Feeds

Microsoft blocks cloners' from streaming media format

So there goes your air supply...

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Microsoft has warned open source developers off using its ASF streaming media format.

The author of VirtualDub, an open source video capture and editing package which reverse engineered the ASF format, has dropped ASF support after a call from Microsoft's Windows Media group.

Avery Lee, the author of Virtual Dub, says he received "a polite phone call from a fellow at Microsoft who works in the Windows Media group. He informed me that Microsoft has intellectual property rights on the ASF format and told me that, although I had reverse engineered it, the implementation was still illegal since it infringed on Microsoft patents."

Lee has little option but to comply. "At his request, and much to my own sadness, I have removed support for ASF in VirtualDub 1.3d, since I cannot risk a legal confrontation. This unfortunately means that I can no longer redistribute versions of VirtualDub older than V1.3d." Lee consequently urges other coders not to encode to the ASF format.

ASF is indeed currently the intellectual property of Microsoft, one of a clutch of posthumous - and highly contested - patents the company has been filing since the new year. United States Patent 6,041,345 was granted on March 21 this year.

Carlos Morgado, editor of Gildot, the Portuguese Slashdot-style community, described it as "one of the most bogus patents I have ever seen" in an online forum. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Microsoft on the Threshold of a new name for Windows next week
Rebranded OS reportedly set to be flung open by Redmond
Business is back, baby! Hasta la VISTA, Win 8... Oh, yeah, Windows 9
Forget touchscreen millennials, Microsoft goes for mouse crowd
SMASH the Bash bug! Apple and Red Hat scramble for patch batches
'Applying multiple security updates is extremely difficult'
Apple: SO sorry for the iOS 8.0.1 UPDATE BUNGLE HORROR
Apple kills 'upgrade'. Hey, Microsoft. You sure you want to be like these guys?
ARM gives Internet of Things a piece of its mind – the Cortex-M7
32-bit core packs some DSP for VIP IoT CPU LOL
Lotus Notes inventor Ozzie invents app to talk to people on your phone
Imagine that. Startup floats with voice collab app for Win iPhone
'Google is NOT the gatekeeper to the web, as some claim'
Plus: 'Pretty sure iOS 8.0.2 will just turn the iPhone into a fax machine'
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.