Windows 10 Won't Run Certain Games With Securom or SafeDisc

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Windows 10 Won't Run Certain Games With Securom or SafeDisc

Grand Theft Auto III screen

Want to play Grand Theft Auto 3 or The Sims on Windows 10? Securom and SafeDisk won't let you.

Windows 10 is getting a mostly positive reception outside of a few frustating hiccups, but clearly it's a good platform for playing all our PC games, right? Not quite - some older titles are practically unplayable, but the reason has nothing to do with compatibility. Games like Grand Theft Auto 3, Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004, and the original Sims reportedly won't play without complex workarounds, thanks to key versions of Securom and SafeDisc ruled unsafe by Microsoft.

"Everything that ran in Windows 7 should also run in Windows 10," Microsoft's Boris Schneider-Johne said at Gamescom. "There are just two silly exceptions: Antivirus software and stuff that's deeply embedded into the system needs updating - but the developers are on it already - and then there are old games on CD-Rom that have DRM. This DRM stuff is also deeply embedded in your system, and that's where Windows 10 says 'sorry, we cannot allow that, because that would be a possible loophole for computer viruses.' That's why there are a couple of games from 2003-2008 with Securom, etc. that simply don't run without a no-CD patch or some such. We can just not support that if it's a possible danger for our users. There are a couple of patches from developers already, and there is stuff like GOG where you'll find versions of those games that work."

Securom and SafeDisc were controversial, but widely-used copy protection programs intended to prevent pirates from duplicating their original game disks. Whether they actually did their job is a matter of debate, but most gamers remember them for frustrating secondary features. Securom was often tied to an online activation system that locked players from their games, while older versions of SafeDisc had notable security vulnerabilities.

To be clear, Microsoft's decision to block these programs was probably the safest decision - who wants to fall victim to security flaws almost a decade old? But that hasn't stopped the Rovi Corporation, SafeDisc's creators, from saying Microsoft could have done more. "Safedisc DRM hasn't been supported for a few years now, and the driver has consequently not been updated for some time," Rovi told PCGamesHardware.de. "Microsoft should have migrated the existing software since Windows 8. We don't know if that's still possible with Windows 10 or if they simply didn't care about it."

So what can players do? If you can't find an official patch, the easiest option is to repurchase the game through GOG.com, or another digital distributor that removed the fussy DRM. You can also use software which updates the driver signature or do so manually to make your game playable. Outside of that you'll either have to turn to a (still illegal) no-CD crack, or keep an older version of Windows handy.

Either way, this is yet another reminder that restrictive DRM and video games rarely go hand-in-hand.

Source: Rock Paper Shotgun

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hm... thats how i play the sims anyway..allways have after the errors i had with sims2

also, its sims2 and the digital download version of the sims3 that have the SecuR0M....the sims1 just had the safedisk, which wasnt quite as bad. but the SecuR0M had me in fits because it was murdering my mainboards for years till i learned what it was doing.

and, you cant just buy the sims games from EA, because the origin installs the DRM too (which is why the old disk version of sims3 was usefull. you could choose not to install the EADM, otherwise known as EADownloadManager...which kept the secuR0M away, but the digital version with it or the origin version, installed the secuR0M anyway lol. and the 2012 and up versions wouldnt let you refuse to install origin....)

though at least you can use a mod for the sims3, instead of a no-cd...

Wait, GTAIII used either of those? other than checking if the disk is in the drive I never had any problems reagrding DRM.

So, when you install the no-CD crack, will Windows 10 detect it and disable the game as it's clearly 'pirated' software?

The always online, always updating, always watching you future looks wonderful. Looks like I'm sticking with Win 7 until something comes out that I need that cannot be run on it, otherwise known as the XP scenario.

Good on them. These forms of DRM were awfully dangerous, and I'm glad to see MS closing up such a big security hole. I'll be annoying for consumers now, but in the long run it'll be a good thing.

That said, it's worth noting this only affects certain versions of SecuROM and SafeDisc, those that latch on to the disc drive and related drivers. For example, anything that has no disc protection, but uses SecuROM to phone home and count activations on a license key? That'll continue working as before. Microsoft's target here isn't DRM in general, just some of the more broken and dangerous DRM that behaves more like malware. Among other things, this means the Origin version of The Sims 2 will work just fine on Win10, because it does not use any disc version of SecuROM at all.

fix-the-spade:
So, when you install the no-CD crack, will Windows 10 detect it and disable the game as it's clearly 'pirated' software?

