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Thread: "no cd" patching - Opinions.

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    Agent of the System ikonia's Avatar
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    "no cd" patching - Opinions.

    This should probably go in the gaming forum, however due to the DRM threads and some of the media ripping and copying threads that have appeared on this forum, I thought it may be appropriate to open this topic here.

    I'm personally normally the first to critisise people for patching and copying games/music/dvd's etc, but last night I found myself tempted by the devil with regard to patcing a few games on my laptop with a no-cd patch. I decided against it in the end, but thought I'd sound this out to the Hexus community as I know there are wide and ranging opinions on this.

    What are peoples opinions of the "no cd" patches for games.

    Last night I had a tedious train jounrey home, and thought I'd nock in a few holes of Tiger Woods golf, only to discover that I hadn't left the DVD in the drive, and the game wouldn't start up. I then thought that killing a couple of desert rebels in black hawk down would appease my train journey, again - didn't have the cd on my so it was a none startup option. So it was down to to Age of Empires and some bot fragging unlread tournament.

    The reason these worked was because AOE didn't need the CD, and Unlreal tournament's official update patch removed the need for a CD.

    I had about 20 Cd's in my laptop bag, and a few note books, and bits and bobs. The thought of carrying further CD's in cases or out of cases is just becomeing a pain, more so if I want to play the game at home and keep a copy in my laptop bag for travel.

    Hence my thought about the no cd patching.

    This is clearly illegal unless an official patch, but I don't understand the point of making a "cd is needed" to play the game if it doesn't actually use the CD durning the game.
    I suppose this is because the license infact means if I wanted to play the game on my PC and my laptop, I should buy two copies of the game one for my laptop and one for my PC.

    What are peoples views on this ?
    (I won't be patching - but I'm curious to peoples views)
    It is Inevitable.....


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    Vive le pants! directhex's Avatar
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    the temptations to use cd cracks is high - though personally i'd be concerned about what ELSE has been patched into a random .exe distributed by a shadowy group doing illegal things

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    I'd love some sort of nocd patch for BF2 as I hate having to run the game with the cd in the drive, got a missus that uses the pc and a 3 year old kid that likes up pick things up with dirty fingers...

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    Lovely chap dangel's Avatar
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    I do find it a pain to dig out discs to play a game - i love playing SC Chaos Theory but i have deconstruct my room to find the darn disc everytime as it's got extra-evil starforce protection which means there isn't a no-cd patch for it. I've happily used them in the past and i don't see the problem in it - after all, if you bought the game why shouldn't you be able to use it in a more convenient way? To me it's no different from buying a CD and deciding i'd like to listen to it in my mp3 player..
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    Studmuffin Flibb's Avatar
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    Its one of my pet wind ups as well, was impressed when they made one of the IL2 games nocd in an official patch. I tend to play more DoD-S than anything else, as its steam authentication is done online I also play a bit of BF2, and allways end up hunting for the dvd, cant understand why they authentiate the multiplayer online, and still want a cd/dvd in the drive.

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    Vive le pants! directhex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dangel
    To me it's no different from buying a CD and deciding i'd like to listen to it in my mp3 player..
    which is illegal under UK law

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    Banhammer in peace PeterB kalniel's Avatar
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    But maybe allowed under EU law instead (as long as the mp3 copy is temporary)

    I don't think cd-checks are going to go away any time soon, but I have recently been enjoying the freedom of several games that don't need a disk - because they verify online instead. The more games that use digital distribution the more likely we're not going to need to keep media lying around. Of course, this is a problem if you can't get internet access, but it solves the no-cd issue. So be careful what you ask for

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    Seething Cauldron of Hatred TheAnimus's Avatar
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    What about emulation?

    For instance you can add a filter to the CD device driver, and have the CD on your HDD. Unlike demon tools, this is not normally look for by game developers. As far as i understand your not breaking any license (except copying the CD to the HDD in the first place?)

    Copying software is different to music, as when windows boots a program, it loads a copy into virtual memory (normally this will be in the physical realm, but a copy is made straight away) and then it starts to look at dependancies (dll's) it ensures each of these is loaded, and modifies the original program to indicate the address of the dll. So the program gets copied and modified just by running it. So many EULA's this is in direct breach of.
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    Agent of the System ikonia's Avatar
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    it was an interesting topic for me, hence my posting it.

    I pretty much echo whats been said by directhex in that you can't trust 3rd party modifications but the interesting thing for me is, that by forcing you to use the CD, your actually having a license between the media and the hardware it runs on, rarther than the game and the person who bought it.

