Different POV on Linux

Discussion in 'AnyDVD HD (Blu-ray issues)' started by LordBusch, Apr 22, 2008.

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  1. LordBusch

    LordBusch New Member

    First: Yes, I do know the official statement concerning Linux support. But I'd like to express my thoughts about an other approach.

    There won't be a 1:1 conversion of AnyDVD HD to Linux because the current approach needs it to run in Kernelmode, witch is a no-go under Linux because SlySoft respects GPL (whitch is a big thumbs-up from me).

    But would this even be necessary? Why does AnyDVD need to run in Kernelmode in the first place?

    As I see it, it is necessary in a Windows environment, because AnyDVD needs to be completly transparent, in other words you need to fool the player software and (at least to some extent) even Windows.
    The interesting question is now, would it work, if there was a decryption library for linux that could run as an optional component completly in userspace? This would most likely mean, that media player software would need to be changed to actually use this library when accessing protected discs. But I don't think that would be a problem, because these players (at least the important ones) are all open source and I have no doubt that someone would create and publish the needed patches. Of course this person would need documentation about the librarys API, probably the biggest drawback of the whole approach. As far as I know this is how it currently works for protected DVDs (with the exception, that the library itself is open-source too).

    And just for completenes some thought about the financial part of the story. Developement costs of such a library shouldn't be too high since all the nasty low level system stuff would drop out. No need to play hide and seek with other software. All that remains (apart from a more or less general framework) is the decryption itself, and we alle know, the knowledge in this field is available ;). This leave more ore less only customer support and I honestly have no idea how to weight that cost-wise.

    At last a few words about me. I'm currently no SlySoft customer because all I wan't (today) is BD playback, and for that I have PowerDVD (bundled with the drive) and BD playback is the only thing that stops me from installing linux (witch I would prefer) on my HTPC. So my interesst in AnyDVD is more or less limited to the hope of a linux version, as this seems to me more likely in the near future than a living-room proof (read transparent to the user) open-source alternative :/

    Now I hope I didn't lose your attention on the L-word ;)

    Best regards
  2. Fernando

    Fernando Redfox Development Team

    Rest assured, no open-source library of any media player will ever use a commercial library if there's one available. And even if so, they would only extract all keys and then create their own open-source library. Actually, as you already mentioned, multiple AACS decryption libraries exist. All they lack of are current keys and a BD+ decryption implementation.

    So even if SlySoft releases a decryption library for Linux it would only take a couple of days for the open-source community to "suck it dry", create a new open-source version and eventually port it back to Windows. Not to mention to publish their "giant achievement". "Compatibility Management" is not very easy and very, very expensive. And as you certainly know there's no licence on a decryption key.

    And no one prevents the open-source community or anyone else out there from updating their library.
  3. liels

    liels Well-Known Member

    I bought HD-DVD because 1) the team is pretty open about what they are doing and why; 2), more importantly I believe they are going to keep up with the folks that are trying to obscure the content they are selling to their customers. (Aside: I continue to be amazed that outfits keep selling this "service" to producers but I guess I never had to deal with finding another point to quarterly earnings and thinking that yes, if I only spent another $X I'd get Y more revenue from the denizens of pirate bay would add to my bottom line. Yikes.)

    Prior to that I'd been using the tools that were available to linux. And playing them with mplayer. And yes, those are in user space; I doubt there is any need for them to be in kernel space.

    As a practical matter, I'm currently dual booting, and the mplayer option continues to get better. With some luck ffmpeg will be able to hook into ATI's display acceleration features in time.

    Sadly, I'm sympathetic to James & SlySoft not wanting to punch the tar-baby of closed source linux software. Many (if not nearly all) that have tried to do that for the desktop market have been burned on several levels, including being on the receiving end of flames. Which I find really too bad because things like Any/PowerDVD for linux (as well as Loki games) is something I'd welcome and pay for. Corporations get it; they're perfectly happy to pay for Oracle on Linux but the linux desktop users are a different story. IMHO there's room for all kinds of business models and motivations for developing software in the world. Open source is especially good when projects important to people become unmaintained.

    Anyone given AnyDVD a go under Wine? VMware? How about powerdvd?
  4. LordBusch

    LordBusch New Member

    Well... what stops anyone from doing exactly this with the windows version?

