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View Full Version : Starforce working on developing protection for Linux



sombertattoo
April 21st, 2009, 10:19 PM
http://www.star-force.com/press_room/news/index.php?news=2404

This terrifies me. Sure some may argue that it may get some game developers interested in Linux seeing as it could have copy protection, history has shown no/minimal copy protection leads to BETTER sales.

Passing the word

SunnyRabbiera
April 21st, 2009, 11:36 PM
Well its not like its going to be standardized.
But this is actually sort of a good thing, usually to big names linux is bad because it offers no protection for their proprietary products like Microsoft can offer (heck Microsoft purposely hides everything in the first place not like it helps though).
In linux there is no way to hide, one can easily reverse engineer something like flash or a proprietary driver if one knows how and this scares the living crap out of those who want to "protect" their stuff like some sort of spoiled rich kid.

ELD
April 22nd, 2009, 12:17 AM
If it brings more games to the table then awesome, i don't give a rats bottom aobut copy protection as long as i can play my legally purchased games.

If it isn't too intrusive then who the hell cares, seriously of all the games i've purchased in the past two years, i have never had a problem.

Mehall
April 22nd, 2009, 12:28 AM
If it brings more games to the table then awesome, i don't give a rats bottom aobut copy protection as long as i can play my legally purchased games.

If it isn't too intrusive then who the hell cares, seriously of all the games i've purchased in the past two years, i have never had a problem.

You clearly didn't buy Spore.

There are people who legally bought Spore, then torrented it so they had a legal copy, but didn;t have to deal with the DRM.

ELD
April 22nd, 2009, 12:41 AM
You clearly didn't buy Spore.

There are people who legally bought Spore, then torrented it so they had a legal copy, but didn;t have to deal with the DRM.

The girlfriend has it, shes never had a problem :\

Icehuck
April 22nd, 2009, 12:42 AM
If it isn't too intrusive then who the hell cares, seriously of all the games i've purchased in the past two years, i have never had a problem.

You do know that Starforce has been known to install hidden drivers and disable devices without user consent right?

The editor of PC Gamer said,


I'm okay with that in theory, but some of these anti-piracy software programs are so potent that they cause issues for legitimate game buyers. One of the leading brands, StarForce, is notorious for not only making it difficult for a small percentage of legitimate users to load up StarForce-protected games, but also for leaving potentially problem-causing StarForce software behind on your PC, even after you've deleted the game it was protecting. And this isn't just some story that I've read about online or in emails from readers. No, it happened to me.

Last year, my work PC suddenly began blue-screening (crashing) any time I popped an audio CD into either of my two optical drives. I went online and learned that other people were having this problem and that it appeared to be StarForce-related. Deleting my StarForce-protected games did nothing. I had to run a StarForce-removal utility before my system - filled only with legal, licensed software - could play audio CDs again.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/StarForce

Mehall
April 22nd, 2009, 12:43 AM
The girlfriend has it, shes never had a problem :\

Lucky.

Besides the DRM, EA Nerfing Spore from what Will Wright designed is the reason why I will never give them my money again. DLs or second-hand games at best.

The DRM provided by Steam, however, is manageable, and I hope VALVe get into gear porting it, as Steam is DRM all of it's own, so that would satisfy plenty of games devs.

days_of_ruin
April 22nd, 2009, 12:53 AM
http://www.star-force.com/press_room/news/index.php?news=2404

This terrifies me. Sure some may argue that it may get some game developers interested in Linux seeing as it could have copy protection, history has shown no/minimal copy protection leads to BETTER sales.

Passing the word

http://arstechnica.com/gaming/news/2009/04/demigod-hit-by-massive-piracy-review-scores-take-beating.ars

blastus
April 22nd, 2009, 12:53 AM
I wrote:

This is antithetical to free and open source software upon which Linux is built. I would never install a product on Linux that claimed to offer copy-protection. Such technology would have to run far and deep into the system, necessarily violate various standards, and open doors to security vulnerabilities. Unless you release the source code there is no way one can verify that your software does not behave like a rootkit; opens random ports, sends undisclosed data to unknown parties, contains various security vulnerabilities etc... No-one wants a replay of Sony's Window's rootkit on Linux so NO THANKS, your technology will never be installed on any of my Linux boxes.

