Windows 10 Won’t Run Games Using SafeDisc Or Securom DRM

Windows 10 won’t run games that employ SafeDisc or certain versions of Securom DRM, rendering hundreds of old disc-based games potentially unplayable without complex workarounds. Games which used these forms of DRM range from Crimson Skies to Grand Theft Auto 3, Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004 to the original The Sims. Yet despite this change coming in Windows 10, blame can’t likely be placed at Microsoft’s feet. For one, SafeDisc is notoriously insecure and Microsoft’s decision to block it from their new operating system will likely protect more users than it hurts.

More details below.

This issue was touched upon by Microsoft’s Boris Schneider-Johne at this year’s Gamescom. The video is in German, but in the segment at the timestamp linked above he says:

“Everything that ran in Windows 7 should also run in Windows 10. 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.”

There are also specific reports of users encountering this problem. For example, according to user Gamboleer on the Microsoft support forum, the SafeDisc issue relates to the file SECDRV.SYS. This file is present on older versions of Windows but isn’t in Windows 10 and attempts to run the file, or the games that depend on it, fail.

PCGamesHardware.de reached out to Rovi Corporation, the creators of SafeDisc, for a statement regarding the incompatibility. There’s no direct quote from Rovi and again the resulting story is in German, but translated into English the “update” section at the top reads:

“Safedisc DRM hasn’t been supported for a few years now, and the driver has consequently not been updated for some time. 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.”

It seems more likely, based on Schneider-Johne’s comments above, that it was a deliberate choice to exclude SafeDisc. The software was one of a number of on-disc digital rights management solutions employed by PC game publisher and developers in the early ’00s in an effort to stop piracy and it was a pain even then. Eventually a security hole was discovered in November 2007 which allowed for “elevation of privilege” and for attackers to execute unrestricted kernel-level code, effectively taking complete control of a PC. This security flaw was patched by Microsoft, but the problems it caused became part of the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s arguments against DRM.

Despite this arguably being good for security, it’s still bad for people who want to easily play old favourites. In many cases, official patches may have already removed the need for disc checks, but otherwise you might need to resort to dual-booting into an older version of Windows, riskily (and ironically) looking for a no-CD crack to remove the check, re-purchasing the game from a digital distributor that employs modern or no DRM such as GOG.com, or test-signing for the SafeDisc driver yourself. This last option is the fiddliest, but legal and free: you can download software which will apparently do it or learn how to do it yourself. If you choose this route it’ll leave a watermark, though you can also read how to remove that here.

I wouldn’t blame Windows 10 for this, but it’s another example of the harm done by restrictive or draconian DRM.

Thanks to reader Marcus Hoffmann for the tip and Thomas Faust and Martin Vigneron for the German to English translations.

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101 Comments

  1. Pich says:

    one of the biggest problem with Windows is that it has to be backward compatible with a shitton of dated software and drivers, otherwise the businesses riot. i’m not really that sad that an old, never liked and potentially harmful piece of software got the boot.

  2. Cryptoshrimp says:

    So, on the one hand, Windows 10 will block pirates games from running. On the other hand, it will prevent games from running unless they have an ‘illegal’ component welded on. Huh.

    • Pich says:

      re-read that article, it’s only for first-party games by microsoft, not unlike Steam, and it’s probably for tablet and phone Win10

      • demicanadian says:

        iirc it can only block stuff bought on windows store. I doubt anyone will use windows store.

    • Solidstate89 says:

      It won’t do anything of the sort. That tidbit you’re referencing is for MS services, which DOES NOT cover Windows. It covers things like the Store, or the Xbox (which is where the “unauthorized” hardware comes into play as well).

      There’s already enough legitimate criticism for Windows 10, we don’t need to be chucking lies on top of it.

  3. nimbulan says:

    Good riddance, invasive DRM.

  4. deABREU says:

    so, all one has to do is to find a no-cd patch? hardly a dealbreaker.

    • Pulstar says:

      But in the future current DRM schemes will likely block you from playing today’s games.

      • Xzi says:

        I really doubt it. The DRM of old was particularly draconian with stuff like install limits, hardware checks, etc. By comparison, Steamworks uses a very light touch as DRM, and it isn’t something you have to worry about at all as long as the Steam service is still up and running. Same deal with other DD platforms. Then you’ve got a lot of DRM-free stuff, GOG, etc. Even if some of the larger DD services do somehow die in the future, the storage capacity of HDDs and SSDs will be massive enough by then to download your entire library before they go offline.

        • InternetBatman says:

          Indie stuff has gotten more professional and gone mostly DRM free so that’s safe. But several companies have gone from the simple server checks at install of the early oughts to hosting files on the server and always on requirements. Diablo 3 being an example of this. Sure this stuff can always be beat, but if they raise the level of work it requires, many mediocre AAA games will be unrecoverable.

          • Borsook says:

            you’re right, but with Blizzard I hope they will solve this, after all, their older games (e.g. Diablo 2) got official patches removing the CD-check that was in place. Although suddenly adding offline at the end of Diablo 3’s life might be a PR problem for them (after saying for so long it is not possible)

        • LexW1 says:

          The big problem is going to be with games where some of the processing is actually done server-side, and/or information is held server-side. Not many of those outside of MMORPGs, ARPGs and the like yet, but they’re getting more common and MS wants to make them the norm (or, to be fair, did at one point in the Xbox One’s design life – I’m not sure they’re so into it now).

          Once the servers go down for those, it’s over, unless the code has escaped into the wild (and that pretty much hasn’t happened for any major MMO or similar for several years).

        • epeternally says:

          Even with how lightweight Steamworks is, Denuvo is a very intrusive and draconian solution, and it seems to be becoming increasingly prevalent (Arkham Knight, Dragon Age: Inquisition). It’s easy to see that being broken by future Windows updated in a way that Steamworks never will be. Hell, I’d go as far as to say it’s almost inevitable.

  5. Rock1m1 says:

    This is good news. Not supporting anti consumer DRM is a great thing. Besides, I would use would have normally broken those DRMs anyways.

    • Don Reba says:

      It doesn’t support old anti-consumer DRM. New DRM will find a way. It’s a strictly losing proposition for the consumer, though, really, a minor one.

      • pepperfez says:

        Of course that lost money is being used to buy the consumer additional inconvenience, so whatever the dollar cost is can be doubled to find lost utility.

      • LionsPhil says:

        Hey, you can point the consumer to GOG and make them buy their games twice!

        • Whelp says:

          Just buy stuff on GOG in the first place.
          (Also, you can re-use a lot of old CD-keys on GOG now, including the Stalker series, which had horrible DRM originally.)

      • KDR_11k says:

        Well, they COULD make it a policy to add shitware like this to anti-virus detection lists but I’m sure the business pressure will be strongly against that.

  6. mighti says:

    I’m okay with this, but it means a bit of faff with games like San Andreas where the only full version is now the disc version.

    • bjohndooh says:

      For San Andreas – just find the Steam to Retail patcher (it’ll be ~1 GB)
      Then find the HOODLUM no-cd exe, plug that in and you’re good to go.

  7. Phinor says:

    Rally Trophy doesn’t work in Windows 10 even with compatibility modes or other fancy settings like that. Worked in every previous Windows. Blah. It’s the biggest shame of all, there hasn’t been a replacement for that game in 14 years.

    I wonder if it’s DRM related, though the game doesn’t require CD at all after install so I doubt it even has DRM.

  8. Barberetti says:

    No probs, I removed that shit from my games a long time ago.

  9. TimRobbins says:

    Thanks Microsoft, and good riddance. If people actually supported those awful DRMs by paying for them, you get what’s comin’ to ya.

    • Vodka, Crisps, Plutonium says:

      It’s easy to blame the paying customer for what was shoved down their gob, along with the game they’ve purchased and wanted to have fun with.
      Not like they always have had an option to buy DRM-free version or a slightly less intrusive DRM-version.

      While i grant MS for showing once again the inevitable fate of DRM-ridden digital purchases, It’s hard to stomach it without having legal grounds for being unable to play a torrented game you can’t buy anymore.

  10. LionsPhil says:

    a couple of games

    A good statement harmed by a ridiculous understatement. Pretty much any AAA game from the era will have SecuROM, Safedisc, or similar evils using similar, now-prohibited tricks.

