Microsoft to shut down PlaysForSure DRM services, strand customers to existing PCs

“Customers who have purchased music from Microsoft’s now-defunct MSN Music store are now facing a decision they never anticipated making: commit to which computers (and OS) they want to authorize forever, or give up access to the music they paid for. Why? Because Microsoft has decided that it’s done supporting the service and will be turning off the MSN Music license servers by the end of this summer,” Jacqui Cheng reports for Ars Technica.

Cheng reports, “MSN Entertainment and Video Services general manager Rob Bennett sent out an e-mail this afternoon to customers, advising them to make any and all authorizations or deauthorizations before August 31. ‘As of August 31, 2008, we will no longer be able to support the retrieval of license keys for the songs you purchased from MSN Music or the authorization of additional computers,’ reads the e-mail seen by Ars. ‘You will need to obtain a license key for each of your songs downloaded from MSN Music on any new computer, and you must do so before August 31, 2008. If you attempt to transfer your songs to additional computers after August 31, 2008, those songs will not successfully play.'”

Cheng reports, “This doesn’t just apply to the five different computers that PlaysForSure allows users to authorize, it also applies to operating systems on the same machine (users need to reauthorize a machine after they upgrade from Windows XP to Windows Vista, for example). Once September rolls around, users are committed to whatever five machines they may have authorized—along with whatever OS they are running. “

Full article here.

Microsoft treating their suckers customers like garbage is par for the course.

This’ll inspire even more consumer confidence in Microsoft’s Zune fiasco. Use those “points” while you’ve got ’em, ya hear?

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Follower” for the heads up.]


  1. OK, now tell me again why subscription services are better than owning a song?

    And before you get off on the rant of “Well iTMS songs still have to be authorized” the difference is that if Apple ever decided to shut down they can flip a bit and unlock the songs permanently. PlaysForSure never had support for that.

  2. Hmmmmm,

    The article also says, “Of course, MSN Music customers do have one other option: burning all of their music to audio CD and then re-ripping them back to the computer as MP3s, sans DRM. But that’s a lossy, lousy solution.”

    I wonder, does MS playsforcrap really allow you to burn CDs??? I thought it was not allowed. Info is appreciated.


  3. @Buster,
    I’m doubting Zune Tang will reply at all on this thread. He only seems to respond to stuff he can use to Big-Up Microsoft!

    I used to believe he was a Mac fan that was having a laugh but nowadays I am not so sure he isn’t a genuine ‘doze fanboi…

    Time will tell (or maybe not)

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