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Piracy

Slysoft (of AnyDVD Fame) Closes After Increased International Pressure By AACS (myce.com) 193

jlp2097 writes: It looks like the recent activities by Hollywood studios and the AACS LA finally led to the closing of Slysoft Inc, creator of the popular AnyDVD HD tool for creating personal backups of BluRay/DVD/etc. Slysoft Inc's website confirms the closing due to "recent regulatory requirements". The final nail in the coffin has also been confirmed with slightly more details in their forum: "this is final. Slysoft is gone." Sad to see them go — it looks like legitimate buyers of BluRays will now have to find other sources for backing up their property to HTPCs and NASes.
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Slysoft (of AnyDVD Fame) Closes After Increased International Pressure By AACS

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  • I'm astonished that they lasted as long as they did. They always seemed to avoid trouble with a certain stylish insouciance.

    Ironically, though, I never bought it, rather I just got cracked copies off kickasstorrents.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Thanks for the new word to add to lexicon. Now to dictionary it. :)

    • But those cracked copies of new Blu-Ray titles will begin to dry up now. The people who created them were probably using AnyDVD to make them, or perhaps DVDFab which is sure to be the next target of the AACS. (Actually DVDFab has already been targeted; they were forced to modify the version sold to US customers to remove the ability to actually copy Blu-Ray discs.
  • Well that's a bummer. Who's going to take up the torch against the terrorists? Is there another program that does something similar?
  • by TheRaven64 ( 641858 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @01:06PM (#51583829) Journal
    Point out this case to them. Point out the total value to the economy of things like the iPod and other personal digital music players. Point out that this is vastly more than the total music and movie industries combined. Point out that laws surrounding DRM have ensured that no one could release a portable movie player that let you rip your DVDs / BluRays and so an entire industry has been unable to exist. Ask them why they hate job creation so much.
    • by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @01:13PM (#51583921) Homepage

      Why would your elected representatives give a crap about what you say? You don't make campaign contributions, you just vote for them. The campaign contributions and other legal bribes are what controls the real power.

      They know exactly who they work for, and it sure as hell isn't you. They don't care about job creation, they care about corporate profits.

      This is why the US government is letting the copyright cartels write significant chunks of treaties like the TPP ... the US government is most assuredly doing the bidding of these corporations.

      Make no mistake about it, they're not working for you or your interests.

      • by Grishnakh ( 216268 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @01:40PM (#51584179)

        Exactly. It's not like you're presented with a wide range of choices at the voting booth; the anti-corporate, anti-TPP candidates have a very difficult time getting anywhere. It's utterly amazing that Bernie and Trump are doing as well as they have (both are anti-TPP), but the establishment on both sides is doing everything it can to shut them down and make sure one of their chosen ones, Bush, Rubio, or Hillary, is guaranteed the election. (Of course, after the establishment gave him $100 million to spend on his campaign, Bush finally threw in the towel recently.)

        Even if an anti-TPP candidate wins the Presidency, he'll still have to contend with a Congress full of corporate tools.

        • Bush, Rubio will have pre existing condition come back + alot more HB1's to take our jobs as well.

          • What's wrong with pre-existing conditions? It's not insurance if you are able to wait to buy it until after you need it.

            I can't wait for my house to catch on fire then call the insurance company and demand they cover my house. And if I lose my house with everything I own in it, it can greatly destroy my ability to care for my self and family.

            Hillary will also add a lot more HB1 visas too. Really, the ones most likely not to do it are Trump, Sanders, and Cruz

            • by Grishnakh ( 216268 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @10:44PM (#51588995)

              What's wrong with pre-existing conditions? It's not insurance if you are able to wait to buy it until after you need it.

              Because health insurance isn't like other insurance. If you have to change jobs, that means you need to change insurance, so now suddenly the new insurance doesn't have to cover the old condition? That's bullshit. That's why they outlawed it. The root of the problem is tying health insurance to employment, but I don't see the Repugs trying to fix that either.

            • by sjames ( 1099 )

              If we weren't so busy trying to make insurance magically make outrageously expensive healthcare somehow magically affordable, perhaps it wouldn't be so important (just cover all citizens and be done with it), but pre-existing conditions frequently left people un-covered or trapped in a terrible job.

              Alas, none of the republicans would be at all interested in joining the civilized world or even pushing back against the highest medical costs in the world.

              While in theory the libertarians should try addressing t

          • Bush, Rubio ... + alot more HB1's to take our jobs as well.

