I eventually got it working (sort of).
Windows 7 was simply a no-go. I tried everything, and it just died no
matter what. Emulating XP didn't help, making sure everything was
running as admin didn't help, there were no logs or feedback anywhere.
It just died.
However, I gave it a go under Windows 10, and got it to go. The
procedure I had to do was:
1) Unblock Port 103 in Firefox by adding the following line to user.js
in the default profile:
Attempts to jigger the system associations to open the URL with IE,
Chrome, or some other web browser failed. No idea what I was doing
wrong, but even after I changed all the protocol associations for HTTP
and HTTPS, it still came up in Firefox.
2) Under Windows 10, I did not need to manually specify a compatibilty
mode for any of the five executables involved. It worked that out okay
on its own, apparently.
3) Upon launching the SomVer.exe (the file specified in autorun.inf), it
successfully ran, and pulled up an index. BUT ... clicking through to
any other page yielded a screen full of uninterpreted HTML code instead
of an actual web page. So on to Step 4:
4) Read the code and manually copy-and-paste URLs into the location bar
to slowly work your way to the actual file you want.
Once you get that far, the decrypted PDF can be saved to the hard drive
like any other. It's just a supreme pain to get there.
I view this experience as a tidy demonstration of the abject stupidity
of DRM. The chances that this software ever prevented anyone from
illegally copying a bunch of chemical engineering papers is pretty close
to nil. But it has absolutely gotten in the way of legitimate use by
licensed users, namely the patron who wanted to read this paper.
Furthermore, the use of DRM virtually guarantees that the data will be
permanently lost sooner or later. Until I tried it out on Windows 10,
it was looking very much like it would be unrecoverable a mere 11 years
after the disc was produced. I pity anyone who is called on to retrieve
one of these articles forty years down the road when we're on Windows 28
and nobody has seen an optical disc drive in several decades.
I'm tempted to take the time to extract all the PDFs now, while we have
a functioning (if awkward) way to do that, and burn our own damn CD to
stick in the little sleeve in the book. But last time I checked,
bypassing DRM in that manner was illegal under the Digital Millennium
Copyright Act, even if you otherwise have a legitimate license to use
the protected content. Plus it would be a ton of work in the thin,
faint hope that someday somebody will want one of these articles again.
Web Services Librarian
Chester Fritz Library
University of North Dakota
On 2016-04-04 16:03, Lolis, John wrote:
> I don't know what version of Windows you're running, but make sure you
> to launch the executable
> or the command prompt window
> as an administrator
> (even if you're logged in as an admin).
> I imagine that anything that tries to have the system listen on port
> would require elevated privileges with Windows 7 and up.
> I'd also check the event log to see if any clues can be gleaned from it
> apologies if this was obvious to you).
> If you have a system running an older version of Windows (as far back
> Windows 98 from what I saw in the system requirements), try that.
> Good luck. I'd be curious how you make out with it.
> John Lolis
> Coordinator of Computer Systems
> White Plains Public Library
> 100 Martine Avenue
> White Plains, NY 10601
> tel: 1.914.422.1497
> fax: 1.914.422.1452
> On Mon, Apr 4, 2016 at 1:33 PM, Will Martin <[log in to unmask]>
>> We've got a copy of this book of abstracts for presentations at a
>> engineering conference in 2005:
>> It's got a CD-ROM included with the full papers for hundreds of them,
>> now we have a patron who wants to consult one of them.
>> Unfortunately, we can't get the dang thing to work. The files on the
>> are encrypted. There's a utility which is supposed to decrypt them,
>> but it
>> doesn't work. When you run the program, it starts a web browser and
>> to localhost:103. After that, it times out and reports that it's
>> to connect. Yes, I disabled the Windows firewall completely and tried
>> in multiple browsers.
>> There are several little executable files on the CD, all of which
>> to do the exact same thing -- open a failed connection to
>> Executing them from the command line yielded no useful information,
>> using command-line switches like -h, --help, /?, and /h. None of them
>> any help text, though a few produced badly written HTML output
>> they couldn't access things, or that they were corrupted. I take that
>> an indication that my wild-ass guessing at their purposes and usage
>> wrong, rather than actual file corruption.
>> I've sent an email to the company that made it (they're still around!)
>> thought I'd ask here also. Any insights?
>> Will Martin
>> Web Services Librarian
>> University of North Dakota
>>  Firefox blocks port 103 by default. To get by that you have to
>> manually enable port 103 by putting
>> user_pref("network.security.ports.banned.override", "103"); in your
>> profile's user.js.