Firestem4
April 22nd, 2009, 01:16 AM
You clearly didn't buy Spore.

There are people who legally bought Spore, then torrented it so they had a legal copy, but didn;t have to deal with the DRM.

I bought spore the day it came out. the Special Edition actually. the DRM infuriated me when I found out.

On principal I don't have a problem with content-owners seeking to protect their IP. But the way it is abused in the industry is horrible.

But, this severely intrudes upon the Openness and Freedom that Linux is built upon. Something which many of us, if not all value and hold dearly in a world where we have so little left to ourselves. Legally or not.

Edit: I should have just quoted the above quoted statement as it reflects my views perfectly. +1 to that.

FuturePilot
April 22nd, 2009, 01:24 AM
i wrote:

+1

Mehall
April 22nd, 2009, 01:26 AM
I bought spore the day it came out. the Special Edition actually. the DRM infuriated me when I found out.

On principal I don't have a problem with content-owners seeking to protect their IP. But the way it is abused in the industry is horrible.

But, this severely intrudes upon the Openness and Freedom that Linux is built upon. Something which many of us, if not all value and hold dearly in a world where we have so little left to ourselves. Legally or not.

Edit: I should have just quoted the above quoted statement as it reflects my views perfectly. +1 to that.

The thing is, you can choose not to use these Proprietary things if and when they are released.

Many Linux users use it because it is a better OS for their main needs, not because it's Open Source. I happen to fall into BOTH categories.

Mr. Picklesworth
April 22nd, 2009, 02:25 AM
They will have to do this without damaging the operating system, because in this case they can't lobby a caring monopolist to let them install intrusive, rootkit-esque crap. With that in mind, it should turn out fairly well. The people at Starforce may experience an epiphany.

CarpKing
April 22nd, 2009, 03:00 AM
What kind of DRM did Spore use? All I had to do was enter the code on the box and I haven't had to put the CD in since. It even worked on Linux before I gave up on my NVidia card. Maybe it's because I didn't try to use the online features of either installation?

MikeTheC
April 22nd, 2009, 03:15 AM
Their stuff will never find its way onto my system, thank you very much. Then again, unless they decide to start "protecting" what few F/OSS games I play -- and you'll note my subtle use of irony here -- it's unlikely to ever be a problem.

3rdalbum
April 22nd, 2009, 04:13 AM
I get edgy about DRM/copy-protection vendors as there are a few of them around who do hide rootkits in their software.

Linux users have an easy option though: Run the game inside a virtual machine. That way, any rootkits will only be able to root the guest OS, not the host.

Icehuck
April 22nd, 2009, 04:21 AM
They will have to do this without damaging the operating system, because in this case they can't lobby a caring monopolist to let them install intrusive, rootkit-esque crap. With that in mind, it should turn out fairly well. The people at Starforce may experience an epiphany.

The only thing stopping them from doing it would be the user not buying the game. You put the game in the drive and it installs with the game installation. Who do they have to lobby to do that? No one

ELD
April 22nd, 2009, 09:56 AM
The thing is, you can choose not to use these Proprietary things if and when they are released.

Many Linux users use it because it is a better OS for their main needs, not because it's Open Source. I happen to fall into BOTH categories.

That is me, i don't care that everything has to be open.

And i have had a thought, why would they work on copy protection for Linux if nothing is going to be available for it, looks like we could have some games on the way.

halovivek
April 22nd, 2009, 10:22 AM
This is really bad :(

k2t0f12d
April 22nd, 2009, 11:18 AM
The only thing stopping them from doing it would be the user not buying the game. You put the game in the drive and it installs with the game installation. Who do they have to lobby to do that? No oneWhat he meant was that the copy-restriction racket requires some complicity and special access from the operating system vendor to make their ball and chain effective. It isn't as simple as "just being on the disc." You can convince a sympathetic corporate entity like Microsoft to pervert their OS for DRM, but there is no authority with which to bargain over the corruption of GNU+Linux in the free software world.

