Zack's Kernel News

Zack's Kernel News

Article from Issue 208/2018
Author(s):

Zack Brown discusses implementing digital rights management in-kernel, improving lighting controls, and updating printk().

Implementing Digital Rights Management In-Kernel

Content providers are always interested in ways to stream audio and video in such a way that the data cannot be copied by the recipient. Sean Paul recently posted a patch that the Chrome OS team has been using for three years to control content on Exynos, MediaTek, and Rockchip hardware. The patch can be used to turn content protection entirely off, it can request that content protection be enabled by the hardware driver, and it can actually stream protected data.

The patch was received with suspicion by kernel developers.

Pavel Machek specifically said that he couldn't see any case where a user would set the feature to anything other than "off." He also asked, "If kernel implements this, will it mean hardware vendors will have to prevent user[s] from updating the kernel on machines they own?" And wondered, "If this is merged, does it open kernel developers to DMCA threats if they try to change it?"

[...]

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