Jon O. on Sun, 30 Jun 2002 08:10:21 +0200 (CEST)

[Date Prev] [Date Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

<nettime> MS DRMOS Palladium -- The Trojan Horse OS

----- Forwarded message -----

Reviewing the Microsoft DRMOS (Palladium Patent) it became apparent
Richard Stallman's short story, The Right to Read is indeed visionary.
Below are quotes from the DRMOS patent and Stallman's Right to Read.

You must read this story:

Although it has been difficult to clearly articulate to the general
computer user, it should now be clear the DMCA represents not only risk to
fair use and other such issues, but represents a tool by which new
technologies such as the DRMOS can be enforced.  It and other new laws
(SSSCA/CBDTPA) are the legal infrustructure required to make the public
use these new DRM technologies and enforce punishment/fines when they are

Content from MS DRMOS Patent quoted under the practice of fair use for
comment and discussion purposes.

The DRMOS Patent can be found here:


The Content Provider (ISP) must maintain a registry of "subscriber
computers". This is the SPA and Central Licensing:

Therefore, the content provider would have to maintain a registry of each
subscriber's DRMOS identity or delegate that function to a trusted third
party. ... Because the basic DRMOS and additional components always have
the same identities when executing on a specific type of processor, the
content provider has only to maintain a list of the identities for the
combinations of the basic DRMOS and additional components that the
provider trusts. Each identity uploaded is then checked against the list.


Soon, changing your PC's system clock could become illegal:

This alternate embodiment requires a secure time source to be available on
the subscriber computer so the user cannot simply turn back the system
clock on the subscriber computer.


Pay-per-use operating system and components:

As described above, components may be valid only until a specified date
and time, and content may also be licensed only until a certain date and
time.  The monotonic counter described earlier can also be used to ensure
that the computer's clock cannot be set backwards to allow the replacement
of a trusted component by an earlier, now untrusted version.


Stallman is right again, DEBUGGING IS NOW ILLEGAL, enforced under Section
1201 of H.R. 2281 (The DMCA):

DRMOS Patent:
An example of one kind of procedure that must be prohibited is loading a 
kernel debugger because it would allow the user to make a copy of the 
content loaded in memory. If the user of the subscriber computer attempts 
to load a kernel debugger into memory, the DRMOS can either 1) refuse 
to load the debugger, or 2) renounce its trusted identity and terminate 
the trusted application that was accessing the content before loading 
the debugger. In the latter case, the memory must also be purged of the 
content before the debugger is loaded. 

See The Right to Read, Stallman:
There were ways, of course, to get around the SPA and Central Licensing. 
They were themselves illegal. Dan had had a classmate in software, 
Frank Martucci, who had obtained an illicit debugging tool, and used 
it to skip over the copyright monitor code when reading books. But he had
told too many friends about it, and one of them turned him in to the SPA 
for a reward (students deep in debt were easily tempted into betrayal). 
In 2047, Frank was in prison, not for pirate reading, but for possessing 
a debugger.  

Dan would later learn that there was a time when anyone could have
debugging tools. There were even free debugging tools available on CD or
downloadable over the net. But ordinary users started using them to bypass
copyright monitors, and eventually a judge ruled that this had become
their principal use in actual practice. This meant they were illegal; the
debuggers' developers were sent to prison.


You can no longer delete specific data from your hard drive:

DRMOS Patent:
For example, the DRMOS can allow the user to delete an entire content file but 
not a portion of it. Another example is that the DRMOS can allow the user to 
terminate all the threads of execution for a trusted application but not just 
a single thread. 


Again, debuggers are not permitted:

DRMOS Patent:
Finally, a DRMOS must protect the trusted application itself from tampering. 
The DRMOS must not allow other processes to attach to the process executing 
the trusted application. When the trusted application is loaded into memory, 
the DRMOS must prevent any other process from reading from, or writing to, 
the sections of memory allocated to the trusted application without the explicit
permission or cooperation of the trusted application.


Users may not share data:

DRMOS Patent:
Such a facility is used when downloaded content can be accessed only by a particular user. Moreover, if downloaded content is to be accessed only by a particular user and by a particular application, the secret to be stored may be divided into parts, with one part protected by an application-specific key and the other part protected by a user-specific key. 

Applied to Stallman's Right to Read. Bear in mind these are e-books and
sharing would be a form of copyright circumvention:

He had to help her--but if he lent her his computer, she might read his
books.  Aside from the fact that you could go to prison for many years for
letting someone else read your books, the very idea shocked him at first.
Like everyone, he had been taught since elementary school that sharing
books was nasty and wrong--something that only pirates would do.

The "Key Vault" and trusted third party (Central Authority):

DRMOS Patent:
Once the data is encrypted using the storage keys, there must be a way to 
recover the keys when the DRMOS identity changes (as when the operating system 
is upgraded to an incompatible version or an unrelated operating system is 
installed) or the computer hardware fails. In the exemplary embodiments 
described here, the keys are stored off-site in a "key vault" provided by a 
trusted third party. In one embodiment, the DRMOS contains the IP addresses 
of the key vault providers and the user decides which to use. In another 
embodiment, the content provider designates a specific key vault and the DRMOS 
enforces the designation. In either embodiment, when the user requests the 
restoration of the storage keys, the key vault provider must perform a certain 
amount of validation before performing the download.


Your computer cannot be used to copy content:

For example, one property might be that the application cannot be used to copy content. Another example of a property is one that specifies that the application can be used to copy content, but only in analog form at 480P resolution. Yet another example of a property is one that specifies that the application can be used to copy content, but only if explicitly allowed by an accompanying license. 


Looks like the MPAA has been engaged in some Retail Politics:

In one embodiment, the access predicate takes the form of a required properties
access control list (ACL) as shown in FIG. 10. The required properties ACL 1000
contains a basic trust level field 1001, which specifies the minimum rights 
management functions that must be provided by any application wishing to process
the content. These minimum functions can be established by a trade association,
such as the MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America), or by the DRMOS 


More Pay-per-view OS functions:

As described briefly above, the license data structure 1100 can limit the number
of times the content can be accessed (usage counter 1101), determine what use 
can be made of the content (derivation rights 1103), such as extracting still 
shots from a video, or building an endless loop recording from an audio file, 
or a time-based expiration counter 1105. 


Pay-per-listen feature:

The sublicense rights 1107 can impose more restrictive rights on re-distributed
content than those specified in a license for content downloaded directly from 
the original content provider. For example, the license 1100 on a song purchased
directly from the music publisher can permit a song to be freely re-played while
the sublicense rights 1107 require a limit on the number of times the same song
can be re-played when redistributed. 




DMCA_Discuss mailing list

----- End forwarded message -----

#  distributed via <nettime>: no commercial use without permission
#  <nettime> is a moderated mailing list for net criticism,
#  collaborative text filtering and cultural politics of the nets
#  more info: and "info nettime-l" in the msg body
#  archive: contact: