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Old 25th January 2022, 06:42   #1  |  Link
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ARccOS copy protection in 2019?

Hi guys,

Haven't posted on this forum in years, but I thought this would be the place to ask.

Seemingly sometime around 2011-2012, I assume because Blu-ray started to take over and companies put all their resources into AACS protection instead of DVDs, most major movie studios stopped putting draconean anti-ripping measures on their DVDs, and went back to simple CSS/CPPM only. This includes some of the "big guys" like Disney who were using Macrovision's "RipGuard" system - it got worse and worse and some of my 2010-2011 Disney DVDs will completely crash DVD Decrypter when it gets to one of the IFOs - it also crashes that RipIt4Me program from 2007, after spitting out some lines about there being nearly *30,000* PGC's linked to those IFOs. At the worst point, they were making titles 2-7 all filled with 30k fake titles, and then the real programs would be title 1 and 8+.

But sometime late 2011, that just...stopped. You could start ripping Disney DVDs again with nothing but basic DVD Decrypter and it would work 100%.

Sony used to have their own ARccOS system too (I honestly didn't realize "RipGuard" was something separate, since it behaved the same way and would throw a ton of I/O errors if it didn't just outright crash programs), and this too seemed to dry up sometime in that era as well.

So naturally I haven't had any trouble ripping a DVD in almost a decade.

But I just came across some DVDs, published in 2019 by PBS, which use ARccOS, or something like it.

Trusty RipIt4Me was detecting something like 6,000 bad sectors, and it took about 5 hours with DVD Decrypter to make an ISO because it stalled at 98% going about 3KB/sec with every other sector being a dummy one.

What's strange, though, is that A. to my knowledge no major studio has used anything fancy besides CSS/RCE since 2012 and B. this is PBS, not Sony.

A Google search for "pbs arccos" led me to this forum post from 2005 where somebody got PBS DVDs published by Sony, but...that's 17 years old now, and would have been at the very beginning of ARccOS protection.

has anyone else seen any commercially released DVDs in the past decade that have had fancy anti-ripping protection? Because this is a shock to me. It's freaking PBS of all things! I have several other sets from them, also from around the same time (2018-2019) that have nothing but CSS! I even tried two copies of the same DVD to be sure it wasn't just a scratched disc, with the second copy being mint condition and zero scratches, still exhibits the same behavior.

To make matters more frustrating, despite the "successful" rip with RipIt4Me+DVD Decrypter, when I mount the ISO file and attempt to open the VOBs, they're all blocky, just like a failed deCSS operation. Even if I then re-rip that mounted ISO, I get an identical file (with the same checksum) with the same issue.

Trusty AnyDVD works fine on it, but I'm kind of curious what's going on here. It's such a weird anomaly, takes me back to my high school ripping days of 2007-2008 where I actually ran into this stuff regularly. (Also for some reason AnyDVD alters the volume label? It doesn't normally)

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Old 25th January 2022, 10:07   #2  |  Link
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Have you tried MakeMKV [current version v1.16.5] in 'Backup' mode?
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Old 25th January 2022, 12:28   #3  |  Link
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Lionsgate does

they have continued to evolve their copy protection. and just discovered the studio that produced The Komisky Method has newer protection.
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Old 25th January 2022, 22:25   #4  |  Link
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Originally Posted by SeeMoreDigital View Post
Have you tried MakeMKV [current version v1.16.5] in 'Backup' mode?
I have MakeMKV installed, and I noticed it does that "LibreDrive" thing when I open it, but I saw no option to rip an ISO file, it wanted to try to do its own re-encoding of the disc so I gave up on it.

AnyDVD works just fine - that wasn't really my concern - I just thought it was incredibly curious that like 7 years after MOST copyright holders stopped using draconean rip-protection schemes, that a set of DVDs would come out with something like that.

Originally Posted by ojdidit View Post
they have continued to evolve their copy protection. and just discovered the studio that produced The Komisky Method has newer protection.
Who is "they", Sony?

Macrovision seems to have dropped off the face of the Earth. They renamed themselves to Rovi, and Googling "ripguard" I found some stuff from those "we will author your DVDs for you for money" companies about paying royalties to Rovi, but otherwise I haven't seen it used in many years.

I literally just got out my DVDs and checked, the only Disney discs that have RipGuard post-2011 are the ones that were re-issues of (2006-2010?) discs. All the ones included with the Blu-ray combo packs, and other subsequent releases, went back to just plain old CSS.

I would assume, because of programs like AnyDVD and all the other Chinese Engrish-laden ripping programs out there, that companies just stopped paying extra to get some late 2000s copy protection scheme that ultimately is easily defeated anyway.

A Google search says that The Kominsky Method is a Netflix show - I'm not sure who makes their DVDs but I'm incredibly curious now. The only two types of copy protection I am aware of (besides CSS encryption) are those two I've mentioned, Macrovision RipGuard and ARccOS. Some DVD ripping sites talk about "Disney X-Protect" but that isn't a real thing; Disney used RipGuard.

Last edited by drfsupercenter; 25th January 2022 at 22:28.
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Old 26th January 2022, 08:04   #5  |  Link
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I believe all of these protection schemes like RipGuard and ARccOS worked by embedding unreadable disc sectors in the middle of the VOB files. Players would skip over the unreadable sectors but copy programs would get stuck trying to read the bad sectors.

If I recall, the solution DVD Decrypter tried to use was to have some sort of database listing where the bad sectors were located on all the popular discs. Since DVD Decrypter hasn't been updated in years, I would guess that its database is rather out of date.

The more modern way to handle these protection schemes, as used by rippers such as AnyDVD, is to parse the playback commands and figure out which sectors are never played. Then, they just skip over those sectors and save them out as filler data.
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Old 26th January 2022, 13:21   #6  |  Link
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"they" is Lionsgate, as stated.
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Old 10th June 2023, 09:23   #7  |  Link
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Any news about those nasty copy protection methods in 2023?
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