    I wouldn’t blame Windows 10 for this, but it’s another example of the harm done by restrictive or draconian DRM.

    This is bang on the money, though. And remember it applies to modern, account-based DRM too, in a different way, as the range of supported operating systems for a game drifts into the past and the range of supported operating systems for the DRM client upon it closes up around the future. There are already games on Steam that only don’t run on older Windows versions because Steam itself dropped support for them.

    • subedii says:

      And of course there’s the question of what happens when services like Steam or Origin simply pack up. Or simply even have a change of management that decides “you know what, those games are old, we don’t really need to keep wasting pence worth of bandwidth on them, and our contracts have got us covered to discontinue whenever we please”.

      • InternetBatman says:

        I would say the risk of that is marginal compared to the service folding. The less people redownload or use games, the less they’ll have to pay for them, and Amazon (or whatever) servers means that you can structure that load dynamically instead of having to pay for server hardware. Also dedicated servers for specific non-multiplayer games seems to have gone the wayside as folding in your company’s package is more popular now. Also, it’s pretty bad press when games stop functioning.

        So I don’t think the cost benefit analysis favors closing servers anymore.

        • subedii says:

          Pretty bad press never stopped EA shutting down multiplayer servers. They do it all the time.

    • KDR_11k says:

      Client-based DRM is on less shaky ground, the workings of that offline copy protection are comparable to malware and out-of-spec use of OS resources, clients may have a problematic purpose but at least they stay within the spec of what a user space application can do.

  11. Premium User Badge

    phuzz says:

    My Oculus rift has stopped working as well, although it doesn’t seem to be mentioned by many people?
    Anyone else having problems with the Oculus service crashing/not starting with an AMD card?

  12. jrodman says:

    Wait, so the invasive DRM driver crap will still work if you just sign the driver? If true, this sounds like Microsoft did not take any deliberate measure, but is just more uniformly enforcing their requirement for driver signing which has been in the works for many years now.

    In other words, it doesn’t sound like the system of windows has been tightened up beyond requiring signatures. I’ve always found these types of measures a bit questionable. I can see the theoretical benefit, but miscreants can always find a way to sign the software via indirection (typically acquiring the key via indirection), so I believe the practical security gains are not very large. Usually it means that a misused key can be revoked after it becomes apparent that harm is being done. Perhaps it will close the door a bit on extremely large scale compromises.

    • steves says:

      “if you just sign the driver”

      It ain’t anywhere near as easy as ‘just’ clicking a yes/no option.

      Setting up Windows to run unsigned drivers (when, for example, you are developing them) is a pain in the arse, as it probably should be.

      The option is there if you need it, and you know what you are doing, but I am pretty sure there is no way to for malware to get you to do it easily.

      • jrodman says:

        As a build engineer, I have configured systems and software to automate driver signing. I am familiar with the process.

        That seems independent from the process of installing them when already signed, where users are happy to click “okay whatever” to most installation prompts.

        In short, I’m not sure I understand your post, because it’s only tengentially related to mine.

        • jangove says:

          This isn’t automated driver signing. This is permitting UNSIGNED drivers, as in for the development of drivers for a new piece of hardware from ground zero. I’ve never done either, but the later is a PTA from all I’ve heard. THAT is what is required if you want to get SecureROM et. al. running at least as I understand it.

  13. Premium User Badge

    The Sombrero Kid says:

    I’m pretty sure this is to lock down filter drivers to enable their work on the secure kernel which ironically is designed to facilitate drm – link to channel9.msdn.com

  14. LogicalDash says:

    Somewhere in this world is a person who owns every game protected by Steam’s DRM, who leaves their machine on, downloading it all, until Steam asks for an upgrade. Then, they put Steam into offline mode, and back up the whole installation, just in case something’s about to change. They’re constantly running short of hard drives, begging people to seed even a mere terabyte of their torrent, accepting donations only in BitCoin lest EA send in the piranhas.

    • jrodman says:

      This has all the earmarks of a fantastic post, but somehow I find myself too thick to work it out.

  15. Premium User Badge

    Aerothorn says:

    If it’s “a danger to our users” then why did Microsoft use it for its own games?

