Famous Norwegian liberates Media Player file encryption

Written by Jason Cundall

September 2, 2005 | 13:16

Tags: #dvd-jon #osx #vlc #windows-media-player #windows-xp

Not content with hacking the DVD encryption system, beating the MPAA not once, but twice in court over it or opening up the iTunes DRM system, Norway's most famous Jon has been at it again. Unhappy with the way that he could only play streamed NSC files through media player, he's reverse engineered the application to provide a decoder for other players:

Norway's best known IT export, DVD Jon, has hacked encryption coding in Microsoft's Windows Media Player, opening up content broadcast for the multimedia player to alternative devices on multiple platforms.

Jon Lech Johansen has reverse engineered a proprietary algorithm, which is used to wrap Media Player NSC files and ostensibly protect them from hackers sniffing for the media's source IP address, port or stream format. He has also made a decoder available.

Johansen doesn't believe there is a good reason to keep the NSC files encrypted, because once you open the file with Media Player to start viewing the stream, the IP address and port can be revealed by running the netstat network utility that is included with most operating systems.

The hacker hopes his move will make content streamed to Media Player more widely available to users of alternative players on non-Windows platforms.

More from The Register here.

The decoder is already being feverishly bolted into the multi format, multi platform uber player VLC as we speak.

Is DVD Jon doing the world a service with his hacking shenanigans? Or quite the opposite? I'm sure you'll have your own view on this story and his previous antics - why don't you share them with the rest of us in our news forum!
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