Most drives manufactured after January 1st 2000, and some drives prior
to that are installed with something called RPC2.
When a drive is RPC2, it means that it stores the Region code
physically within the drive. This means that nothing you do on the
software level will be of any help (including using DVD Genie or
formatting your hard drive).
The only means of bypassing this Regional Protection Scheme is by
using a firmware (or Drive-BIOS) patch. A firmware patch is a special
piece of software written for a specific DVD Drive model. It will only
work on that specific model.
The original role of the firmware patch was to fix minor flaws in the
drive logic (a piece of programmable software within the drive, also
referred to as a "Firmware"). This logic also controls the Region
Checks, so some inventive programmers have modified these firmware
patches to remove the portion of logic that does the Regional checks,
thus making the drive region-free (RPC1 stands for region free).
However, since a firmware patch is specific to one drive model, it's
impossible to make a global fix for all drives on the hardware level.
This limitation requires programmers to modify each firmware patch
that comes out for various drives. And here lies the problem.
Modifying a firmware is not a simple task- it requires a high level of
knowledge about the hardware and some advanced programming skills. To
top this off, there are quite a few DVD Drive models out there, and
not as many programmers with the skill that can access these drives.
So in reality, not all drives have firmware patches that can make the
drive region free.
So some foresight is required when buying a new DVD Drive. You should
check if someone already released a patched firmware for the model you
wish to buy.
Important Technical Information:
RPC1 = Drives/Patches that are Region-Free (no checks in hardware).
RPC2 = Drives/Patches that are Region-Locked (checks the region-code
Checking your drive's RPC state:
Not all drives are region locked, especially older drives. Drives that
come as RPC1 (see above) from the factory do not need any firmware
patch. But please note that almost every new drive today comes as RPC2
The following procedure is the method used to check if your drive is
RPC1 (region free). You should also use it after applying a firmware
patch in order to test if the patch is successful.
The first thing you need to do is download a small utility called
Drive Info, this utility queries the drive's hardware to see if it is
RPC2 (region locked). To download Drive Info, click here.
Before running Drive Info, make sure you have a region-specific DVD
disc in the drive. After running drive info you should be prompted
with a small screen to select which drive to test (if you have more
than one DVD or CD drive installed). Select your DVD Drive from the
list, once selected (or if it was selected from the start), Drive Info
should inform you of the current state of the drive.
RPC1 (Region Free)
RPC2 (Region Locked)
As you can see, the drive on the left is indicated as RPC1 (Region
Free), while the drive on the right is indicated as RPC2 (Region
Locked). You can see that the RPC2 drive does allow for up to 4
changes. You can also see that it is currently set to Region 1, which
means it won't play other regions unless a DVD Player software will
change it's region (which deducts a number of change counter). Once
all 4 changes are made, the drive will lock on the final region set.
If Drive Info reports an ASPI error, it means a Windows DLL is missing
and the check can't be performed. To fix this problem, read this entry
from the "Frequently Asked Question".
After correctly applying an RPC1 patch, your drive should appear like
the left image, if it does not, it means that drive was not patched
Downloading Firmware Patches:
The best page to find the most updated firmwares (both RPC1 and RPC2)
is "The Firmware Page". You can access it by going here, or if it
doesn't work, try this link.
You should also be able to get good results by using Google to search
for "The Firmware Page", or specific firmwares.
Re: Firmware Patches
"Ablang" <email@example.com> wrote in message
> Firmware Patches
This is one of these click through advertising scams.
If anyone is really interested in this here's the proper link without all
Re: Firmware Patches
"Stephen Stewart" <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote in message
> "Ablang" <email@example.com> wrote in message
>> Firmware Patches
> This is one of these click through advertising scams.
> If anyone is really interested in this here's the proper link without all
> the crap.
Don't trust anything posted on newsgroups. Look for reliable confirmed
references on established forums at videohelp.com, cdfreaks.com,
digitalfaq.com, imgburn.com, etc.
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