    • tomimt says:

      Because all the cool kids were doing it as well. But it’s kinda like what Marge said to Homer: “If Detective Sipowicz jumped off a cliff, would you do that too?”

  16. Neurotic says:

    Good riddance to bad rubbish. If only they could get rid of that f***ing StarForce sh1t too, I’d be in heaven.

    • TheMightyEthan says:

      Oh dear lord yes. I don’t remember what game it was, but there was some game I was trying to play (legitimately) like 8 or 9 years ago that had StarForce and it screwed my computer so hard I ended up reformatting and reinstalling Windows from scratch.

      • Baines says:

        Wasn’t Starforce the DRM that led to Ubisoft flat out saying the official “fixes” for a couple of their games was to search for and download NoCD patches?

    • Don Reba says:

      Old versions of StarForce had white lists of OS versions they ran on, so they stopped working on newer systems by design.

  17. Imaginary Llamas says:

    That’s odd, I’ve been playing The Saboteur recently on Windows 10 despite it having Securom. Does this change only apply to disc-based games then? (I got the Saboteur from Origin)

    • drewski says:

      There are different types and levels of Securom DRM from memory, only some of which require whatever it is that Microsoft have written out of Windows for 10. I think. I might be wrong.

  18. Wisq says:

    Wait, people actually ran CD-based games without immediately applying a no-CD patch?

    In any case, there will undoubtedly be pirate versions that dispatch with this issue and let you continue to play the game, whether you rightfully purchased it or not. It’s sad that we have to rely on the pirate networks to be our video games archivists, but that’s the position we’re in.

    • Silent_Thunder says:

      This was pretty much my thought as well. Unless it was one of the few ones where the no-cd patch tripped up the online authentication for multiplyer, it was the first thing I did because screw swapping out several dozen different game discs out of a giant CD binder.

    • Nereus says:

      I used to make disc images of these games, properly done you could create disc images without any of the DRM. Thus, no cracked executable needed. So yeah, some of us used to run these games without no-cd cracks, but for perhaps a different reason. I miss those days, when DRM was often identifiable by disc sector.

      • jrodman says:

        I’m confused. How do you mean that the disk images were without DRM when you suggest that you still used the original executable image (presumably with DRM still intact)?

        Do you just mean that the disc image software handled the secure-rom stuff? I never knew how it did that. Did it interoperate with the weird driver crap or somehow fake it? I didn’t think users actually got much of a choice as to whether the securerom driver got installed.

        • Nereus says:

          The disc image was created from the original disc and cut out certain sectors of a write. Those sectors contained the DRM. Safedisc and securom got better at this and emulation was required for some titles, before they finally moved past sector based DRM. I know I started using no-cd cracks once it became harder to actually burn the images so they’d run but for most of the life of safedisc this was possible, and a good chunk of securoms life too.

      • Shadow says:

        No, it’s not that creating a disc image right removes the DRM. It’s rather that the DRM can be fooled to take the disc image as the legitimate disc as long as it’s mounted, either due to the image’s specifications or the mounting program’s emulation of the security measures the DRM checks for.

        • Nereus says:

          The later versions of securom and safedisc were not as simple as removing the sectors from the disc and some emulation was required, but the early ones were that simple.

  19. Babymech says:

    Why this ridiculous and obsolete narrative that downloading cracks and/or cracked software is ‘risky’? Is it just a concerted effort to try to dissuade people from piracy, and the argument that it is illegal and immoral is considered insufficiently effective? It might have been true ten or fifteen years ago, but today, anyone who is competent enough to test-sign for the driver is competent enough to (much more easily) find a safe and reliable scene release of the game. I’m not saying that anyone should pirate software – I just wonder what the point of perpetuating this obviously false narrative is. You might as well say that piracy is bad because your modem will tie up your phone line while you’re trying to get into those 1337 BBSes…

    • pepperfez says:

      It’s just one of those bits of conventional wisdom like “Men hate shopping” or “Everyone on Craigslist is a serial killer.” People just repeat them without thinking because obviously it’s true, everyone always says it.

