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  1. Member
    Join Date: Jul 2012
    Location: Dallas
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    I'm recording digital TV with a cable card to my hard drive just like a DVR. It is using Windows Media Center and creates files with a .wtv extention. If I watch them on the PC, all is just fine. But if I try to watch them across the network at all, they crash in the middle of the movie.
    I suspect it is DMS causing the crash and I'm wondering if any of you might be able to pitch an idea that might help. I've tried converting to another file format with a couple of other tools I have, but they don't remove the DMS for some reason. They claim that they do, but .... I just want to be able to watch them elsewhere in the house on a TV rather than the PC. I also recorded a TV show for my sister and wanted to get it to her. But since it is going to crash, I haven't figured out what to do yet.

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks... the newbie....
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  2. Member
    Join Date: Oct 2004
    Location: Freedonia
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    What are you using on the PC to record? Software and hardware please. How are you connected from the cable device to your PC - via HDMI, component, composite, etc.?

    DRM can't be removed from protected WTV recordings. However, it might be good to know what you are recording. HBO, for example, will certainly have DRM on it. Shows on Fox, CBS, NBC and ABC should not be protected. Most programs are actually not protected, but some of this depends on your cable provider and how you are setup. Some cable providers have been known to screw up and protect things they are not supposed to. However, if you record via component or composite you shouldn't get DRM. Recording via firewire or HDMI is another matter.

    What tools have you used for conversion? DVRMSToolbox and MC-TVConverter are probably the best. They shouldn't work with truly DRMed content so if you get output from them without errors, it should be OK.
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  3. Member
    Join Date: Jul 2012
    Location: Dallas
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    I'm using a Ceton InfiniTV USB which contains the card. Verizon (FIOS @ 35/35) is the provider. I'm using Windows Media Center which creates the wtv files. The record/playback works just fine as long as I don't view it across the network.

    I'm recording Showtime (HD) and Max (HD) to get the movies I want to watch later, along with a few Fox TV shows (720p). I can't view ANY of them anywhere but on the PC they were recorded on.

    I can rip and store my DVD's in MKV format, then I just copy to my NAS drive and I can view them on the TV with Boxee Box. I was hoping to be able to just go over the network with Boxee and view these recordings. I thought it would be just like watching something revorded on the DVR.

    Wondershare Video Converter Platinum claims to allow me to just convert the format to .ts or mpeg and I should be able to view them. Not so. Would DVD Fab or something like that work? I guess I just don't understand how the DRM works.

    Crusher
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  4. Originally Posted by Crusher75060 View Post
    I'm recording Showtime (HD) and Max (HD) to get the movies I want to watch later, along with a few Fox TV shows (720p). I can't view ANY of them anywhere but on the PC they were recorded on.
    The files are encrypted. You will not be able to do anything with them other than watch them on the computer that recorded them. Shows recorded from unprotected sources can probably be copied and played anywhere. Try recording something from PBS, for example. On most systems everything but the free local broadcast channels will be encrypted.

    If you find a crack, please let us all know!
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  5. I'm a Super Moderator johns0's Avatar
    Join Date: Jun 2002
    Location: canada
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    Changed the title so more people can help and moved to the media center pc forum,doesn't belong in user guides forum.
    I think,therefore i am a hamster.
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  6. Member
    Join Date: Aug 2006
    Location: United States
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    Originally Posted by Crusher75060 View Post
    I'm recording digital TV with a cable card to my hard drive just like a DVR. It is using Windows Media Center and creates files with a .wtv extention. If I watch them on the PC, all is just fine. But if I try to watch them across the network at all, they crash in the middle of the movie.
    I suspect it is DMS causing the crash and I'm wondering if any of you might be able to pitch an idea that might help. I've tried converting to another file format with a couple of other tools I have, but they don't remove the DMS for some reason. They claim that they do, but .... I just want to be able to watch them elsewhere in the house on a TV rather than the PC. I also recorded a TV show for my sister and wanted to get it to her. But since it is going to crash, I haven't figured out what to do yet.

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks... the newbie....
    Currently, the only way to watch encrypted .wtv files via a network is with a Windows Media Center compatible media extender. As far as i can find out, the XBox 360 is the only such product that is readily available at present. http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/set-up-a-windows-media-center-extender

    Recording the screen is the only way to get around the encryption used. Supposedly it is the same as what is used for Silverlight.
    Last edited by usually_quiet; 15th Jul 2012 at 22:17.
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  7. Originally Posted by usually_quiet View Post
    Currently, the only way to watch encrypted .wtv files via a network is with a Windows Media Center compatible media extender.
    Ah yes, I forgot about media extenders. Even with a media extender the video file has to stay on the computer that recorded it. This also means that when that computer (whatever component's are used to identify the computer -- CPUID? Hard drive?) dies you will no longer be able to play any archived recordings. Hollywood has this completely sewn up.