            With the democrats, we won't even need to have that program once they start legalizing anyone that crosses our border.

            • by sjames ( 1099 )

              With the threat of deportation removed, the foreign workers will soon begin demanding reasonable American pay for an American job.

      • by wwalker ( 159341 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @02:25PM (#51584631) Journal

        Except for Bernie Sanders. Do yourself a favor and go google top corporate contributors for him and compare to Hillary. And make your own conclusions.

      • If a thousand letters flood in this month about a particular campaign point, it's likely that a large chunk of the population has been angered into action. That large chunk is probably 0.0000001%; and we know they're only the tiniest fraction of a population who find the point meaningful. If they're so up in arms as to start sending letters, it means there's a *lot* of people out there who are going to perk up if you start speaking about the issue, and raise pitch forks if you start pushing back against

        • You'd be surprised at how little it takes. A tiny proportion of the population ever bothers to contact their representatives. There was a Slashdot article a couple of years back about how many letters it took for an issue to come to a congressperson's attention. For a representative, it was only double figures, for a senator it was triple digits.
    • by Jason Levine ( 196982 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @01:28PM (#51584083)

      And then the media companies will counter with a big pile of campaign donation cash and a request for even more stringent DRM, high per-stream royalty rates, mandatory anti-piracy payments, and other pro-industry policies. Do you think your local politician will listen to you or that big bag of cash?

    • Money talks and bullshit walks. You don't get anything by writing letters.

      • You don't get anything by writing letters.

        That's not really fair. Getting put onto a watchlist for disloyalty to the United Corporate States of America, Inc. qualifies as "getting something".

      • Money talks and bullshit walks. You don't get anything by writing letters.

        You don't get anything by just giving up and doing nothing, either.

    • Cynicism (Score:5, Insightful)

      by KingSkippus ( 799657 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @01:40PM (#51584185) Homepage Journal

      I wish I had mod points to give the parent poster. I'm so sick of the "it won't do any good" cynicism posts like those above. You know what REALLY won't do any good? Sitting on your ass doing nothing except crying "woe is us" on Slashdot.

      Do you know how we got to the point where a lot of elected officials don't care what people think? People sitting around grousing about how elected officials don't care what they think. It's a self-fulfilling prophesy. If you're going to simply tune out of everything going on and not care or hold people to any standards, then really, why should anyone care what you think? I know if I were an elected politician, I wouldn't give a damn what people think who don't bother to let me know, or even vote. Why would I even waste my time?

      I vote in every election and primary I can. I do write to my Congresscritters. I tell my friends what I think about stuff going on and the people who are in and running for office. And yeah, sometimes it doesn't do any good, especially being a liberal in the Bible Belt South. But you know what? At least I'm trying. At least I'm not just whining about problems. And sometimes, people actually do make a difference, especially at a local level. You don't have to save the world, you just have to care. If you don't, then it sucks to be you, but stop trying to piss on the parade of those who do.

      By the way, for those of you in the "it doesn't make a difference" crowd, by all means, keep sitting on your asses. Your apathy gives people like me disproportionate say over things going on, so you know, thank you very much for that.

      • Do you know how we got to the point where a lot of elected officials don't care what people think? People sitting around grousing about how elected officials don't care what they think. It's a self-fulfilling prophesy.

        This certainly sounds great, but in reality caring and trying to change things won't work, or at least not in the USA. Why? Several reasons.
        1) The guys with money can simply buy elected officials with legal campaign contributions. The wonderful Supreme Court made this legal, carrying not or being too stupid to understand the ramifications of the decision.
        2) The vast majority of Americans simply vote on party preference for everything. Maybe 20% or at most 30% of voters actually examine the issues a

    • Actually... the reduction in cost from buying and re-buying the same media again and again *is* a path to job creation. The "you paid $20 for the DVD, and now you'll pay $20 for a DVD that plays on your iPod, and $20 for a license to play your $20 DVD on your Mac, and $20 again for a license to watch the DVD on your phone via Amazon" thing just prices a single good at $100 when the cost isn't actually higher. Instead of paying $300 for a device to play a copy of a DVD you dumped to an SD card, you have t

  • by Anonymous Coward

    They should just open source the product before they go :)

    • by WoodstockJeff ( 568111 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @01:47PM (#51584261) Homepage

      Decoding both DVD and BD are "known things". AnyDVD was not the only product doing it.