SunnyRabbiera
April 22nd, 2009, 12:45 PM
Lucky.

Besides the DRM, EA Nerfing Spore from what Will Wright designed is the reason why I will never give them my money again. DLs or second-hand games at best.

The DRM provided by Steam, however, is manageable, and I hope VALVe get into gear porting it, as Steam is DRM all of it's own, so that would satisfy plenty of games devs.

Steam almost feels like DRM done right, though its still quite nasty in many respects.

ELD
April 22nd, 2009, 12:46 PM
Steam almost feels like DRM done right, though its still quite nasty in many respects.

Care to elaborate?

SunnyRabbiera
April 22nd, 2009, 12:49 PM
Care to elaborate?

Well for most its more managable then most DRM centered clients, but the auto updating without consent and steam sending out reports without knowledge is where it shares in common with other DRM tools.

ELD
April 22nd, 2009, 12:50 PM
Are you talking about the steam client or the games updating without consent?

And steam has a check box to send out stats, i disabled it.

I personally see nothing wrong with steam, i think it is a great platform.

SunnyRabbiera
April 22nd, 2009, 12:52 PM
Are you talking about the steam client or the games updating without consent?

And steam has a check box to send out stats, i disabled it.

I personally see nothing wrong with steam, i think it is a great platform.


I guess sort of both, and yes I am aware it offers the option to turn off sending out stats something you dont see on other DRM like systems.

ELD
April 22nd, 2009, 12:54 PM
Well your nitpicking basically since one can be turned off.

And as for updating steam updates itself which i like rather than to have an out of date version and the client itself is tiny anyway.

As for games it usually asks me.

So your arguments seem invalid to me.

SunnyRabbiera
April 22nd, 2009, 12:58 PM
Well your nitpicking basically since one can be turned off.

And as for updating steam updates itself which i like rather than to have an out of date version and the client itself is tiny anyway.

As for games it usually asks me.

So your arguments seem invalid to me.

Yes I am nitpicking, but overall it is better then most DRM clients I have seen.
I am not arguing, but I see why many could distrust it.
I think all DRM like clients should work like steam, offer the big companies "protection" but offer the end user to turn on and off certain features.

DJiNN
April 22nd, 2009, 01:09 PM
Steam almost feels like DRM done right, though its still quite nasty in many respects.

I bought "Half Life 2 - Orange Box", installed it, and did the whole Steam Account thing...... & i have to say it's absolutely "AWFUL!!" (Steam that is, NOT HL2!) :)

It made the game really cumbersome and slow, and often it wouldn't load at all! It also insists on updating itself all the time, and it's very slow at doing so.

In the end i downloaded a "Non Steam" version and installed that instead..... works really well, very fast, and is a joy to play, which is how it should be.

Copy protection is one thing, but when you're forced to install something that actually makes your system run slower (amongst other things) just to be able to play the game...>!!! Nuff said!

Chame_Wizard
April 22nd, 2009, 01:42 PM
starforce on my Kubuntu?NEVER EVER

ELD
April 22nd, 2009, 02:30 PM
I bought "Half Life 2 - Orange Box", installed it, and did the whole Steam Account thing...... & i have to say it's absolutely "AWFUL!!" (Steam that is, NOT HL2!) :)

It made the game really cumbersome and slow, and often it wouldn't load at all! It also insists on updating itself all the time, and it's very slow at doing so.

In the end i downloaded a "Non Steam" version and installed that instead..... works really well, very fast, and is a joy to play, which is how it should be.

Copy protection is one thing, but when you're forced to install something that actually makes your system run slower (amongst other things) just to be able to play the game...>!!! Nuff said!

Well no offence but you must have a slow system then.

Even my dads original dual core pentium can run steam and day of defeat together fine.