This isn't implemented at all yet, and even when it is, the EULA only allows them to do this to games that Microsoft either owns or distributes. Won't affect people cracking their old Sims installs at all.

P.S. Thanks

0takuMetalhead:
Wait, GTAIII used either of those? other than checking if the disk is in the drive I never had any problems reagrding DRM.

\
It's the "checking if the disk is in the drive" that is the problem. Digital Restrictions Management like SecuROM basically acts like a Ring0 rootkit and demands full hardware access, which is also why SecuROM and Starforce were able to physically damage drives and disks: their crap interfered with the actual hardware.

Basically, this is Microsoft telling the crimina... the DRM merchants that the gig is up. As for game publishers, either they release a DRM free installer, or they lose all right to whine about nocd patches.

erbkaiser:

0takuMetalhead:
Wait, GTAIII used either of those? other than checking if the disk is in the drive I never had any problems reagrding DRM.

\
It's the "checking if the disk is in the drive" that is the problem. Digital Restrictions Management like SecuROM basically acts like a Ring0 rootkit and demands full hardware access, which is also why SecuROM and Starforce were able to physically damage drives and disks: their crap interfered with the actual hardware.

Basically, this is Microsoft telling the crimina... the DRM merchants that the gig is up. As for game publishers, either they release a DRM free installer, or they lose all right to whine about nocd patches.

May I ask you then which of those "companies" III uses for DRM? I know that these kinds of DRM can be lethal, but I never knew that GTAIII made use of one that could be considered a rootkit.

Not sure about 3, lost my disk for it ages ago. San Andreas and IV (disk) use SecuROM though so probably 3 did as well.

To be truthful later versions of SecuROM (7 and up IIRC) weren't as harmful as previous ones or the likes of Starforce and Safedisk, but it's still cancer.

Take Two is (was?) one of the worst publishers, especially with GTAIV's initial release. That game had up to four layers of DRM bogging it down.

Edit: it's worse. GTA 3 was infected with Safedisc. Moving to SecuROM for the sequels was an improvement on it!

No, do tell me more why I shouldn't even consider upgrading from 7.

Windows 10 is a gift that just keeps on giving, isn't it? I know it's a not really an issue when you can simply use a no-cd crack. But still, the flaws of this OS keep getting revealed almost every day.

Adam Jensen:
Windows 10 is a gift that just keeps on giving, isn't it? I know it's a not really an issue when you can simply use a no-cd crack. But still, the flaws of this OS keep getting revealed almost every day.

It's a bit of a lose-lose scenario here, where it's less of an OS flaw, and more of a design decision. Personally holding out on my W10 verdict, but I can't really fault them here for not putting up with the kind of harmful bullshit secuROM / SafeDisc introduce.

If it helps, I refuse to run anything with SecuROM in it either.

RealRT:
No, do tell me more why I shouldn't even consider upgrading from 7.

Because an OS that refuses to let malware (which is what these versions of SecuROM and SafeDisc clearly are, by their own admission) run is objectively an improvement over one that doesn't?

Windows 10? What's that? I only recall there being 7, right Mr. Laptop?

Mr. Laptop: Indeed, master! Nothing more advanced than Windows 7 Ultimate. I heard some rumors the other day, but...no! These were just lies! Amusing fantasies and tales of terror!

There, you see? Never heard of it.

erbkaiser:
Not sure about 3, lost my disk for it ages ago. San Andreas and IV (disk) use SecuROM though so probably 3 did as well.

To be truthful later versions of SecuROM (7 and up IIRC) weren't as harmful as previous ones or the likes of Starforce and Safedisk, but it's still cancer.

Take Two is (was?) one of the worst publishers, especially with GTAIV's initial release. That game had up to four layers of DRM bogging it down.

Edit: it's worse. GTA 3 was infected with Safedisc. Moving to SecuROM for the sequels was an improvement on it!

This is admittedly worrying me now. I'll check the disk later if the files are present on it (haven't played it myself in awhile, hell, I think I use a no-CD crack for this game on my current laptop). Thanks for the info though, appreciate it.

Edit: hours after my internet went offline, I used a tool to remove it from the .exe. Should work now without the horrible DRM kicking in I think.

"Booo DRM is cancer, ban evil DRM!!" "Hey guys, Microsoft refuses to support dangerous loophole ridden rootkit DRM" "BOOOOO Microsoft is cancer, give us back our DRM!!!" Never change internet.

