Windows 8 should allow WMDRM content to be shared throughout a HomeGroup and/or to other machines when logged in with the same Windows Live ID RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • Windows 8 should allow WMDRM content to be shared throughout a HomeGroup and/or to other machines when logged in with the same Windows Live ID.

    Specifically, WMDRM content (such as CableCard recordings) cannot currently be shared between machines (though they can be exported to dedicated media players), but this is an important use case, especially for portable devices like phones and tablets.  Since Windows 8 itself will be running on tablets now, it is now important to be able to use WMDRM content across machines (or at least be able to export to other machines, not just dedicated media players).

    The best ways to achieve this would be to support both use of WMDRM protected content throughout a HomeGroup as well as across machines with the same Windows Live ID login (now that Windows supports using Windows Live ID for login).

    Example use cases that can be solved with allowing protected content to be used within a HomeGroup and/or via a Windows Live ID:

    - I travel and take 10-20 TV shows with me to view on the plane or while waiting in the airport, so it would be great to be able to view protected recording on my laptop or tablet, not just on the PC that recorded them.

    - I have multiple TVs and PCs in the house and would like to have a central place where shows are recorded but allow them to be viewed on any TV (cable boxes already support this with "Anyroom DVR" and similar brandings).  While the XBox can be used for such purposes, it would be far better to also allow PCs/laptops/tablets.

    - I often record TV shows and don't view them until much later (i.e. I wait until a show looks like it won't be canceled, or I may be really busy at work for a few months), so it would be great to be able to migrate protected recordings to a new PC if I upgrade or if the current one fails.



    • Changed type Derek Piasecki - work Thursday, November 17, 2011 8:05 PM It is a feature request, not a question
    • Edited by Derek Piasecki - work Thursday, November 17, 2011 8:07 PM Changed from question to feature request
    Wednesday, November 16, 2011 10:34 PM

All replies

  • At this point, no one knows whether this will be possible or not; you will have to either wait for Steven Sinofsky to post a blog post on this issue or wait for the beta, which will be more full-featured than the Developer Preview and will contain missing features like Media Center - you should be able to test WMDRM recordings then, if you have the right hardware.

    It is highly unlikely that anyone on the forums will be able to answer your question right now.

    Thursday, November 17, 2011 2:36 AM
  • True, but I suppose this was more of a feature request than a question...   ;-)

    Thursday, November 17, 2011 6:03 PM
  • If so, you should change its type to a discussion. The only "answer" you will get to your question on this forum is the one I have provided. Whenever a moderator answers a question like this, they will say something like "We're sorry, but we don't know what features will be included in the final release." So, as I said before, you will just have to wait.
    Thursday, November 17, 2011 8:03 PM
  • Hello Derek,

    Thanks for starting this discussion. Keep in mind that WMDRM is no longer being actively developed and has been replaced with PlayReady. It is possible to export WMDRM and PlayReady content to a portable device. That said the device must support WMDRM, PlayReady or an approved content protection scheme that has a client side application that supports DRM export. While there are a large number of portable devices that support WMDRM and PlayReady the list is by no means comprehensive.


    In this case you are talking specifically about protected Media Center recorded television content. In this case we must make sure that we represent the content protection mechanism that is required by the original broadcaster. In this instance the broadcaster has flagged the content as "do not copy". Because of this we can stream the content to a Media Center extender but we can't allow the content to be copied to a separate and independent device. This problem is not specific to Microsoft. Other DVR companies have the same problem preventing them to share the content between separate DVR machines. Unfortunately until broadcasters change their positions or start using a more modern DRM scheme there really isn't anything that we can do.

    I hope this helps,


    James Windows Media SDK Technologies Microsoft Developer Services http://blogs.msdn.com/mediasdkstuff/
    Monday, February 6, 2012 6:44 PM
  • Thanks for replying.  I was not referring specifically to WMDRM - I just didn't realize PlayReady was not part of it.

    Previously (and I am not sure whether this is a WMDRM or a PlayReady capability, or both), it was possible to transfer (and typically transcode, though for modern devices it would be preferred to keep it in the original resolution) a protected file to a portable media player.  Now that our "media players" will be running the full version of Windows (i.e. a tablet), we will lose that capability unless we are allowed to transfer files to other full versions of Windows.  This is why broadcasters need to be pushed to allow PlayReady protected files to be tied to the user or group of associated devices (maybe HomeGroup?) rather than a specific device.  I would hope the media companies have finally figured out that making things easy is in their own best interest.




    Monday, February 6, 2012 6:54 PM