StarForce Has Gone Way Too Far!

First we have SafeDisc outright blacklisting our software like CloneCD and some hardware as well. Now look at this! We have StarForce installing sneaky little drivers and controllers (read: hijacking) on our PC’s. Am I just anal or am I justified in feeling very angry and violated by this secret installing of sh** on my PC.

I mean I installed ToCa - Race Driver 2, and that’s all I wanted or agreed to install and I get to looking around and find this crap in my device manager! I say this is too much and crosses WAY over the line. I wonder if it even gets removed when I uninstall the game. :frowning:

I am sorry, but I share your angered comapssion towards StarForce and all other Copy Protection software.

I have confirmed that uninstalling the scumware POS game (ToCa - Race Driver 2) that put the StarForce on my PC DOES NOT cause the StarForce “drivers” to be uninstalled. I then uninstalled them myself from Device Manager…they came right back after 2 reboots. This is a virus in my book.

This deserves LOTS of media attention… (wicked evil grin)
I consider this Spyware rather than a virus.

Run the file from the following link, then remove by hand in device manager.
I think it’s enough to remove that …V6 File.
http://www.adventurecompanygames.com/tac/support/media/StarforceClean.exe

The problem with this will not end at a near future. With a lot of games having SF, and the high improvement rate of SF, that horrible drivers will increase with every game that includes that. At the beginning, there were just one “driver” loaded, but now, to avoid workarounds like the lan “bug” or the Wm9 one, it is getting necessary to install new countermeasures, and SF do it by the worst way we could think. Because the only way to force Windows to do something correctly is by installing at kernell level, Sf knows it and implements at this level.
There is two “problems” with this:

First, SF is “repairing” Windows bugs at no cost, so windows becomes harder to “trick”
Secondly, in the future that could make another copyprotections like SD or SecuROM get installed by the same way, or what is worst, that people could use that drivers in its own benefit. By this i’m saying, that SF could sell its access system to third companys, so another programs, copyprotection or not (DRM variants for AUDIO) could get harder to beat, by using SF “technology”.

Well, things are not progressing so well for customers.

good luck!

Not to mention Safedisc’s driver which comes preinstalled with Win2k/XP ! (see the secdrv.inf on your Windows CD ? it is called from syssetup.inf during install… )

This is all part of the starforce protection, i use that nifty tool which removes all that crap.

Why cant StarForce put crap there, i mean you did agree to the EULA and shit?

l8er

Is it not possible to use Softice to reverse enegeer the SF3 drivers ?
or is Softice debugger totaly useless for this SF3 ?

Thanks a lot Terramex nice tool removed mine :slight_smile:

@Cobrar

SF uses a lot of tricks to avoid any debugger to work. The most important are the DX tricks that makes SF to capture the int1 & int3. Because any debugger is based to work using that, if SF appropiates it, then any debugger is useless, even Sice or SoftIce, as known everywhere. It is not like another debugguer “blacklisting”, it is an all in one debugger killing. Anyway, the SF drivers can be cleaned in order to use Sice, but we have still problems about its VM. The actual way of working ( the way i know from some people) is by hooking the VM movements or jumps, and logging them. Anyway, we still need to study not just the jumps, but the code generating too. SF scrambles all the main executable to get it work with its own routines, so it is not as easy as other protections like SecuROM or Safedisc.

Good luck!

Nobody wants to hear that…

glad to hear there is a workaround so that sice works :slight_smile:
you seem to know a lot about it is there an spanish forum that talks about reverse enigering the SF :Z protection ?

Well I started off with the best CD/DVD website there is. FrontPage News

Wow that is an informative article Womble.:slight_smile:

BT Elvis gets all of the credit for bringing it up on the forum. I just submitted to the news people.

BTW. Happy Birthday Sir Cyber

Yes of course, good job BT Elvis.:slight_smile:

Thanks muchly:bigsmile:

No worries

Black Mirror uses a copy protection system provided by
StarForce. On Windows98SE, I encountered two severe
problems, both of them related to some device drivers that
were installed by the StarForce copy protection software:

Uninstalling the game does NOT remove the StarForce drivers;
this is completely unacceptable behaviour. I have complained
to Dreamcatcher and demanded that they provide me with
facilities to remove the drivers. Dreamcatcher has since
sent me a program called “sfclean.exe” that appears to remove
them.

The StarForce device drivers conflicted with the device
drivers for my USB memory drive, and caused my machine to
crash (BSOD) whenever I plugged in my memory drive. This
problem has not yet been resolved by Dreamcatcher.

Contact Dreamcatcher if you have uninstalled your game, and
find any of these files remaining on your disk: prosync1.vxd,
prosync1.sys, sfhlp01.sys, prohlp02.sys, prodrv06.sys

Black Mirror nicely provided an in-game gamma setting, but it
turned out to be problematic. Even with brightness turned up
all the way, my monitor is very dark and requires a
substantial gamma correction for most games. The in-game
gamma setting didn’t provide enough range, but it completely
overrides the video card setting. As a result, I was forced
to play the game with all the lights turned off, and my video
card “vibrancy control” turned up.

Intresting. Some good info you found there Cyber