Creative enrage fanbase with custom driver comment
"Creative have threatened legal action against a custom driver creator for improving compatibility of their cards in Windows Vista."
Published: 31st March 2008 | Source: Creative |
While most hardware manufacturers know that custom / modded drivers for their hardware get created, they leave it be and sometimes even encourage it. Not Creative though.. They have decided to bash the person whose drivers have more than likely kept many people using Creative products. Phil O'Shaughnessy, VP of Corporate Communications at Creative states:
We are aware that you have been assisting owners of our Creative sound cards for some time now, by providing unofficial driver packages for Vista that deliver more of the original functionality that was found in the equivalent XP packages for those sound cards. In principle we don't have a problem with you helping users in this way, so long as they understand that any driver packages you supply are not supported by Creative. Where we do have a problem is when technology and IP owned by Creative or other companies that Creative has licensed from, are made to run on other products for which they are not intended. We took action to remove your thread because, like you, Creative and its technology partners think it is only fair to be compensated for goods and services. The difference in this case is that we own the rights to the materials that you are distributing. By enabling our technology and IP to run on sound cards for which it was not originally offered or intended, you are in effect, stealing our goods. When you solicit donations for providing packages like this, you are profiting from something that you do not own. If we choose to develop and provide host-based processing features with certain sound cards and not others, that is a business decision that only we have the right to make.
Although you say you have discontinued your practice of distributing unauthorized software packages for Creative sound cards we have seen evidence of them elsewhere along with donation requests from you. We also note in a recent post of yours on these forums, that you appear to be contemplating the release of further packages. To be clear, we are asking you to respect our legal rights in this matter and cease all further unauthorized distribution of our technology and IP. In addition we request that you observe our forum rules and respect our right to enforce those rules. If you are in any doubt as to what we would consider unacceptable then please request clarification through one of our forum moderators before posting.
VP Corporate Communications
Creative Labs Inc.
Just so you can get an idea of the uproar this has caused, at the time of writing this article, that thread has 1,749 posts and has been viewed 227,687 times since Friday morning.
Another reason this has irked so many users is that when Creative rewrote the drivers for its SB Audigy line of soundcards they left out a number of features such as THX options, CMSS2/CMSS Stereo Surround support, DVD-Audio support, DD/DTS decoding and an equalizer. It was alleged that Creative did this on purpose to cripple its older cards and force people into buying its new X-Fi cards if they wanted full support in Vista.
What has really annoyed Creative is that Daniels custom drivers have effectively re-enabled the functionality Creative purposely deactivated as well as improved the stability and the general running of their cards. Had these drivers only helped stability, I very much doubt we would have seen Creative getting up in arms about it.
Most of the threads posts are in support of Daniel_K with many users suggesting that they all boycott Creative products. The first page of the thread pretty much sets the tone of what follows in the next 178 pages.