      Two important parts to doing BD, though - One is having a valid key to get past the AACS, and being able to replace it when a version of AACS comes out that revokes your current key. If your key has been added to the revoked list, simply putting a disk in the drive with that version of the list essentially "bricks" the drive for reading ANY Bluray disks until you change your key.

      The second is being able to implement the BD+ interpreter to fix up deliberate errors introduced into the video... And it changes periodically.

      Where the companies that sell such products get their "market lock-in" is keeping up these changes. AACS is easier than BD+, from what I read, because you don't always have to change your key when a new AACS revocation list comes out, but the BD+ programming can and does change multiple times per month.

  • BSD (Score:4, Funny)

    by IgnitusBoyone ( 840214 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @01:08PM (#51583853)

    Well, if they can't make money off it anymore we will gladly accept it uploaded to git hub.

    • This is exactly what I was going to say. Since they're being forced out of business, they should stick it to The Man and open-source their code.

      • Alas "The Man" will probably be fine with that. The entire point of Blu-Ray's access control features (vs DVDs) is that they can be constantly changing. AnyDVD in the public domain might cause a temporary blip in copying, but over time would become irrelevant.

        I'd still like them to do it though. F--- Blu-ray.

    • It was a cat and mouse game. In its current form it won't be much use and relied on a steady stream of new keys being cracked. This software isn't worth much without the method of acquiring keys.

  • MakeMKV (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 25, 2016 @01:08PM (#51583861)

    MakeMKV. You're welcome.

    • beta and time-limited to 60 days

      • beta

        Works.

        time-limited to 60 days

        I've been using it for years. Every now and then it tells me it's too old, but I just download the new version, reinstall it and it's back.

        That might change one day, but until then it's a perfectly good solution.

        • MakeMKV is free and not time-limited for DVDs, but costs money and has a time-limited demo available for Blu-rays.

          MakeMKV contains both freeware and shareware functionality. You may use MakeMKV to convert or stream DVD and AVCHD discs for free, as much as you want. Converting or streaming Blu-ray discs is shareware functionality. You can use shareware functionality for free during 30-days trial period. If you like MakeMKV and you want to use it after your 30-days trial version expires, you need to purchase

          • Yet the download page says:

            MakeMKV BETA has several major restrictions.

            Program is time-limited -- it will stop functioning after 60 days. You can always download the latest version from makemkv.com that will reset the expiration date. ...
            Blu-ray and DVD discs are fully supported. ...

            Aside from restrictions above, the program is fully functional. Produced MKV files are not degraded in any way and have no time or usage restrictions.

            The AC above me claims that the page you linked to can't be navigated to from any other page.

          • Wrong, it is in Beta and the developers allow for infinite free updates to the trial license while it remains in beta. Only when the beta is over will anyone need to pay for a license. To update an expired trial license, go to the official MakeMKV forums > News and Announcements > "MakeMKV is free while in beta" thread: http://www.makemkv.com/forum2/... [makemkv.com]

            The latest trial key is available there.

            "As stated on a main page all features of MakeMKV are free while program is in beta. You may purchase the full

      • Anydvd wasn't free either.

      • by amiga3D ( 567632 )

        Not if you buy it.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Many PCs (including my own HTPC) running software such as XBMC and MediaPortal depend on slysoft to play legit BluRay discs. I guess next time they update the BluRay encryption, I'll just have to download a pirate copy instead, because I won't be able to play the legit discs.

    • by Stripe7 ( 571267 )
      I lost the stupid blu ray player software CD the came with my blu-ray player years ago. A couple of major computer crashes resulted in total loss and reload of my main drive. Only way I can play my blu-ray movies on my PC was via Slysoft.
    • I believe that the studios and AACS are actively trying to destroy BD now, because with streaming and online sales they can control your content access and consumption far better, and they can cut out the middle-men and meat-space in the process. Taking the abilty for PC users to make use of their BD drives and discs is one way to ensure that.

  • by evolutionary ( 933064 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @01:11PM (#51583899)
    While you can argue piracy, the USA it is perfectly legal to make backup copies of commercial media you legitimately own. Very important for owners of old DVD, VHS tapes, laser disks and so on. Once nice thing about linux is it's a lot harder to just "shut down" because it's world wide and the USA is the most anal when it comes to copying laws. It's inverse is China where it's apparently unfashionable NOT to copy things..(and in many cases sell the copies..). Anyway, there are reasonable policies when it comes to backups of things we purchase but in the USA, the business are trying to require people to purchases their media more than once if possible. We gotta rethink these IP laws as they don't encourage innovation as much as they promote lazy fat cats to just rest on the laurels of a single creation for not only their lifetime, but the lifetime of their descendants.
    • While you can argue piracy, the USA it is perfectly legal to make backup copies of commercial media you legitimately own.

