Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 21st May 2012 20:03 UTC
Windows For Microsoft, the traditional desktop is old news. It's on its way out, it's legacy, and the harder they claim the desktop has equal rights, the sillier it becomes. With companies, words are meaningless, it's actions that matter, and here Microsoft's actions tell the real story. The company has announced the product line-up for Visual Studio 11, and the free Express can no longer be used to create desktop applications. Message is clear.
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RE[3]: "19th Century Dentist"
by BluenoseJake on Wed 23rd May 2012 23:05 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: "19th Century Dentist""
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Even commercial developers were shafted when microsoft broke thousands of drivers. And customers were shafted when their hardware was no longer usable

I call BS, driver developers had over 3 years to get ready for Vista, and they dropped the ball. It had nothing to do with DRM, it had everything to do with the developers. MS changed the driver model, boo hoo, they do that once in a while. They did to the graphics card manufacturers with XP, they did it to the rest with Vista.

Please, get over this fictitious DRM issue. The hardware developers just basically refused to ship drivers.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: "19th Century Dentist"
by Alfman on Thu 24th May 2012 05:41 in reply to "RE[3]: "19th Century Dentist""
Alfman Member since:


"I call BS..."
"Please, get over this fictitious DRM issue. The hardware developers just basically refused to ship drivers."

I was one of many windows kernel devs disgruntled over the vista changes. Most drivers for windows XP actually did work *without any modification* when Vista crypto verification and DRM restrictions were circumvented, but these tools were subsequently revoked by MS. Here are a few links + excerpts that might change your mind with regards to the Vista DRM issues, bare in mind that they are from MS sources.

Thanks in advance for apologizing about the BS statement :-)

"The Microsoft® Windows Vista™ operating system introduces a new type of process known as a protected process to enhance support for Digital Rights Management functionality in Windows Vista."

"Drivers must have the correct content-protection signing attribute to handle some premium content. Microsoft Windows XP audio drivers work in Windows Vista, but cannot handle certain types of premium content if they do not have the correct content-protection signing attribute. If the content requires this attribute, the new protected user-mode audio (PUMA) engine enforces the requirement."

"In order for you to receive the Protected Media Path compliance and robustness rules, you will need to send an email request to WMLA will provide you with the licensing requirements and steps you will need to take."

"What you are describing is certainly possible in Media Foundation using Protected Media Path (PMP), however MF does not ship with such a network sink. A DTCP enabled network sink would need to be written and it would need to be signed by Microsoft in order for it to be loaded and used by MF."
"PUMA and PVP define interfaces and support specific to audio and video players, device drivers, and hardware, but PMP also relies on a general kernel mechanism introduced in Windows Vista called a protected process. Protected processes are based on the standard Windows process construct that encapsulates a running executable image, its DLLs, security context (the account under which the process is running and its security privileges), and the threads that execute code within the process, but prevent certain types of access."

"Further, to prevent compromise from within, all executable code loaded into a protected process, including its executable image and DLLs, must be either signed by Microsoft (WHQL) with a Protected Environment (PE) flag, or if it's an audio codec, signed by the developer with a DRM-signing certificate obtained from Microsoft. Because kernel-mode code can gain full access to any process, including protected processes, and 32-bit Windows allows unsigned kernel-mode code to load, the kernel provides an API for protected processes to query the 'cleanliness' of the kernel-mode environment and use the result to unlock premium content only if no unsigned code is loaded."

As a vista developer, you can get your driver signed by microsoft's chain of trust, but unless you pay/qualify for PMP certification, then your driver will taint the Vista kernel, imposing additional DRM restrictions on end user systems. When the kernel is tainted, the entire system mysteriously enters a reduced functionality state where hidef video & audio quality can be capped and ports can be disabled; the user is left wondering why things are broken. For example, this next guy came to the conclusion netflix was rejecting his new hidef monitor for hidef 420P streaming, but I actually suspect the actual cause may have been a non-PMP driver tainting the Vista kernel and consequently telling netflix not to render premium content. Even though he never uncovered this, his further comments seem to fit with this assessment.

You can blame manufacturers for not revisiting older hardware/software and spending resources to update/certify their older drivers. But MS deserves to share the blame for preventing unsigned/self signed drivers from running that were otherwise completely compatible at an API level. Also MS deserves all the blame for all DRM related driver problems.

Edited 2012-05-24 05:58 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2