Microsoft denies Windows Media blocks digital broadcasts


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Microsoft says that there isn't anything in Windows Vista Media Center that would have stopped users from recording two NBC Universal shows earlier this month.

Microsoft said in an e-mail to CNET on Wednesday that Media Center honors flags sent to protect against the recording of pay-per-view channels or video on demand (VOD). The company said that it doesn't prevent the recording of over-the-air digital or QAM digital broadcasts.

"Windows Media Center currently supports and adheres to CGMS-A," a Microsoft spokeswoman said in the e-mail. "Content distributors use CGMS-A in very limited circumstances, such as to protect programs intended for video on demand. Please note that Windows Media Center does not support Broadcast Flag, sometimes referred to as Digital Broadcast Television Redistribution Control, on ATSC and clear QAM."

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