    Anyway, I do know the possibilities already available and I do know how to obtain keys. It's just too much of a fuss for comfy home-cinema experience in my opinion. A gap to fill but I guess it won't happen anyday soon.

    And just to mention, as soon as someone starts to seriously create and maintain an open-source BD lib with all it takes, they won't stick with Linux.

    Best regards
  5. DrinkLyeAndDie

    DrinkLyeAndDie Retired Moderator

    If Slysoft made a DVD decryption program for Linux then it would be only a shadow of what AnyDVD is. AnyDVD does a lot of stuff on-the-fly. That power is truly what makes AnyDVD so special.

    It's possible for Slysoft to make a Mac, BSD, or Linux variant of their software but, personally, I hope they don't. I want them to focus their time, energy, and manpower on their Windows offerings.

    I agree with Fernando's assessment. I could easily see the work being ripped apart and re-used by someone else. Sadly, that happens far too often.

    Just my two cents.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2008
  6. sej7278

    sej7278 Well-Known Member

    Not for me - I never use AnyDVD-HD to watch stuff, just to rip to hard disk and then watch/recode/burn later. I know James has always made the same point as you, but for me its not an issue - I'd prefer just a userland ripper to kernel-based driver.

    That could happen on the Windows version anyway - its not as if Slysoft are going to distribute the source .tar.gz, they'd make binaries such as RPM's for RedHat/SuSe and .debs for Debian/Ubuntu.

    Frankly the FOSS brigade are above that sort of shenanegans, its the Windows people who do the ripping-off. Its FOSS software that gets used for no thanks at all in various commercial offerings, Mencoder, ahem FFMPEG cough.

    The whole Slysoft suite works fine for me under VMWare Server on Linux, in fact its all I keep my Windows CD around for these days, so well done you've given Microsoft a sale!

    I've not tried it on VMWare Fusion on my Mac Mini, but that has a Matshita drive, so doubtful it would be much use. It certainly wouldn't work on WINE.

    As far as PowerDVD for Linux - its called LinDVD, but its nowhere near as good as MPlayer or Xine and is commercial, doesn't play MPEGs, Divx or HD stuff, just DVD's.

    The Nero guys seem to have made a success of NeroLinux, its the only Bluray/HDDVD burning app on Linux at the moment, although most people prefer to use K3B for CD/DVD burning.

    At the end of the day its Slysoft's choice, and I doubt Linux/Mac sales would cover the development costs at the end of the day - shame those programmers aren't paid in Dollars still :D
  7. pjouy

    pjouy Well-Known Member

    MY POV on Linux users...

    Hi all

    I'm sorry, but I DO agree with James' position about porting AnyDVD HD to Linux platform.
    So what is the problem? In fact, there are two problems.

    1. We all know what Linux community has in mind: massive reverse-engineering to make everything free and make everything open-source.
    Look at Nero's Linux version: most people use another free software, or cracks NeroLinux to use it, so very few people pays for it.
    But please don't tell us about companies which buy Oracle for Linux: they have money for it! This is not what the desktop user has in mind today, unfortunatly. Just ask to people: Linux = free OS and free softwares. End users don't care about the source code.
    So what's the plan with AnyDVD HD? Easy to guess: Slysoft make a version for Linux (a paying one, like the Windows version). Whithin the next two weeks, it is cracked, reverse engineered (Linux' community speciality, and please don't tell me it is wrong, there are sooo much examples!), slightly modified or re-written, and finally released as open-source and free software. Slysoft's team is disgusted and won't earn a cent or so for porting their miraculous software to Linux.

    2. The answer from the BD aliance will be easier and quicker: they will know how to disable AnyDVD mecanism, making all "old" players like PDVD 7.3 or Nero 8 not being able to play new BDs without an upgrade (and we know how silly they are!).

    I'm sorry, but for me this is a non-sense porting AnyDVD (HD) to Linux.
    I'm happy to pay for a software like AnyDVD, rewarding the team's efforts. And I don't want their job to be ruined because some people don't care about else's hard work as it is not released in open-source and for free. Sorry.

    This was my point of view.
  8. Webslinger

    Webslinger Retired Moderator

    Actually, Anydvd's biggest strength has always been for HTPC use, and the reason for that is because Anydvd decrypts on the fly at the driver level for Windows so the entire system sees the disc as being decrypted. While you may not care about that plenty of Anydvd users do care. I never want to have to rip first just to use a disc the way I want to. Wastes my time . . .

