Apple blocks iTunes Music Store DRM hack | iLounge News


Apple blocks iTunes Music Store DRM hack

Apple today confirmed that it has closed a security hole that allowed users to connect to the iTunes Music Store and purchase songs without digital rights management (DRM) restrictions. The company said that iTunes users will need to upgrade to version 4.7 or higher in order to buy songs. While not specifically stating so, Apple apparently updated the store to block access with PyMusique, recently released software created by three programmers including “DVD Jon” Johansen that enabled users to tap into iTunes to buy DRM-free tracks.

“The security hole in the iTunes Music Store which was recently exploited has been closed, and as a consequence the iTunes Music Store will now sell music only to customers using iTunes version 4.7,” Apple said in a statement provided to iPodounge. The company went on to note that approximately only 15 percent of iTunes users will be affected by this forced upgrade.

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You all need to re-direct your frustrations and complaints to the record labels and copyright holders, not Apple. Apple would be selling DRM-less files if it could, believe me. They have no interest in locking down files, but it is a necessary evil when dealing with the 4 major record companies. Do you see any digital services with significant catalog from the majors *not* using some sort of DRM. Wake up and smell the old folks who are running the labels.

Posted by Cliff Baldwin in San Francisco on March 21, 2005 at 9:50 PM (CST)


Someone needs to kick DVD Jon in the nuts repeatedly!  I am forced to use iTunes 4.6 because 4.7 will not let me import at any bitrate other than 128Kbps!

Posted by Galley in Greenville, SC on March 21, 2005 at 11:42 PM (CST)


DRM sucks but I deal with it.  Everybody knows that jhymn does the job of removing it but it’s illegal under the DMCA.  So use at your own risk..

Just make sure you dont blame in on Apple, it’s the stupid RIAA’s fault.

Posted by schnikies79 in evansville, in on March 22, 2005 at 12:20 AM (CST)


Ah well Jon here will come up with something else.
And I agree, this sucks ass for the people that can’t use 4.7.

Posted by Fraggy in NL on March 22, 2005 at 1:07 AM (CST)


Cliff Baldwin-

You’re wrong…Apple loves DRM as much as the labels do.  If there was no DRM people would buy one song and share it.  This would hurt Apple as much as the labels.

Posted by Talking Madness in Los Angeles on March 22, 2005 at 1:52 AM (CST)


The reasons DVD Jon has given for circumventing Apples DRM is that once we have become “addicted” to Apples standard, we will be at the mercy of the record companies. They may introduce advertising into downloaded songs….etc. etc. Like in DVDs these days, its not possible to fast forward ads in alot of the movies with which we pay top dollar for.

Those that criticize DVD Jon should get a clue before they say anything. This is the guy that has allowed us to backup DVDs with which we have a legal right to do (in Australia anyways). I for one, don’t appreciate being dictated to by these greedy companies as to how i use my legally purchased music/movies.

Posted by King Kong Pumpkin in Australia on March 22, 2005 at 4:47 AM (CST)


Not to sound apocalyptic, but this is just the tip of the iceburg.  Things will get worse from here.  Just wait until the next generation of media arrives where DRM has been implemented into its core.  Just remember your “just accept it, it’s not so bad attitude”  then.

Wait until you buy a new PC or home stereo or car stereo or portable media player and now you have to have this group of songs re-authorized by iTunes… this group of songs re-authorized by Napster… this other batch of songs authorized by HMV… your Shrek 4 DVD has to be re-authorized by Dream Works… your Star Wars Episode IX DVD has to be authorized by George personally (he likes to micro-manage)... and unfortunately the episode of BattleStar Galactica you recorded Tuesday night while you were out simply can’t be played now because your TV wasn’t the same TV used at the time of the recording. 

Permission for this… authorize that… and for what?  To put an end to piracy?  B.S.  The honest people will suffer and piracy will continue long after DRM is fully in the mainstream.  No, DRM offers many more salivating possibilities.

DRM ensures that you maintain a relationship with the authority to licensed your media for as long as you plan to use that media.  I’m sure there are CEOs having wet dreams over that prospect (sorry Steve, I know I said I wouldn’t tell…)

For as long as you plan to keep those iTunes songs you purchased, you’re going to have to keep going back to Apple and iTunes even if you no longer have any interest in them and you’ve moved on to bigger and better things.  (Lets just assume that you don’t use any loop holes to bypass the DRM and you play “nice” instead).

