AirPlay private encryption keys cracked, AirPort meet Shairport

Apple's video and audio streaming protocol, AirPlay, has had its private encryption key cracked which means in the future you might be able to get software, homebrew and open source alike, to do what requires proprietary or licensed devices like an Apple Airport Express or Apple TV to do today. James Laird is the one who reverse engineered the keys and has created an emulator called Shairport:

My girlfriend moved house, and her Airport Express no longer made it with her wireless access point. I figured it'd be easy to find an ApEx emulator - there are several open source apps out there to play to them. However, I was disappointed to find that Apple used a public-key crypto scheme, and there's a private key hiding inside the ApEx. So I took it apart (I still have scars from opening the glued case!), dumped the ROM, and reverse engineered the keys out of it. So, here is ShairPort, an open-source (Perl/C) replacement.

Finding a hardware box that's Wi-Fi enabled, has the appropriate audio or A/V output ports, and can be loaded with Shairport enabled software probably won't be easy, especially immediately, but the hacking community is nothing if not ingenious so it

[mafipulations via MacRumors]

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, Vector, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

AirPlay private encryption keys cracked, AirPort meet Shairport

9 Comments

This is great news. We can now broadcast our video (click link for website) using our iPad2 over the server in the building to all TV's and monitors.
I'm looking forward to the update.

Not sure what all this technical mumbo jumbo means , can some one explain in lay mans terms what benefit can come of this for us customers

FrancoLasalsa, this discovery will allow us to build cheap devices that you can plug into your stereo and stream music from our iDevices to our stereo via WiFi.

I am more interested in the opposite. I have an Apple TV and would like to redirect sound output from any Windows application to my Apple TV. Sort of a virtual sound card. This would be handy for distributing things like Team Speak a through my house.

i would like to see my appletv on a created network that was created from my mac like ALL the other idivices can do

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I'm loving the AirPlay feature. This could lead to something even bigger. For the time being, I'm super impressed and totally satisfied with how well AirPlay works with 3rd-party apps on Apple TV 2nd gen. on its "iOS 4.3.1" as well as iPhone and iPad.