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Step-by-Step Guide: How to Unprotect iTunes Songs

By Zoe Clarke

December 07, 2017

Songs you purchased from iTunes Store are protected by Apple FairPlay Digital Rights Management before 2009. Those restrictive songs can't play on the unauthorized computer. At Macworld Expo of 2009, Apple finally decided to drop DRM from the iTunes music library. But songs purchased before this decision are still wrapped in DRM. If you want to liberate the purchased music from DRM restriction, I can provide you ways to unprotect iTunes songs.


CONTENT


Part 1. FAQs of DRM-ed & DRM-free iTunes Songs

Q1. What is DRM-ed iTunes Songs?

Purchased media files including music, videos, audiobooks are usually encrypted with DRM (Digital Rights Management) for legally and efficiently protecting digital contents. All songs purchased from iTunes Store are encrypted with DRM before 2009.


Q2. What is DRM-free iTunes Songs?

Songs purchased from iTunes Store these days are in the iTunes Plus format: M4A. They aren't encrypted with Digital Rights Management protection and the bitrate of the downloaded music is twice the resolution of the original iTunes standard.


Q3. How to Identify What Songs Have DRM Protection?

In your library, use "Songs" view, and look at the "Kind" column for ones with the word "Protected". If you do not see Kind, enable it by going to "View > View Options".

Identify iTunes Songs on View Options

Q4. Does Lack of DRM Mean that I Can Copy iTunes Songs Unlimitedly?

No, copyright law is still in effect. DRM can't give you a flexibility to judge what's right and what's wrong. But lack of DRM can help you do this.


Q5. Are There Ways to Upgrade Old DRM-ed Songs?

Yes, but not free updates. Apple allows you to upgrade songs to iTunes Plus by charging you a $0.30 fee for each song. But that option disappeared quietly when iTunes Match was launched in 2011. Therefore it is not possible to upgrade old DRM-ed songs to iTunes Plus now.


Part 2. How to Unprotect iTunes Songs

However, even if iTunes DRM-ed songs can be upgraded, you are still unable to copy iTunes songs whether they are protected or not. So, we need TuneFab Apple Music Converter to assist us in unprotecting iTunes songs. This is a professional software to convert M4P to MP3 legally. As you know, MP3 songs are flexible to copy for sharing.


It features:

* Convert Apple Music M4P songs to high quality MP3 tracks;

* Easy-to-use and fast conversion;

* Transfer AA/AAX/M4B audiobooks to MP3;

* Keep meta data info after conversion.

Next I will show you how to unprotect iTunes songs with the help of TuneFab Apple Music Converter in 3 steps.


Step 1. Select Songs That You Want to Convert

Launch TuneFab Apple Music Converter and iTunes will pop up automatically. In the interface of playlists, click "Library" to select songs one by one or a whole album.

Select Apple Music Songs

Step 2. Set Output Format

Click "Output Format" and from the drop-down list, select MP3. From the right side, you can adjust codec, bitrate, sample rate, channels.

Screenshot Select Output Format

Step 3. Convert DRM-ed iTunes Songs to MP3

Make sure all parameters you've set meet your requirements. Then tap "Convert" to start converting.

Start Converting Apple Music Tracks


This all the processes of unprotecting iTunes songs. After successfully converting, you can gain iTunes songs in the format of MP3, which DRM protection is removed by TuneFab Apple Music Converter . Now, you can try it and copy iTunes songs to various devices via USB drive and share with your families and friends.


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