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Old 09-22-2009, 05:07 PM   #1
Elfwreck
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Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: SF Bay Area, California, USA
Device: Clié; PRS-505; EZR Pocket Pro, PRS-600, Kobo Mini
DNL DRM (ebook.com)

This started as a reply to a post in another thread; it got complex enough that I thought it was worth its own post.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eBook Ivor View Post
G'day eBook'ers
wondering if anyone has tried reading a DNLeBook?
there are plenty for free on www.ebook.com
could you give us some suggestions please?
cheers,
Ivor
Info about the DRM method is at their DNL DRM Ebook DRM, Ebook Security page.

1) The free ebook I downloaded (pre-SAT reading-writing guide) allowed printing, including to PDF. While the resulting image came out at 112 DPI, that might be adjustable, and in any case, print-to-PDF means "not DRMd."

2) Looks like it's intended to only be readable in a web browser, even if offline. They may not be available for portable devices at all. (Nevermind e-ink; looks like they won't work on PDAs or cellphones.)

3) Could only read 5 pages (and print 5 pages) before it told me I needed an "activation code."

Fill out form for activation code. It demands a phone number (!!) along with email address. Give phone number that hasn't worked for 15 years; get a notice that my activation code has been sent to my email, pls fill it in above.

BROWSER IS FROZEN until I close the activation code dialog box. Even opening another case of Firefox got me a browser I could click in, but not select text. Wow. Amazingly annoying code, that.

Re-open book & click to go to a page that demands activation code. Get popup. Fill Activation Code (AC) in the box; check the box for "activate on USB Memory Stick," since I saved the book on my portable hard drive.

It demands a USB memory stick. Apparently, portable drive is not close enough. Shrug. Uncheck box & try again. No, cancel that attempt, open book again, flip to a page that demands activation & try again. I didn't see a "click here to authorize" button until I ran into a page that wouldn't open.

Typography is awful. No way to tell if that's this particular free book, or if all the DNL books look like they were formatted by Usenet fanatics. Can't copy text; it's an image. It's arranged like a book--two pages, side-by-side, and they "flip" when you change the pages.

It has quiz parts. Multi-choice questions, with link to show answers; extra features not available in most ebook readers. A plus for academic & study books like this one.

After activation, the copy I downloaded before activating also worked.

After activation, the copy I downloaded before activating also worked.
So did opening up the book again from the website. So did opening it with Internet Explorer. Have to wait until I get home to find out if it'll work on an entirely different computer.

No indication that I can't/shouldn't openly share the activation key I got. (However, I may have clicked past something in the EULA--although I don't remember a EULA stage for the installation.) The DNL program seems to be a browser attachment that works on both Firefox & IE.

From the DRM info page:
Single Device Activation ONLY ! We protect your eBooks against illegal distribution.
Consumer can reinstall on the same device multiple times
So... can't read it on home computer & laptop, possibly? That's an exceedingly un-useful arrangement. And there was no warning when I sent for the activation code that "this code will only work on the computer it's first used on"--which would be very frustrating for people working at library or other public computers.

More experimenting later. (Or possibly not; there's a limit to how much time I care to spend thinking about new ways to not let me use what I've bought.)
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