I meant to discuss this on yesterday’s podcast, but forgot. There’s been a new round of news this week about AACS potentially being “fixed“, and other stories saying that it’s been “rebroken” – in fact, it is neither.
Here’s the gist. WinDVD rolled out an update which they said was required in order to play future discs. This of course implies that the device key for WinDVD has been revoked, and that future discs won’t be able to be decoded without a new key. That’s all well and good – it’s exactly what was predicted.
The AACS group did a stupid press release saying that they’d fixed the problem. Of course, all they’ve done is made it so the folks looking to crack the discs will have to dig around for another device or processing key.
The Volume ID hack that is somehow being tied up in this whole story is in fact mostly unrelated. Prior to this hack, folks were having to go through a few annoying machinations to obtain a volume ID, as it’s not directly readable from the disc through typical means. The volume ID, in combination with the device key or processing key is required to decrypt a disc.
So, when new discs appear which revoke WinDVD’s device key, the processing key will stop working as well, and having the volume ID won’t do any good. The VID hack is still important, at least until they figure out a way to force a new firmware to the Xbox HDDVD drives, but it doesn’t negate the key revocation.