    I wonder if you ran Windows Media Center in a virtual machine if you would then have an immortal Windows installation that you could clone and run on other computers via the VM?
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  8. Member
    Join Date: Aug 2006
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    Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    Originally Posted by usually_quiet View Post
    Currently, the only way to watch encrypted .wtv files via a network is with a Windows Media Center compatible media extender.
    Ah yes, I forgot about media extenders. Even with a media extender the video file has to stay on the computer that recorded it. This also means that when that computer (whatever component's are used to identify the computer -- CPUID? Hard drive?) dies you will no longer be able to play any archived recordings. Hollywood has this completely sewn up.

    I wonder if you ran Windows Media Center in a virtual machine if you would then have an immortal Windows installation that you could clone and run on other computers via the VM?
    CableLabs is owned by the cable TV industry, and was willing to certify a computer-based recording system (hardware plus software) only if it ensured that protected content would be securely tied to the box that made it, similar to a TiVo.

    If Microsoft and the makers of the CableCARD tuners had been unwilling to do what CableLabs wanted, there would be no PC-based recording solution for digital cable in the US. The cable industry doesn't want customers to use their own equipment, even though they can still charge customers a "digital outlet fee" for a using a TiVo or PC CableCARD tuner that makes it nearly as expensive as a cable box rental. The FCC is the only entity that has the power to force the cable industry to do anything that they don't want to do, and even that power is limited.

    I don't think running WMC in a virtual machine will be useful. From what I recall, encryption is tied to the motherboard as well as the Windows 7 license, but the key also changes over time. If the operating system is restored from a backup to the exact same physical system, some recordings may still be unavailable. http://www.sevenforums.com/media-center/153010-why-isnt-copy-protected-wtv-usable-afte...-restore.htmll.
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  9. Originally Posted by usually_quiet View Post
    The cable industry doesn't want customers to use their own equipment, even though they can still charge customers a "digital outlet fee" for a using a TiVo or PC CableCARD tuner that makes it nearly as expensive as a cable box rental.
    Fortunately, we only have to pay $3 a month for an m-card.

    Originally Posted by usually_quiet View Post
    I don't think running WMC in a virtual machine will be useful. From what I recall, encryption is tied to the motherboard as well as the Windows 7 license
    But the O/S in a VM can't see the real motherboard, only the virtual motherboard. That VM motherboard can be the same on every clone. I suspect CPUID in VMWare or VirtualBox returns the true CPUID but I don't think there's any reason why a VM can't be written to return a fixed CPUID. Unless CPUID is a non-virtualizable instruction. I've also noticed that the current VM products notice if you copy the virtual hard drive. One may have to modify the VM around that too.
    Last edited by jagabo; 16th Jul 2012 at 11:32.
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  10. Member
    Join Date: Aug 2006
    Location: United States
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    Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    Originally Posted by usually_quiet View Post
    The cable industry doesn't want customers to use their own equipment, even though they can still charge customers a "digital outlet fee" for a using a TiVo or PC CableCARD tuner that makes it nearly as expensive as a cable box rental.
    Fortunately, we only have to pay $3 a month for an m-card.
    My provider, Comcast, charges a "digital outlet fee" for using a CableCARD, in addition to a fee for the CableCARD itself. So the charges are: $1.50 for the cable card, a $10 digital outlet fee, and a $2.50 credit for customer owned equipment. They charge a $10 digital outlet fee for a cable box, and nothing else. The fees for the first cable box or CableCARD are included in the subscription, so theoretically someone who did not have a cable box and had only a CableCARD tuner might get a little money back.

    Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    Originally Posted by usually_quiet View Post
    I don't think running WMC in a virtual machine will be useful. From what I recall, encryption is tied to the motherboard as well as the Windows 7 license
    But the O/S in a VM can't see the real motherboard, only the virtual motherboard. That VM motherboard can be the same on every clone. I suspect CPUID in VMWare or VirtualBox returns the true CPUID but I don't think there's any reason why a VM can't be written to return a fixed CPUID. Unless CPUID is a non-virtualizable instruction. I've also noticed that the current VM products notice if you copy the virtual hard drive. One may have to modify the VM around that too.
    I have a feeling that Microsoft has something in place to stop that as well, but I guess nobody will know for sure until someone tries.
    Last edited by usually_quiet; 16th Jul 2012 at 11:47.
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