From my perspective this is a good thing, nice to see MS finally bothering to give a damn about security.

fix-the-spade:
So, when you install the no-CD crack, will Windows 10 detect it and disable the game as it's clearly 'pirated' software?

You do realize that was a load of clickbaiting bullshit based on a snippit of the EULA, the intended application of which is totally unknown, and there is zero evidence of Win10 ever shutting down pirated software, nevermind the insane complexities of how that would even work? People are wayyyy to quick to belive anything they read so long as it supports their preconceived notions.

Well, another entry for my list of reasons for not updating my PC to Windows 10

Steve the Pocket:

RealRT:
No, do tell me more why I shouldn't even consider upgrading from 7.

Because an OS that refuses to let malware (which is what these versions of SecuROM and SafeDisc clearly are, by their own admission) run is objectively an improvement over one that doesn't?

glad you said it so i didn't have to... this is just people WANTING to hate the new windows OS because hating any version of windows after XP is the cool thing to do...

this is actually a PRO-CONSUMER move by microsoft that should be celebrated. yes, it's made a few older games unplayable, but that's not the fault of the OS for trying to protect you. place the blame where it lies: with the DRM makers.

this is another example of DRM not stopping pirates but still hampering the legal use and ownership, and microsoft is taking a great approach to it: make it not work. that will force the hands of game publishers that want their game playable on PC to also adopt a pro-consumer approach to their DRM policies.

How is this a bad thing? Old buggy DRM software is no longer supported meaning you can't play a handful of old games. But you can play without the DRM anyways because the article states several work-arounds. Again, how is this a bad thing? This adds to my pro-update pile.

Adam Jensen:
Windows 10 is a gift that just keeps on giving, isn't it? I know it's a not really an issue when you can simply use a no-cd crack. But still, the flaws of this OS keep getting revealed almost every day.

Flaws? Not allowing horrible malware-like DRM to infest a windows 10 system is a 'flaw'?

This isn't a flaw. The alternative decision would've been worse.

Unfortunately, the side effect is this old stuff breaks. Because it was designed to break the games on purpose if anything tries to circumvent it's over-the-top dubious methods of functioning.

Forcing this stuff to not work on windows 10 also deters people trying to resume using such absurd methods in the future.

This is a good thing. Just has frustrating side effects.

Adam Jensen:
Windows 10 is a gift that just keeps on giving, isn't it? I know it's a not really an issue when you can simply use a no-cd crack. But still, the flaws of this OS keep getting revealed almost every day.

Since when is protecting your computer from malicious software (Even if it's disguised as DRM) an OS "Flaw"? The flaw is in the games, not the OS.

Scow2:

Adam Jensen:
Windows 10 is a gift that just keeps on giving, isn't it? I know it's a not really an issue when you can simply use a no-cd crack. But still, the flaws of this OS keep getting revealed almost every day.

Since when is protecting your computer from malicious software (Even if it's disguised as DRM) an OS "Flaw"? The flaw is in the games, not the OS.

It's the idea of having being told it won't work so they can say SEE. Honestly I'm shocked those old games still work minus the DRM. I will admit there are things I question about Windows 10, but it's not a failure of a OS like people claim it is.

Whether it's too dangerous or not for the consumer should be up to the consumer. That's the frustrating part about where things are heading. We are slowly losing control of our own systems in the same patronizing way a parent coddles a child.

I get them warning the consumer and saying it's potentially malicious. But to prevent overriding it altogether? Is this really happening? You can't just run the program as administrator and that be that? *sigh*

I'm glad Windows 10 is doing well and is so much better than Win8. I just hope we (consumers) eventually start getting control of our system back.

Well, would you look at that. Securom, the gift that's still f***ing giving.

Steve the Pocket:

RealRT:
No, do tell me more why I shouldn't even consider upgrading from 7.

Because an OS that refuses to let malware (which is what these versions of SecuROM and SafeDisc clearly are, by their own admission) run is objectively an improvement over one that doesn't?

And the only downside is not being able to access games I paid for. On a gaming PC.

I came in here expecting to be annoyed that it won't run some games, but while this is short-term annoying in some ways, if it leads to less retarded DRM being used then yeah, I'm all for it. Still not getting Win10 for a while though, but it's encouraging to hear a few good things.

major_chaos:
"Booo DRM is cancer, ban evil DRM!!" "Hey guys, Microsoft refuses to support dangerous loophole ridden rootkit DRM" "BOOOOO Microsoft is cancer, give us back our DRM!!!" Never change internet.

