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Tuesday, 20 February 2007 18:41

AnyDVD HD says bye-bye to HD DVD copy protection

By
Just as Slysoft’s AnyDVD software lets consumers easily watch copy-protected DVDs by remove region coding and going straight to playing the movie without waiting for FBI warning or other logos, AnyDVD HD gives consumers the same freedom with HD DVD movies at last.

With the defeat of HD DVD encryption making the recent news, it comes as no surprise to discover that SlySoft, makers of the CloneCD, CloneDVD and AnyDVD software programs, have released software to deal with the problems of HD DVD encryption.

It allows you to decrypt HD DVD movies, watch HDCP compliant movies on non-compliant HDCP monitors and graphics cards, and play back HD DVD movies through PowerDVD Ultra DVD viewing software for PCs.

For owners of an HD DVD drive for PCs and a collection of HD DVD movies, the possibility of making a backup to a hard drive now exists, restoring what should be a consumer’s right to making a backup in case the original is damaged.

While AnyDVD HD coupled with HD DVD compatible burning software could also be used for piracy, dealing with such large files on expensive blank HD DVD discs or sending 30Gb files across the Internet is much fiddlier than dealing with 3mb mp3s, limiting the effect of piracy – for now.

The cost of an HD DVD burner and blank discs is simply too expensive for most people – and if you can afford them, you’ll probably want to simply but the original HD DVD disc instead.

AnyDVD also comes with a feature called "magic file replacement". This lets you remaster any commercial movie disc using simple XML scripts. These scripts will "magically" replace the files on the physical disc. Slysoft say that “you can customize discs as you like without even making a copy to hard disk!”

As for Blu-ray Discs, SlySoft say that as the encryption methods are similar, the Blu-ray version of AnyDVD HD will soon be released.

No doubt both the Blu-ray and HD DVD camps are displeased with the development, as they would have been with the previously announced encryption defeats, and are working on ways to fight back as was originally envisaged – but this will only spur the real hackers to respond in what could be a tit-for-tat war.

The retail cost of the download is US $79, with an upgrade from AnyDVD at US $30. The software is available to download from Slysoft’s website and is available on a 21 day free trial.


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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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