Media Player 9 - how to move DRM'd music from library to CD

Hi folks,

One of the readers of my newsletter has written in with a good question for me. Since I typically never use any software or media with DRM’s, I’m at a loss to answer. Now I come here to see if you may have a ready answer. Thanks in advance.

Ian wrote:

Hi Clif, I am having trouble with MS,s MP9, and I am wondering if anyone has an relatively easy solution. I have about a dozen cd’s in the mp and I want to burn them onto new disc’s and free up some space. But MS won’t let me do anything with them. It’s now at the point where I can’t even play any music on my computer. I have looked on the net and anything I read sounds like I’m probably going to screw up even more than I already have. I would really appreciate any help you or your readers may have.

I had this problem once and it cured me of using Windows Media Player.
Essentially Windows embeds DRM in any files you rip unless you tell it otherwise.
That is the licensing feature that Micorsoft touts to the RIAA guys.
In Media Player 9 it can be turned off.
In Media Player choose Options from the Tools Menu.
Click the Copy Music tab.
Remove any check mark from the box marked Protect Content.
This will stop Media Player from doing this in the future but it won’t help with the CDs he has ripped to the hard drive now.
If he’s running XP or 2000 introduce him to Songbird which will play gather and play protected wma files :

What he does with them once Songbird plays them is his business.

Hi Diskwatcher,

Thanks for the advice. I also avoid WMP whenever possible. Just to clarify, are you saying that you think he may be able to use Songbird to burn the songs to a CD?

Would this be a simple function of Songbird or does it require some type of work-around procedure? I haven’t tried Songbird yet. Last I heard, it still needed some work.


There are several tools that will remove the digital rights management of a file, but unfortunately they are all illegal products. Google may be your friend.

It is not illegal to play a drm-enabled song. It may be illegal to re-record the song while playing it (analog-out -> analog-in) but it seems that the newly recorded file does not have any sort of drm. :slight_smile:

It’s still in beta but since your guy wants to avoid 3rd party software it’s his best shot at getting his music back.