      No it isn't. You have the right to make a backup or archival copy, but they have to be backup or archival copies only. You cannot actually use them as long as your original is intact. (And no, you can't sell the original and use the backup.)

      Further, you cannot make a backup or archival copy if doing so requires the circumvention of a copy-protection scheme. So for nearly every single commercially-released DVD/BluRay/etc., making a copy is illegal under the DMCA.

      Copy it anyway. Fuck the DMCA. If you re

      • I think you're conflating the law and the EULAs. EULAs do generally forbid having more than one 'active' copy at a time but the law makes no distinction - people have licenses, and that's all that matters (aside from that DMCA wrinkle...)

    • While you are right, you miss the fact that this is an ENCRYPTION law problem, not a fair use/backup problem. Sony v. Universal is very clear that a backup is a backup is a backup, but it is trumped by the DMCA. You can copy unencrypted DVDs (they exist) for personal backups to your hearts content.
    • While you can argue piracy, the USA it is perfectly legal to make backup copies of commercial media you legitimately own.

      Translation - "I'm not a lawyer, so what I say is completely right from a legal standpoint because I say so."

      The DMCA actually explicitly forbids you from making backups of many commercial media, although not all commercial media fits the definition of what isn't allowed. However, since the courts haven't ruled very much on this subject for non-infringing (ie. home use only) copies and the few rulings to date have been extremely negative to the "I can legally copy anything I buy" crowd, I can only say

  • Unitl a "cracked" version is all over the torrents?

  • Please can someone post a (no-malware) mirror installer?
  • What was so illegal about this software? There seems to be a bunch of options for ripping BLue Ray and DVDs, as well as extracting video files.

  • Virtual clone drive was the only image mounting program worth a damn on windows.
  • by Solandri ( 704621 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @02:06PM (#51584467)
    I buy the blu-ray of a movie I like, then download it off a pirate website. I don't even own a blu-ray player. It's just that I have a home media server and would prefer to have movies in a format I can stream throughout my house. But Hollywood insists on only letting you stream movies over the Internet. No simple way to have a local copy which plays on all my devices.

    At first I borrowed a friend's BD drive and tried ripping the blu-rays and re-encoding the movies to a smaller size (raw rip of the LotR trilogy was nearly 200 GB). After struggling with merging the two-disc parts into one movie file and keeping subtitles synchronized, I threw in the towel and just downloaded it from a pirate site. Someone much better at video encoding than I had already licked those problems, plus his encode was smaller yet higher quality than mine.

    So I ditched my plans to buy my own BD drive for ripping, and now I just pirate the movies after buying the blu-ray. Though I'm not sure you can really call it pirating, since I own the blu-ray which by Hollywood's insistence that I'm buying a license not a copy means I'm licensed to own and view the content. What does Hollywood think will happen to folks who used Slysoft's software to rip their own discs now? If the lack of updates means the software won't be able to rip future blu-ray releases, those folks are going to start doing what I'm doing - buying the blu-ray and downloading the movie from a pirate site. Only some of them won't be as honest as me and will quickly realize they don't really need to buy the blu-ray in the first place.

    BTW, this inverts the backup argument. The blu-ray disc becomes my backup copy, safely stored in its case. Heck, I haven't even removed the shrinkwrap off of most of them. Though I prefer to think of them as a physical certificate of the license to the movie, and my backup would be downloading the movie off the net again.
    • Re:Increases piracy (Score:5, Informative)

      by spire3661 ( 1038968 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @02:36PM (#51584763) Journal
      I just want to point out that DOWNLOADING the file is absolutely legal under Sony V Universal since you own a legal copy. Its the UPLOADING that gets you in trouble. If you DL directly from an HTTP/FTP site, no problem 100% legal., but if you use a torrent, that can be a problem unless you zero out your upload completely.

      I went the same route as you giving up on optical, i wanted pristine disc rips, but its simply too much hassle when the scene people have it down cold.
      • Re:Increases piracy (Score:4, Informative)

        by rworne ( 538610 ) on Thursday February 25, 2016 @07:28PM (#51587763) Homepage

        Downloading content you could otherwise rip via fair use or space shifting is not legal.

