I’m not going to go into the rights and wrongs of DRM, I will say that I’m strongly against piracy and if your intention is to strip DRM for those kind of reasons, kindly go somewhere else for your info. If you’re wanting to strip DRM for a legitimate personal use, such as playing in another media player or an MP3 player other than an iPod - read on!
QuickTimeFairUse is a great little application that takes your .m4p protected iTunes files and captures the decrypted data directly from the memory of your computer. This means that there’s no loss of quality at all from the process! The captured AAC data is then re-compressed into an .m4a unprotected file. That’s not the only benefit either, QTFairUse will also modify your iTunes library to point to the new .m4a file - including keeping all the metadata, album art and play information, so if you’re like me and have dynamic playlists generated by most played or five star rated it will keep them happy! It will back up your .m4p files and library too, so if something goes wrong you can easily revert back - not that I’ve ever had to. It’s also faster than real-time, it takes 5-15 seconds per song on my laptop with plenty of RAM.
The current download version does not support iTunes 7.2.0 (the latest one) so you’ll need to open the config file QTFairUse6.cfg and add the following to the end:
Once you’ve done that, run QTFairUse.exe and select the options that you require. You can scan your entire library or drag and drop files into the window. I don’t change any of the default settings because, well they’re great. The only thing I change is the location of the backup to a folder in My Music called M4P Backup.