Customers of the Rhapsody music service who still have DRM'd files must takes the painful steps of converting their music to audio CD and then ripping it again, or lose the ability to play the files after November 7, when the DRM system goes offline
The dangers of DRM has been highlighted against as Rhapsody/RealNetworks announces they will shut off support for the DRM system used in RAX music files, and if users don't take action now, they will lose all of their legally purchased music forever.
Rhapsody has sent a message too all of its customers urging them to convert their RAX music files purchased before July 2008 to audio CD, or face the prospect of not being able to play them ever again after November 7th, the switch off date for the RAX DRM.
Rhapsody killed off its DRM music service in July 2008 to follow the industry trend of moving away from DRM, after public protests by users.
But for the unlucky Rhapsody users with DRM music, they need to burn the music to audio CD and then rip them again in order to get a DRM free digital copy, as Rhapsody will not be providing replacement, DRM-free MP3s. Rhapsody describes this potentially arduous process as a "small step".
"Once you take this small step, you can continue to play these tracks on your audio CD or rip them to any format you desire and play them on your PC," read Rhapsody's message to customers.
While the DRM server will be shut off, the DRM'd songs may still continue to work, as long as users don't "change to a new computer or substantially update your current computer".