    That said, I can understand Linux users wanting Anydvd to work on Linux, but as James has pointed out Anydvd for Linux is simply not happening any time soon.
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2008
  9. Fernando

    Fernando Redfox Development Team

    Actually, a lot. The windows edition is protected.

    A linux edition could be protected too but that takes a lot of work. More than you can imagine. It is so much work to make a linux software working on any linux machine, even a single distribution if you only provide a compiled library.

    Linux is famous for reinventing a new standard/specification with each version iteration.

    There might be a linux/mac version that does all disc copying but a single decryption library is out of the question.
  10. liels

    liels Well-Known Member

    Binary only commercial linux applications can work well (functionally, if not financially). Just statically link everything and you're good to go. (And when your not LD_ASSUME_KERNEL=2.2.5 can help ;)
  11. mwb1100

    mwb1100 Active Member

    Even if it could technically be done by creating a user-mode Linux variant of AnyDVD and even if it could be a financial success, I'd prefer that James and Co. keep focused on the current product. I'm sure there's always plenty to keep them fully occupied without having to divide their attention.
  12. DrinkLyeAndDie

    DrinkLyeAndDie Retired Moderator

    I definitely agree on this. :)

    Furthermore, with SD DVDs the issue isn't as big with ripping a disc to your HDD since it is so much quicker. I tend to always rip SD DVDs to my HDD for playback because on my somewhat older system it results in smoother playback. With newer and more powerful systems with HD-DVD and BD drives you have more data to rip and it takes longer. For purely watching an HD/BD disc on your HTPC the on-the-fly power of AnyDVD HD becomes even more evident.

    Of course, in the end, the decision is up to the developers and their boss. :)
  13. sej7278

    sej7278 Well-Known Member

    i take extreme offence at that comment. linux is about the polar opposite of cracking software - indeed you can't even look at leaked source or decompiled binaries and contribute to a FOSS project. reverse engineering is only for hardware, not software, and the vendors usually thank the community for doing it - saving them the work.

    i'd like some of your many examples, i can only think of examples of the opposite - where opensource software is illegally used in commercial software/hardware (not slysoft, they respect the gpl).

    as i recall the first cracks for dvd-css and hddvd-aacs came from linux and the opensource community, slysoft use that like they use mencoder/ffmpeg in clonedvd mobile.
  14. Webslinger

    Webslinger Retired Moderator

    No That's complete nonsense. While it's true that Slysoft uses mencoder in Clonedvd mobile, Slysoft did not use anything from the open source community with respect to cracking AACS.

    This was written in May, 2007:


    And css was likely (although I'm not positive) cracked in Dvd Region Killer by Olli before Slysoft acquired it and redeveloped the program to what Anydvd is today. Slysoft did not require anything with respect to cracking anything.
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2008
  15. DrinkLyeAndDie

    DrinkLyeAndDie Retired Moderator

    Webslinger made a good post so I won't dilute it with my own comments but in terms of CloneDVD mobile using Mencoder [but FFMPEG initially] and MP4Box I'm really not sure how in heck you can draw any comparison.

    Slysoft openly states they are using the Mencoder & MP4Box and correctly follow licensing rules in the manner in which they use them.
  16. Fernando

    Fernando Redfox Development Team

    The specification for AACS is publicly available, all you have to do is read. And the fact that AnyDVD HD can decrypt all HD titles and the opensource community cannot also demonstrates without a doubt that both use different libraries/implementations.

    Why does the opensource community refuse to update their libaacs?
  17. pjouy

    pjouy Well-Known Member

    You killed yourself. You are right about CSS. I may add that Dolby decoding has been illegal without license (not sure for today). I should add too that the firsts things hacked we see on consoles (like quite recently on the Wii) is a penguin. Hardware reverse-engineering is illegal too (even if they thanks the community). Software GUI copy (not to mention XP interface full copy); hacking for being able to run Windows' softwares on Linux or even DirectX games... I may stop here.
    I mean, don't make things like "Oh, I wrote some code and, oh my god, it can run Windows executables, what a surprise! I didn't want to do that at the start". Please, please.

    But, don't treat me as a pro-Microsoft. They are not clean either!! BUT, what I strongly think, is that people who do hard work may earn money with the job they do, and don't want to be copied by others, who will distribute copies for free...
  18. loric

    loric New Member

    This thread is so full of common misconceptions that you can write a book from it.