      • Graham Smith says:

        Or maybe not everyone who plays videogames on PC is adept or knowledgeable about the hardware, software and culture that surround them. I can think of many people who might want to get The Sims 1 to work but who might not be able to tell the difference between a ‘legitimate’ download of an illegal crack and an illegitimate download that’s going to install dodgy crap on their machine.

        • subedii says:

          Yeah a ridiculous number of those sites will try to infect you with drive-by’s. If not directly then via their adverts and 12 dozen pop-up/under windows.

          I remember reading a report recently that almost every single proxy of a certain popular torrent site attempted to infect security researchers PC’s with malware.

        • malkav11 says:

          Yeah, working with the fairly easily identified “legit” no-CD sites or even most reputable torrent sites isn’t particularly risky, but if one is entirely clueless and, say, just types in “sims crack” into Google or something, that’s a bit different.

        • pepperfez says:

          You’re right, my snark was misplaced. I honestly, sincerely forgot that not everyone goes straight to name-brand torrents — the other way is totally dubious, but I had dismissed it as a thing people did.

          Maybe…those Craigslisters are all serial killers?

        • Babymech says:

          This is why I said “Anyone who can test-sign for the driver” is competent enough – obviously there is a theoretical possibility of fucking up your system, but it’s hardly accurate to say that pirated software is ‘risky’ just because of this.

          I’m sure nobody wants this to become a guideline for how to obtain safe, illegal software, but it’s still undeniably the case that if you take the path of least resistance – type in the name of the most well-known pirate site in the world in your adress bar, avoid clicking the banner ads once you get there, search for the game you want and select the top results that come up (most seeded=most reliable), your risk is minimal.

          Unless you’re looking for early release of Ed McMillen’s ‘Fingered’ because hoo boy… that’s… well. Yeesh. Don’t do that.

    • Press X to Gary Busey says:

      I think it’s a fair warning if you mention NoCD cracks as an option.
      At least to clear your conscience of even a single reader downloading the first Sims.exe google “I’m Feeling Lucky” result, then returning to leave angry-angry comments because the computer caught fire.

    • jrodman says:

      Is it really obsolete? I’m definitely the kind of person willing to go look for a pirate version of a game I already own to dodge some annoyances, but we’re very far removed from the days when I had little to no income and was much more flexible on the topic.

      Back then (like 1995) the idea of pirate releases getting compromised was nearly unthinkable. The cracking groups had far too much pride invested in a quality release, and I was pretty aware of the standard distribution methods via IRC and the like. Nowadays, I find the piracy world to have far more parasitical entities that collect cracks but add-on various types of malware. It could just be that I’m far less savvy now, but I don’t think so.

    • lutjasuki says:

      You know the torrent sites that they keep raiding and trying to shut down? Those are the reliable ones and the various legal officials around the world keep telling you about them.

      They will also show you that steam drm is so easily circumventable that i think it is only retained as a bullet point to persuade tech-ignorant business types to sell their game on steam.

    • Shadow says:

      Essentially, like many things, it is quite risky if you don’t know what you’re doing.

      Not to be redundant on what’s already been said, but it’s true many sites bombard the user with links, ads, even fake download buttons, and unless they have some clue as to how to navigate the mess and ignore the misinformation, they might end up stung.

    • bill says:

      Having been up to date with torrents etc.. back when I was a poor student, I recently needed to try and download a torrent of a game that I own but could not access.

      And I discovered that due to not keeping up with the “scene” there were a huge number of dodgy sites with dodgy ads, and previously trustworthy sites had become dodgy, and it was going to take a fair amount of research on my part to get up to speed with where and how to get hold of things in a safe way.

      My first mistake was allowing the old old old version of uTorrent on my PC to update.. I don’t know if uTorrent is still considered reliable, but the fact that its first action was to launch a whole load of popups and attempt to post to facebook wasn’t really reassuring.

      In the end I just decided it wasn’t worth it.

      But I would be sad to find that a whole load of my old games are no longer accessible, so I may need to work out how to get nocd cracks in the future.

      • Borsook says:

        Times are changing for the better too. You do not need to even see a torrent site, a client like Qbitorrent has a built in search, you do everything in app.

  20. Chorltonwheelie says:

    So, rather than “WINDOWS 10 WON’T RUN GAMES” you meant “Hey, thanks Microsoft”?

