the-day-fairuse4wm-windows-197043.php

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Playing DRM WMA from WMP on an MP3
by crazyeyeskillah / January 16, 2007 1:19 PM PST
In reply to: fairuse4wm.zip or .exe

Thanks for the link to the fair use program. I dont think it would
help in my case, because the WMA files I have were created by the
version of WMP that ships with XP Home, which I believe is 9.0. And the Fair Use program is designed to work on DRM 10 or 11, which I presume is created by WMP 10 or 11.

For the record, I know very well not to create protected (or unprotected) WMA files. The reason I have them is because the copyright option is checked by DEFAULT, before I realized what WMP was doing. And I do not want to go and rerip all those CD's (plus I don't have them all anymore).

I'm not looking for guarantees here that an MP3 player will play my protected WMA files created by ripped CDs via WMP. I would just like to know what to look for in an MP3 player that will INCREASE my chances of playing these types of files on that player.

Anyone?!

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