    I am a long time lurker, I am a Linux user (I also contribute with my code in a Linux HTPC program), but I am also a movie fan and that's why I've just bought my 1st Windows PC with a BD drive. My plan is to buy and install AnyDVD HD on it because it's the only software that, as far as I can read, allows me to watch movies the way I like (my plasma panel is not HDCP compliant and I plainly hate region code restrictions). I don't care about ripping, copying, backuping, I only want to be able to watch movies, at their best quality... movies I pay for.

    This being said, I am astonished at reading some statements about Linux.

    It's been said that Slysoft can't code an AnyDVD Linux port because that would need to run as a kernel module and that wouldn't be accepted by the Linux community and by Linux users. This is not necessarily true. The Nvidia gfx driver binaries are shipped with the most common distros and the only downside is that you get a console warning at boot-up that says kernel is tainted by a closed source module. Hardly a showstopper IMHO (and those nvidia drivers are the most used on Linux PCs, second, maybe, only to the Intel ones).

    It's also been said that if Slysoft coded a user space GNU/Linux library to decode AACS, that would be ripped apart, cracked and cloned by those evil Linux "hackers". Well, this is FUD. Anybody that bothers to read the fact knows it's the other way round: there are tons of commercial products that "steal" open source software without complying to the license. The Linux community is formed by individuals that respect other programmers' work and would never steal from it.

    The guys at Slysoft are free to decide whether they want to release a Linux version and we can't demand it from them. I also agree that probably the Linux world is not suitable for Slysoft's commercial model, but slating Linux to justify their choice (and, frankly, there's nothing to justify being that their free choice) can't be accepted.

    I'm sorry tho pop out from nowhere to write this as my 1st post, but hey... I am a Linux user and I want to buy a commercial product (AnyDVD), this, alone, should prove Linux users are not that bad.

    Oh, sorry. Didn't realize this was a Windows vs. Linux thread. Anyway, you should learn the facts, because, no offense, if you believe Windows invented the mouse+icons GUI, you don't know what you're talking about.
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2008
  19. pjouy

    pjouy Well-Known Member

    This is a good point for you, but I'm afraid that you do not represent all users (Linux or not).

    No, this isn't that kind of thread; bad interpretations from you, sorry.
    No offense to you, but I know that it is Xerox (and not Apple) that invented "mouse and icons" as you say, I'm not ignorant to that point. I am talking about the interface of XP which, only in part for this example, has been reproduced in Asus' EeePC (same buttons, same style after clicking of the big main icons).
    I don't treat Linux community as "evil" like you say, and some people do a very impressive job. BUT, the community is far, very far away to be "angels", as you seems to think.
    I can't tolerate that because it's open-source and free (most of the time), that people can do all what they want (despite the free-model is not compatible with some commercial protections we need today, but I don't like DRM either!); and being protected for by institutions or companies like IBM.

    But we're going off-topic here.
  20. loric

    loric New Member

    Then you should address your complaints to Asus (which, incidentally, sells their EeePC as a commercial product), not to the Linux community. You can customize a Linux GUI to the point it behaves like Windows XP the same way you can customize Windows XP's GUI to look like MacOS Leopard (Windows Blinds anyone?).

    Yup, my point was simply to correct many factual errors I've read here and, at the same time, point out that Slysoft has any right to decide if and when (if ever) release a Linux version of AnyDVD HD. I also agree on their current decision of not supporting Linux, but I disagree on the motivations that were expressed here.

    Now, I have to figure out which BD player is better (probably I'll buy PowerDVD), then I will buy AnyDVD HD, then I will start to buy Blu-ray discs. Yes, I used the verb "buy" thrice, even though I am a GNU/Linux user. For me the word "free" in "free software" doesn't refer to its price, but to the concept of freedom. Heck, I regularly donate money to Mandriva because I use their distros, even though you can download their software for free.

    The same applies to movies: AnyDVD will grant me the *freedom* to buy my movies wherever I find the best price (and/or the best quality, etc.), in spite of region code limitations. AnyDVD will also give me the freedom to watch them on my plasma panel at its native resolution (1024x768 ) even though the latter is not HDCP compliant. I also believe that AnyDVD HD is an impressive piece of software and it's worth its price, but this "commercial software vs. Open Source software" war is pure nonsense, both model can coexist.
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2008
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