Friday, December 14, 2007

How To Remove DRM From WMA - Is It Legal?

Technically, it’s illegal to remove DRM from WMA protected music. Digital Rights Management (DRM) is part of the music industry’s effort to curb piracy. There are legitimate reasons for removing it, but first understand DRM can not be removed from file sharing network downloads. Most tracks can be legally copied 3 to 5 times, and this has been exceeded long before they appear on a peer-to-peer network. You must have either purchased the music or have unrestricted free music downloads.

There is no easy way to remove DRM, but it can be removed with some effort and know-how. The best advice is to only download music in the format you need, and that you have the right to copy to an mp3 player, CD or other device. It’s also important to determine that the player will recognize and play the DRM protected WMA track.What if I Really Like the songs and Want to convert them?Let’s say you’ve already downloaded music and need to convert to another audio codec.

The common conversion method is to burn the tracks on a CD, then rip them in the desired codec’s format. Even this requires special ripping software and numerous steps because the DRM is still embedded in the tracks. And because codecs like WMA, mp3, OGG, AAC, etc. are lossy formats, the sound quality will be degraded.Lossy formats selectively discard sounds the human can’t hear to make the file smaller. But each format removes slightly different sounds. For example, converting a track using a WMA to mp3 converter is now missing the sounds that both codecs have deleted.

There are other ways to remove DRM and convert WMA to mp3, but they require numerous steps and more software. I found the most easier software. Only two clicks and your protected wma files become unprotected mp3. Conversion speed and quality is very good. Also I noticed when playback window is partially obscured it doesn’t affect converted file. So as for me MelodyCan is a great solution to convert protected files - legally.

So when you legally download music from services such as iTunes and Musicmatch Jukebox, the files are protected by Digital Rights Management (DRM). This prevents you from playing the music on unsupported players. I use MelodyCan software to remove protection. But remember distributing these files is illegal.

I found free trial version here ~>
You can try it too.

1 comment:

John said...

You know, technically, not only is it illegal to strip the DRM out of a file (according to the DCMA if you are in the US) but it's also illegal to teach others to do it too (or to provide software or links to software that allows folks to do it).

What I would suggest (again, if you are in the US) is to keep up the good fight like you are but to also encourage your US readers to write their congressmen/women to write "fair use" provisions back into the law.

Subverting the law is one thing, making it user/consumer friendly is a better long term approach.


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