People aren't saying they want DRM. They're saying that since they were saddled with DRM (And a large chunk of people have always been unhappy about that), they'd like to at least be able to play the damn games they paid for, by running the things they want on their system.

And it's not like Windows hasn't jumped in bed with Securom before (As the article points out, Microsoft Flight Simulator, and Bioshock 2 comes to mind).

But hey, if there'd never been any DRM to begin with we wouldn't be in this mess, so I guess the folk you're belittling had it right all along.

It's sounds neat and all they can block some of these shitty DRM types, but will it stop new incarnations in the future? How will we know new problems won't just be created?

Also, I believe there should be an option to shut this block system on and off, because convenience and control should be the future for the millionth time.

Lightknight:
Whether it's too dangerous or not for the consumer should be up to the consumer. That's the frustrating part about where things are heading. We are slowly losing control of our own systems in the same patronizing way a parent coddles a child.

The thing is, we've tried that approach and it's not working. All it's created is an internet packed with security holes that's an absolute nightmare for security specialists to address on a wide scale. While I agree consumers should have rights and control over their systems, the average consumer usually isn't tech-savvy enough to keep up with it.

The average person will usually choose a fun, short-term convenience over a safe, long-term payoff. It's like saying consumers can choose whether to be vaccinated, or smoke cigarettes in public places, or even eat fatty foods whenever they want. It makes sense in principle, but in reality becomes nasty without checks in place. You need systems in place that balance personal control with overall safety, however patronizing it might sound.

Getting back to this fix, it's not perfect, but it shows designers are trying to find ways to make this stuff happen in the background. And there are still workarounds for those who really want to play the games anyway. It's annoying, but in the long run will hopefully prove to be a good thing.

Loonyyy:

People aren't saying they want DRM. They're saying that since they were saddled with DRM (And a large chunk of people have always been unhappy about that), they'd like to at least be able to play the damn games they paid for, by running the things they want on their system.

Which would require MS to open a security blackhole on an OS where one of the primary goals seems to be improving security. I would rather need a small workaround to play a few games (games, which given their age, may have required workarounds to get running on a 64bit OS anyway) than allow potentially subverted crapware to have full system access.

I love how people are praising Microsoft for this when they are guilty of shitty DRM practices, too. Like Games for Windows.

RealRT:

Steve the Pocket:

RealRT:
No, do tell me more why I shouldn't even consider upgrading from 7.

Because an OS that refuses to let malware (which is what these versions of SecuROM and SafeDisc clearly are, by their own admission) run is objectively an improvement over one that doesn't?

And the only downside is not being able to access games I paid for. On a gaming PC.

You would have been denied access to those games anyway, once the publisher decided to stop supporting them and shut down the authentication servers.

M$ has supported its share of DRM, but that doesn't really make them in the wrong here. (and specifically here)
Securom and Safedick Safedisk were corporate malware, period.

So for once, I don't blame M$ but rather the asshole companies that included that shitty DRM in their products in the first place. (and they don't give a shit either; they aren't making money from those titles anymore)

Best thing to, as always, is deny companies money that force that shit onto the market.
Don't buy their games; no matter how good they are otherwise.

What? That's not fair to the developers that make good games?
It's not their fault corporate forced them to duct tape malware onto their product?

Well tough shit, because it's even less fair for the paying customer. We're the ones who have to cope with it well after the publisher and their developers have moved on; well after the DRM breaks due to being outdated, or when the servers go down.

The silver lining is that thanks to systems like GoG and Steam, those kinds of DRM systems largely fell out of favor.
(now we just need to keep Always Online from becoming an industry standard)

Steve the Pocket:

RealRT:

Steve the Pocket:

Because an OS that refuses to let malware (which is what these versions of SecuROM and SafeDisc clearly are, by their own admission) run is objectively an improvement over one that doesn't?

And the only downside is not being able to access games I paid for. On a gaming PC.

You would have been denied access to those games anyway, once the publisher decided to stop supporting them and shut down the authentication servers.

Remind me again since when does running GTA3 demand an autentification via a server?

Can't say I disagree with Microsoft here, Securom is terrible and may as well be a virus for all the trouble it causes even for legitimate owners of games.

Also speaking as a developer myself you can't expect us to keep supporting software which is well and truly outdated (do you know how friggin hard it is to support legacy software??? In my case IE8 and 9, anything even remotely modern and it has issues).

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