I cannot play MSN Music UK's music files on Vista - I've over 150 tracks that I purchased - and it doesn't work.
In short - technical support for MSN Music UK have told me that the music I have bought from the store - a Microsoft branded store - will not run on Windows Vista. The only solution? Support have instructed me to crack the DRM - yes, that's right, the recommended solution is for me to take the music to an XP system, burn it to disk, and then rip it back.
Want to know more? Read on.
Over a period of several years, I've been buying quite a bit of music from MSN Music UK - (not the same as the US store, which is now closed). This service is provided by OD2 (On Demand Distribution), a LoudEye company, which also offers over 60 music stores in various coutries, mostly in Europe. Nevertheless - it is a Microsoft branded store, and of course, Microsoft will have some kind of agreement with OD2, and will be taking some of the money.
I've over 150 tracks - a modest collection by some standards I'm sure, but nevertheless - I paid for every one of them legally, using the MSN Music store.
Recently, I had the opportunity to install Windows Vista RTM at home. I jumped at the chance, and decided to dive in at the deep end, and moved over completely, transferring my files - including my music.
WHen I got up and running, I tried playing one of my purchased tracks. Of course, as I was now on a completely different setup of Windows - Windows Media Player (11), needed to refetch the license from the licensing server at OD2. It popped up with a small web-page dialog, provided by the OD2's systems, asking for my username and password - which I put in. The page simply reloaded, asking for my details again. No matter how many times I put my credentials in - the page simply reloads, with no error message.
Before we start re-covering the obvious - yes, it's the right username and password, since it's the same one that I can sucessfully use to log on to the MSN Music Store's main home page, and if I enter incorrect details on purpose, I get an 'invalid username / password' error that I don't see when I enter the correct information.
Of course, I contacted tech support - who replied telling me I need to reset my DRM folder, and gave me instructions on how to do this that seemed to be crafted to an XP system (despite me making it clear I was using Vista with WMP11).
After being taken through various troubleshooting steps, none of which solved the problem (and I followed them carefully, I assure you), I was eventually sent an email telling me that it is in the terms and conditions that the service is incompatible with Windows Vista (I can find nothing of the sort in the terms of service), and that if I want access to my music, I should take the tracks to a PC where the music does play, burn the tracks to CD, and then rip them back - essentially I was told to crack the DRM; which in itself is a violation of the terms of service!
I was pretty shocked at this. All I'm trying to do is play music in Windows Media Format, on Windows Media Player, on Windows, purchased from a Microsoft branded store, protected using Microsoft's DRM systems - and it doesn't work.
I complained, and expressed my astonishment at their recommendation. That was almost three weeks ago. I received an email from escalated support, advising me to carry out a few steps that I'd allready done. I replied back, but have heard nothing since on any email address I have for them.
I'm pretty annoyed at all this - spread it far and wide, they deserve wrath - lots of wrath.