    Honestly.

    • Baines says:

      RPS was ultimately stuck between denouncing DRM or denouncing Win10, and chose DRM.

      They did try, though, as there is a paragraph explaining why it is bad for people that Windows did this. :p (To be fair, the paragraph is accurate about the inconvenience, and offers workarounds. It wasn’t really a Win10 hit piece.)

      • Graham Smith says:

        Hey Baines, you do realise that our Windows 10 review was broadly positive, yeah?

        • Baines says:

          I do feel that RPS is a bit too willing to jump on the Anti-Win10 bandwagon, but even then the bit about having to choose between the greater of two evils was at least half in jest.

          Particularly when “calling out” the attempt to knock Win10 in this article, when the article was pretty much on Windows side this time. I did add the bit in parentheses that the paragraph that I alleged was anti-Win10 really wasn’t, and that this wasn’t a Win10 hit piece. I didn’t want people to think I might be seriously thinking that the RPS staff were grinding their teeth at being forced to choose which side to go after.

  21. wyrm4701 says:

    So, Win 10 is a massive invasion of privacy, reserves the right to remove software it deems unsanctioned, and won’t play a huge number of games that use the previous generation of legal DRM. Does RPS stand by it’s endorsement of Windows 10?

    • Gnoupi says:

      Can’t really blame Microsoft for that, though. You can’t expect endless backward compatibility.

      • LionsPhil says:

        Well, you kinda used to be able to. Microsoft were pretty much the #1 game in town for Never Breaking Existing Applications (up to an including giving legacy applications their own private filesystem overlays so they can think they’re still scribbling everywhere).

        It’s not unreasonable to complain if this slips to “eh, people’ll deal if we break stuff”.

    • Brtt says:

      I’m not too bothered by the neutering of those old-school DRMs, but I too found it kinda cute that on one hand they care about our security, yet on the other they crush our privacy.

      I suppose it helps to have so many braindeads not caring about it… “Ooooh, new Windows, shiny. Me wants. Me no cares what inside, what strings attached“.
      Just like Steam, come to think of it.

  22. asdfasdfasdf says:

    What the hell?

    I’m using Windows 10 right now and I’m playing GTA 4 with no problems. (GTA 4 used SecuROM).

    I also have GTA 3 via Steam and it’s working perfectly, too.

    Where did RockPaperShotgun get this BS information from?

    • Graham Smith says:

      Among others, the Microsoft rep linked within the post.

      i) There are many different versions of Securom.
      ii) Steam and most digital distribution services use different, modern, or no DRM, which is also referenced in the post. “Disc-based” is right there in the first paragraph.

      • asdfasdfasdf says:

        I have GTA 4 on disc.

        GTA 3 I have on Steam.

        Couldn’t you have waited a little bit longer before making this article? Read the other comments. What is with this Windows 10 hate train?

        First, people think Microsoft can prevent you from playing pirated games (when in reality it was pirated “apps” from their Windows Store), and now, people think Microsoft prevents you from playing games with SecuROM.

        Really?

        • Shadow says:

          How does your comment counter Graham’s statements or the article?

          SecuROM has existed for over 10 years. GTA4’s version is likely recent enough not to fall into this Windows 10 incompatibility. As for GTA3, given you have the Steam version, that DRM has likely superseded the older one present in disc versions.

          • asdfasdfasdf says:

            GTA IV is from 2008, the age of SecuROM and Games for Windows – LIVE.

            I’ll have you know I also have Vice City on disk, but I don’t have it installed.

            Lastly, I also have Flight Simulator 2004, a SecuROM title, on disc, and it works just fine in Windows 10.

  23. Diziet Sma says:

    Hmm, this might be a hint for me. I recently discovered that Battle Isle 4 : Incubation doesn’t work at all any more on Windows 10. The only game so far (hopefully first and last though I am currently building an old machine purely for retrogaming). I’ve tried all sorts of DX and Voodoo shenanigans to no avail. Thanks for the heads up.