        See MP3.com and their cloud service [wikipedia.org] which looks a lot like today's Apple's iTunes Match:

        Buy a CD, pop it in your computer, download MP3's from MP3.com without having to rip and encode.

        They lost because essentially having someone else rip your CD's for you requires permission from the copyright owner. That cost MP3.com $53.4 million.

        UMG v. MP3.com [wikipedia.org]

        • Legal for the downloader, not legal for the uploader. Sony v Universal and subsequent rulings say a 'backup is a backup is a backup', it doesnt matter where it comes from. This has been tested quite thoroughly. MP3.com 'made available' copyrighted works without permission of the copyright holder, which is the legal tripwire. Downloading is not 'making available'.
    • by SeaFox ( 739806 )

      I buy the blu-ray of a movie I like, then download it off a pirate website. I don't even own a blu-ray player. It's just that I have a home media server and would prefer to have movies in a format I can stream throughout my house. But Hollywood insists on only letting you stream movies over the Internet. No simple way to have a local copy which plays on all my devices.

      I gotta say UR DOING IT WRONG.

      If you're buying the discs you can just rip them with direct stream copying using MakeMKV. Then you get full blu-ray quality instead of some encoder's interpretation of "great picture and sound". This also keeps you off torrents, so you wont get targeted for any extortion attempts (even if it's legal for you to download the movie since you own the disc, the movie studios can lock you up in court for so long you lose even if you win). And ripping your own purchased copy to get v

    • I buy the blu-ray of a movie I like, then download it off a pirate website.

      Which is a violation...even if it sounds like a legit thing to do.

      I don't even own a blu-ray player. It's just that I have a home media server and would prefer to have movies in a format I can stream throughout my house. But Hollywood insists on only letting you stream movies over the Internet. No simple way to have a local copy which plays on all my devices.

      Current decoding DVD or Blu-ray is a Federal crime in the USA.

      At first I borrowed a friend's BD drive and tried ripping the blu-rays and re-encoding the movies to a smaller size (raw rip of the LotR trilogy was nearly 200 GB). After struggling with merging the two-disc parts into one movie file and keeping subtitles synchronized, I threw in the towel and just downloaded it from a pirate site. Someone much better at video encoding than I had already licked those problems, plus his encode was smaller yet higher quality than mine.

      Either way it was a violation.

      So I ditched my plans to buy my own BD drive for ripping, and now I just pirate the movies after buying the blu-ray. Though I'm not sure you can really call it pirating, since I own the blu-ray which by Hollywood's insistence that I'm buying a license not a copy means I'm licensed to own and view the content.

      Not quite. With a Blu-ray the idea is that it is played in a licensed Blu-ray device because in truth, they still want control of your playback rights and even the ability to revoke it at will.

      What does Hollywood think will happen to folks who used Slysoft's software to rip their own discs now? If the lack of updates means the software won't be able to rip future blu-ray releases, those folks are going to start doing what I'm doing - buying the blu-ray and downloading the movie from a pirate site. Only some of them won't be as honest as me and will quickly realize they don't really need to buy the blu-ray in the first place.

      Not everybody is willing to break the law at any cost to get their own way though. I'm not saying your scenario won't happen though.

      BTW, this inverts the backup argument. The blu-ray disc becomes my backup copy, safely stored in its case. Heck, I haven't even removed the shrinkwrap off of most of them. Though I prefer to think of them as a physical certificate of the license to the movie, and my backup would be downloading the movie off the net again.

      Your actual Blu-rays are le

  • If we can no longer make legal backups of our own discs, the only feasible alternative is to just pirate them all. No DRM, no ads, no unskippable crap... no bullshit. If the disc is damaged, just burn it again... or, keep the video file as part of a digital media library and gain the ability to stream it from anywhere. I see 0 value in physical media anymore.
  • If this holds up and there is no comeback, look for Netflix DVD and Redbox revenue to dry up faster.

    Let's face it streaming video is nice, but the studios frack it up with there contracts that cause content to disappear from Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, etc. It is the absolute worst customer experience to add something to your watch list only to find it gone when you go back to watch it.
  • Slysoft should release a new version that has a plug-in architecture.
    - the new version (as sold) will only rip unprotected DVD/BDs
    - 3rd parties (cough, cough) can distribute plug-ins that have the decryption functionality

    Ideally those plug-ins will be open sourced and given freely on the web.

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