    I suppose in theory I should have two copies of Tiger Woods golf, one for my laptop and one for my PC - but then as I said before this is a license of the physical media to one individual bit of kit (PC or laptop) rarther than the game (tiger woods no the physical DVD) and the person me eg: playing it on my laptop or/and PC

    just to add extra fuel to the topic
    It is Inevitable.....


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    I'm against "no CD/DVD" patching, but only because it may break the ability to update the game to newer versions (Like happens with Warcraft 3). Apart from that, I support it fully.

    In my case, I attend a lot of LANs. Now, unfortunately, theft at LANs is a reality, and for me to lug legit CDs/DVDs around with me asking for trouble. Every time I go to the loo or grab a bite to eat, there's the chance that they'll get pinched (And don't suggest putting it in my bag. At a LAN 3 or 4 months ago, a guy's wallet was stolen out of his bag while he was asleep). So what I do instead is rip images of the CDs/DVDs to harddrive and mount them with daemon tools. It's borderline legal, since one is technically allowed to make a backup of your software.

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    Lovely chap dangel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by directhex
    which is illegal under UK law
    Yes, I think i was one of the many that posted that fact on the recent mp3 thread... Smartarse
    It might well be illegal, but that's not really the point - the question is whether it's morally wrong, as it's pretty obvious that a: you can get away with it and b: the majority won't feel that you've done anything to harm the copyright holder. That's the analogy i'm drawing - that i've bought a licence to use a product (the game cd/audio cd) and all i'm doing is making it more covenient to use (no-cd patch/mp3).
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    Lovely chap dangel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eldren
    I'm against "no CD/DVD" patching, but only because it may break the ability to update the game to newer versions (Like happens with Warcraft 3). Apart from that, I support it fully.
    Then rename the game exe to "mygame.exe.o" and copy the 'fixed' exe on instead. Swap them back should you need to update with a game patch and then look for a new no-cd exe. Job done.
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    Lovely chap dangel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheAnimus
    Copying software is different to music, as when windows boots a program, it loads a copy into virtual memory (normally this will be in the physical realm, but a copy is made straight away) and then it starts to look at dependancies (dll's) it ensures each of these is loaded, and modifies the original program to indicate the address of the dll. So the program gets copied and modified just by running it. So many EULA's this is in direct breach of.
    Well I suppose following that line of thought you could argue that pre-buffering music is exactly the same thing - if a song is, say, 2mb in size (AAC DRM-ed) and you have a buffer of that size in your playback device, then a 'copy' is being made.
    Last edited by dangel; 09-11-2005 at 02:47 PM.
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    Seething Cauldron of Hatred TheAnimus's Avatar
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    I guess, what about if you've got it installed on one computer (running terminal services say) and then you have 5 people using it via remote desktop, each user running their own copy.

    Kinda like the CD in one player, but with 5 buffers so 5 people can listen to it. (and pause for upto the size of the buffer say).

    But yet it would be okay to have 5 people listen to it at once off one set of speakers?

    What about when you have the speakers set up to your kitchen, lounge and dining room (because your entertaining, and cooking for your guests).

    what about when yours guests start paying you money, for the wounderful evening you've provided them?

    what about when yours guets are on commerical premesise (a hotel say?)

    what happens when your guests are at their home on the internet listening to a radio station?

    Isn't the concept of fair use fun!
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    Senior Member specofdust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by directhex
    the temptations to use cd cracks is high - though personally i'd be concerned about what ELSE has been patched into a random .exe distributed by a shadowy group doing illegal things
    While it may seem shadowy to you, the community is thriving, active, large, and critical. If someone released a virii infected no-cd for a major or recent game then the community would be aware of it within hours and the word would be out. More common is the bundling of Virii with a no-cd, but virus scanners were created for a reason.

    Obviosly from a moral standpoint its totaly dumb. Anyone whos going to copy it is breaking the law in other ways, and anyone whos bought the original has done the good deed an' all, so really its an irrelevent piece of law designed to make software pubs feel just that little bit more in control of something that they really dont have control of.

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    Senior Member Workaholic's Avatar
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    I understand everyone's concern on games copying and legal issues, but no CD patches also reduces the amount of time you need to get a CD out of the case (getting it out of a DVD case I've noticed may one day snap) and waiting for it to load, then subjecting it to scratches whenever it spins in a CD drive.

    Therefore I believe that if games are validated through an online server e.g. Stream then you should be fine to 'patch' the game.

    NoCD patches should be fine I think as CDs and DVDs media only in fact have a 1 year lifeline, and when they do break you will need to send it back to the game manufacturer / company who then ask for a £10 replacement fee. Always written into the game manual at the back under guarantee terms and conditions.......

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