Methuselah
April 22nd, 2009, 02:48 PM
Some people believe Starforce messed up their DVD writers.
DRM software is some of the most intrusive proprietary software than can go on any system.
My understanding is that Starforce was essentially a rootkit that did not remove itself when you removed the game.

Kareeser
April 22nd, 2009, 03:31 PM
Copy protection is one thing, but when you're forced to install something that actually makes your system run slower (amongst other things) just to be able to play the game...>!!! Nuff said!

For the most part, Steam doesn't intrude into your game. However, an unexplainable small subset of users find performance problem with Steam. Unfortunate, but not unheard of. It may be a hardware problem, since I experience no slowdown whatsoever.

I also like the Steam's method of copy protection. It's unobtrusive and is only there to protect the interests of the game developers. However, all the work is done server-side, and MY property is left alone, which is the most important part.

I also don't mind letting Steam servers have physical ownership of my game. If they fold, then that might be a problem, but I don't see that happenning in the future.

...

Plus $10 for HL, CS, TFC, and DoD is quite cheap :)

3Miro
April 22nd, 2009, 04:18 PM
securom already works under wine (at least some versions do).

"Protection" under windows is fake, all the games are cracked and available for illegal download, "security" only harms the people the get the games legally.

I have a friend who always cracks his games just because he doesn't want to mess with changing the CDs. I currently have no games on my laptop, but if I put any, I will make sure to crack them since I don't want to carry the CDs with me when I travel.

k2t0f12d
April 22nd, 2009, 07:19 PM
"Protection" under windows is fake, all the games are cracked and available for illegal download, "security" only harms the people the get the games legally.++

Hyper Tails
April 22nd, 2009, 07:31 PM
oh cool that make more games and protection software available for linux

Awesome!!

sombertattoo
April 23rd, 2009, 02:58 AM
My thoughts on this are as follows.

Starforce for Linux will have to be nowhere near as damaging as it is in Windows for me to even consider using it.

Yes this *may* lead to a few copy protected Linux games. But few game developers these days would even consider Starforce. There's too much of a negative connotation pasted all over it.

What would copy protection in Linux face? It's completely opposite to FOSS. Arguably some don't choose Linux just because it's open source. But many leave Windows leave because of the proprietary/corporate nature of it so a return to that sort of practise in Linux would outrage them.

I'm of course all for game developers protecting their rights and property and earning money for their work. In order for me to even consider paying for a legal copy of a game, it has to display a value to me.

Take Starcraft for example. Anyone can get an illegal copy of the game. Without paying, the consumer can get the single player campaigns, and offline LAN play. With paying though, the consumer gets access to the hugely popular Battle.Net. So there is a definitive value with paying for a legal copy of starcraft. A consumer gets added features and still doesn't face draconian copy protection. The only copy protection is a CD-key. And most people can recognize that Starcraft hasn't exactly been a slouch sales wise....

Take another game for example. Digial Combat Simulator: Black Shark. Released in Russia initially, it's a highly complex and advanced helicopter simulator. I've played it and it's a real gem. Now, what do you get for paying? Everything the game includes and you also get Starforce with all it's pitfalls and caveats. What do you get for not paying and hacking the game to bypass Starforce? You get much better value because you are avoiding the outright dangerous Starforce copy protection and the unknown changes it can do to your system. The Russian version of the game with Starforce was hacked within days of release. The international version was immediately upgraded to a much heftier and more invasive version of Starforce and in doing so, outraged many many users.

It's a simple choice for legal vs illegal copies of game. People will chose the higher value choice. If you add features into the legal version that people deem valuable, people will happily buy it. If you attempt to sell a game with copy protection that people believe will damage their gaming experience, they won't buy it and will try to steal it. You have to make the legal version of any game appealing rather than just from a do-good standpoint.

sloggerkhan
April 23rd, 2009, 03:05 AM
I voted against it. I bought a $5 game off the internet (one of those download old games sites) to play under wine for the nostalgia factor (it's from early 90s), but the place had added starforce protection (which I hadn't realized) so I just ended up torrenting a hacked exe anyhow (which works perfect with wine).