Apple ‘strengthens’ music-sharing feature in iTunes 4.5

“Among other additions Apple Computer made to its iTunes software, the Mac maker has plugged a hole that allowed some people to download music from another computer. Apple’s iTunes allows Macintosh and PC users to play music stored on other PCs on a network. The music is streamed off the other computer. But file-swapping enthusiasts quickly created other programs, such as MyTunes, to capture the songs and allow them to be saved to the computer’s hard drive,” Ina Fried reports for ZDNet.

“With the latest iteration–version 4.5–Apple appears to have plugged that hole. An Apple representative on Wednesday confirmed that with the new version of iTunes, the company has ‘strengthened’ the music-sharing feature to make sure that song sharing is limited to personal use and that only another copy of iTunes can access the music stream,’ Fried reports. “Also, once iTunes users have upgraded to the newest version of the software, they are no longer allowed to stream music from computers running older versions of iTunes.”

Full article here.

13 Comments

  1. Hmmm… interesting…. Will you still be able to use apps such as dltunes in conjuntion with a terminal window to suck music from another person’s computer over the internet? Not that I condone piracy though!

  2. Hmmm, would have been nice for Apple to have been honest about that one up front. gonna have to start reading the small print in future – Apple is starting to get shifty.

  3. Only problem is this tighter DRM has also caused problems with legit programs. For example, I cannot get Toast 6 (which supports CD text unlike iTunes) to burn audio CDs any longer using songs purchased from the iTMS. 🙁

  4. iTunes 4.5 closes the hole allowing third party apps to stream music over the net for “suckers” and now allows up to five authorized computers and only 7 cd playlist burns.

    Also iTunes 4.5 closes the hole for programs such as Playfair, which allowed wholesale stripping of “Fairplay” off of iTMS bought music. No more ACC w/Fairplay to ACC conversions.

    Pre-stripped music still plays on iTunes, but just by visiting iTMS with todays iTunes version closes the hole as well. So don’t think you can use a older iTunes, visit iTMS and continue using Playfair. (that was a really slick move Apple)

    It was fun while it lasted folks,

    As always buy your music and support the artists. I wish there was a way around the labels, it seems their business model that they are desperately trying to keep afloat is the root of the problem.

    Maybe old SJ has a solution for that, but he has to take over first.

    iTunes Europe!!!

  5. John:

    How is it ‘shifty’ of Apple to stop third-party software from effectively negating Apple’s DRM model in contravention of the law.

    Are businesses which have intruder detect and alarm systems being ‘shifty’ by installing them, or is it the would-be burglar/bank robber who is the problem?

    You can play the music on up to five computers! You can burn a given playlist up to seven times before you have to change it! Why do you need this ‘unofficial’ functionality to record shared streams anyway?

  6. iTunes 4.5 is perfect.
    All the things I wanted to have are there except the iTunes Music Store Europe.
    I wonder if it is iTunes 5.0 then when I will get all the goodies working.
    Few more months to go.
    Then again one BIG and IMPORTANT thing is still missing = Surround Sound
    I need a fix for that.

  7. Apple are going to repair my iPod mini under warranty. I honestly thought they would say I would have to send it back to The States, but they apparently have a mini repair shop in Holland already, and are sending any European repairs there.

    That’s the reason for your iPod mini shortage in America. Too many Europeans are going over and taking advantage of the cheap dollar.

    That’s put me in a really good mood. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”grin” style=”border:0;” />

  8. >So I’m wondering if Audio Hijack would still work?

    That’s too much work, you lose the tags and artwork.

    Using a Mac with iTunes that hasn’t connected to iTMS and Playfair works, the free music giveaway is to get people to visit iTMS and get the “hole” patched.

    Plus you have to agree to a new terms for using iTMS, so your account and credit card all get tied together with that.

    Question is if pre-stripped iTMS music leaves some sort of “residue” that iTunes 4.5 can either by itself or through shared playlists via iMix and tell Apple you violated the terms and if Apple has the balls to sue thier own customers.

    I don’t think they will go that far, but just protecting themselves from the RIAA and let them play the bad guy. Leaving detection and enforrcement to them.

    Of course I’m not worried, I have iTMS/credit card/CD’s for all the music on my computers and the new 5 computer limit really helps accept the DRM better.

    Then there is Carbon Copy Cloner and external firewire drives which one should always have a copy of their hard drive anyway.

    The DRM Apple is pushing is to primarily stop wholesale distribution of songs all over the net, it’s not designed to hamper one’s use of the music.

    I think Apple is doing a pretty good job balancing the wants of the labels and of it’s customers. Apple is very customer oriented, Microsoft and Napster care less about their customers and be charging $2 a song rent by now, I already know their software reports upon their music collection.

  9. I fail to see the need for software that allows you to download streaming files through a network… i mean, if you HAVE to, you could just get the person to send the files to you through rendezvous.. i mean, hole, schmole… if someone is logged onto the network and able to stream the files, you could run over to their computer and drag and drop the files yourself… well… kekekeke.

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