DRM is RIGHTS MANAGEMENT… nobody should so easily accept having ANY of their rights managed by someone else… particularly by a corporation.  Piracy is a big bad thing, but they are using it as a blanket excuse to gain far more than just protection from piracy.

Posted by Wolffe on March 22, 2005 at 8:46 AM (CST)


If there was no DRM, people would buy one song and share it?

There are gazillions of people still sharing music.  DRM is currently not forcing people to BUY their music, nor is it preventing people from sharing.  In fact, you can get much higher quality music, without any restrictions, via these other sources.  DRM isn’t protecting the iTunes songs… they’re just not worth sharing in light of whats already available.

So, if iTunes is still successful it has nothing to do with DRM.  It’s because there are enough honest people who are willing to pay for their music.  DRM has had no part in that.  In fact, I’m sure than many MORE honest people would buy music if it weren’t for the DRM and the low quality.

This is the exact same reason why the movie industry didn’t crumble after the VCR was invented.  People will continue to buy anything worth buying…

If the industry is not even selling the best it has to offer (128kbps? Pfft!), how can it judge whether people are not buying it because they’re all pirates and must be subdued with DRM or because they don’t want to buy crap when they know they could be selling much better.

Posted by Wolffe on March 22, 2005 at 9:07 AM (CST)


Would someone clarify the licensing restrictions on iTunes downloads, and the effects of DRM on transferring music files from one computer to another when upgrading the computer?

Let’s say I download a bunch of music files from Apple into iTunes on my PC.  A few years from now, I’ll want to move these files onto a new computer.  In fact, over the next 20 years, I expect I’ll want to upgrade my computer several times (hopefully). 

Am I restricted by DRM on the number of times I can move my downloaded music collection to a new computer?  The Apple license doesn’t seem to have this information.  I don’t mind paying for the music, I just don’t want to pay for it again in terms of time or money in 20 years. 

I understand that I can burn MP3 files to a CD and re-import, but I’d really rather keep the full fidelity of the file.  I would bet that in the future, technology will evolve to the point where MP3s will look pretty rough. 


Posted by rower in Maryland on March 22, 2005 at 10:14 AM (CST)



you aren’t restricted by the number of times you can move your DRM files.  In fact, you can store your files on an unlimited number of computers—but only five computers at a time can be authorized to play your music.

When you move to a new computer, you need to deauthorize that computer through iTunes.  That’ll free up one of the five “slots”.  So the limitation is five at a time, not five for life.

If you’re really concerned about the fidelity of the file, you should still be buying CDs.  I’ve bought perhaps $10 in iTMS songs (not counting the free ones from the Pepsi promotion) and $50 in CDs in the same amount of time.  In fact, I’ve bought more CDs since getting iTunes and my Shuffle than I’d bought for three or four years prior.  I can use iTMS to decide if I like an entire album or just one or two tracks.  If I like the album, there’s no reason for me not to go out and buy the CD.  Just want a single track and can’t buy it on a CD single?  That’s when I go to iTMS.

Posted by SPThom on March 22, 2005 at 11:57 AM (CST)


The only time I even use Itunes anymore is when I have to have an album at that moment an impulse like buy. I thought I would never buy another cd again but I choose to do whatever I want with my purchased music so Best Buy it is.

Posted by Goodlovin in chicago on March 22, 2005 at 1:29 PM (CST)



I think you hit the nail on the head with your talk about rights management.  Corporations are doing everything they can to manage us and I think it’s actually scary if people would stop and really think about it.

In defense of my statement “If there was no DRM people would buy one song and share it” I will give you a real world example.

My son and his friends all download songs from iTunes, but they won’t share them because they know that they have to authorize each others computers and this would take away from one of their total authorizations.  But, they will freely let one another rip their CD’s.  I bet you may feel the same way about your protected files.  They will burn CD’s of the tracks for each other as well, but this two-pronged form of piracy is a deterrent in and of itself.

With out a doubt the DRM has cut down the amount of sharing of iTMS files. 

Of course these songs are available for download from other sources, but that wasn’t the point I was trying to bring light to.

Posted by Talking Madness in Los Angeles on March 22, 2005 at 3:31 PM (CST)

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