    • Press X to Gary Busey says:

      Good luck with building your awesome retro PC. I hope you have better Voodoo™ there. ;)

      Personally, Linux has become my best retro PC gaming friend. I’ve managed to run everything I’ve tried from pre-2003 in Wine on Ubuntu, the stuff I’ve not re-bought on GOG.
      I’ll lobby for the PlayOnLinux front-end, it’s super convenient to experiment on a virtual drive for every game so you know exactly what windows components are installed and mess around without risking the system or other games until it works. Then you can just export/import the virtual drive for backup.

  24. aircool says:

    DRM: Kicking the shit out of people who actually pay for their games since the dawn of time!

  25. f0rcefl0w says:

    To be fair, Securom and Safedisc both required a ring-0 (kernel-mode) driver, which you’d basicly have to trust to not wreck shit up at the lowest level of your operating system in order to run your game.

    Good riddance, I say. And all those games are pretty old, and should work fine in a Virtual Machine running Windows XP (Virtualbox has OpenGL and Direct3D support).

  26. ralph9900 says:

    When the Microsoft rep says that everything that ran in Windows 7 should also run in Windows 10, that is false. Some games have worse framerate or won’t work. ut2k4 has a critical error,etc

    They still need to fix those issues, if you want give this a vote:

    link to windows.uservoice.com

    • Asurmen says:

      The UT2004 error is easily fixable.

      Also note the word should and what it means.

  27. malkav11 says:

    DRM: the opposite of future-proofing. Which, incidentally, is the big reason I’ve always hated the stuff.

  28. OmNomNom says:

    Yeah… Just crack it. If it’s really a problem then run it in a VM

  29. geldonyetich says:

    So basically, agreeing to keep Windows 10 installed is a subconscious admission I’m probably never going to install those games ever again anyway.

  30. racccoon says:

    For the past few days I been trying to replay a beautiful past game FALLOUT 3. I had problems with the update as windows live isn’t really live from the past, plus plants a few nastys in. The game wouldn’t load because of the “ordinal error” how I got around this was to install it normally once done i then copied fallout3.exe & falloutlauncher.exe somewhere else. I then proceeded to use the Official patch 1.7.. after that had installed, I then used windows explorer to copy the copied files back over in admin mode.. which worked, so I could now make a shortcut using the file Fallout3.exe to run the game without that annoying Disc. But, what it did was when I installed the game & official patch, was switch off win10’s Startmenu, Search and my Date n Clock!!. I found a method to cure this teether.
    You have to right click where the Startmenu is.. scroll down or up depending on where you have the taskbar placed,( I have it above) to “Command prompt admin”, once this file is opened, I needed to input words “Powershell” wait for a bit.. then input these words .. Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register “$($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml”} let that run and finish Then my menu n stuff was back on ..
    Also If No “shortcut link” when you go to the desktop and right click to make a “New Shortcut” & its not there anymore?!!?? Just go google for “all_default_file_extentions.zip” download it & open it up use the file ” Default_LNK_(Shortcut).reg ” wait a bit….& your shortcut links should be all back..
    Now.. off you go.. make your shortcut Fallout3.exe and not ever worry about a disc.
    simple really.. lol

    • Zafman says:

      And I thought installing Fallout 3 from disc in Win7 last year was bad enough. Wouldn’t want to do that again any time soon. Kind of makes you wonder where Windows is heading, considering the installation was a darn side easier using PlayOnLinux in Mint 17. I admire your patience and persistence.

  31. Premium User Badge

    Ninja Dodo says:

    I don’t know if it’s Securom but I recently tried to run my disc version of Dreamfall on Win7 and it crashed my laptop. Longest Journey disc also didn’t work but that was just the game crashing as I recall. Ended up getting them on GOG, rendering both retail versions purely decorative.

  32. mr archer says:

    Cuddles his original NOLF – Game of the year – Retail-Box, while gently whispering: “Hush, hush, I will never let go of my Windows XP-Setup.exe. Don´t you cry. And the friendly pirate from da Internetz is always willing to help us. Long may he live!”

  33. TheTingler says:

    I said it then and I’ll say it again now: f*** SecuRom.

  34. skink74 says:

    Good news! MS have backported a fix to earlier Windows versions which means if you updated with the September batch of Windows updates you can’t run your old games on Windows 7 or 8 either.
    link to support.microsoft.com