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Riplock is a firmware "hobbling feature" of some computer DVD-ROM drives that significantly slows (throttled back) the drive transfer rate when reading and writing DVD-Video data, typically to 2×-4× on drives that otherwise (as of mid-2005) could read at 8× or 16×. Proponents argue[who?] that this restriction in performance reduces the amount of noise when the drive is playing a DVD by providing the lowest rotational speed that allows for adequate data transfer from the DVD to the computer.
Doubt is cast on this argument[by whom?] when it's pointed out that its real objective is to limit both the reading and writing (burning) of DVD video to the DVD media as an attempt to restrict video piracy. For example, Riplock does not affect the reading or writing to CD media transfer rates nor does it affect the rates of non video data being written to DVD media. This lends support to the theory that the MPAA has used its influence with different manufacturers to disable full functionality on consumer level CD/DVD drives specifically targeting DVD video files.
This slow speed and low data rate hobbles the drives functionality and greatly increases seek find times, general performance and specifically write times (to an hour or more). On some riplock-equipped drives, riplock can be removed by firmware reflashing by the drives firmware (referred to as "read speed patch" or "riplock patch"). It can also be disabled on some drives such as the Lite-On model iHAS324B by pressing the eject button for three seconds without any disc inserted.
- After Dawn. "After Dawn glossary riplock". Retrieved 2013-03-24.