After I build my AppleTV hard drive from Scratch, I did some hacking so my AppleTV now can play any file formats and use external USB hard drive to store media (500GB). The big problem occurred when I rented “I am a legen HD” from iTunes and tried to play on my AppleTV (connected to Acer LCD). There is an error said

“This content requires HDCP for playback.

HDCP isn’t supported by your HDMI connection.
Use the component video connection to watch this content.”

So I desperately cannot watch my rented movie unless I change my expensive HDMI to cheap Component cable. I don’t want to mess up with my cables which are quite difficult to reach, so I did a little google and found out that they are many similar cases over the net. I tried many thing but finally this is the step that works for me.

We need to update HDMI controller in AppleTV. Here are the steps.

  • Go to http://mesu.apple.com/version.xml with Firefox (does not work on my Safari)
  • Use Firefox to download 2 files (These file might change upon AppleTV firmware version)

hdmiutil
FW29050_20080205_dse_hex.sihex

  • Copy those two files to AppleTV
  • Use Terminal to run this command

$ chmod +x hdmiutil
$ chmod +x FW29050_20080205_dse_hex.sihex
$ ./hdmiutil FW29050_20080205_dse_hex.sihex

  • Terminal should respond with this message


hdmiutil - HDMI Flash Utility Version 1.1000 (Mac)
For Programming Silicon Image's SiI1930 (DVI-HDMI) microcontroller.
Copyright (C) 2006-2008, NVIDIA Corporation. All Rights Reserved.
Using default I2C configuration on Mac platform.
Temporarily disabling hotplug interrupt processing...
Firmware Filename: FW29050_20080205_dse_hex.sihex
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!! Do not interrupt power or hotplug displays during flashing process. !!!
!!! This might take a while to complete (approx 5 min for each file) !!!
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Sector Erase 0%........10%.......20%........30%.......40%........
50%.......60%........70%.......80%........90%......100%
Programming 0%..........10%..........20%..........30%..........
40%..........50%..........60%..... (goes till 100%)
OK - file FW29050_20080205_dse_hex.sihex firmware flashed successfully!
Re-enabling hotplug interrupt processing...

  • After unplug and re-plug, your AppleTV should be able to play rented HD movie.

Enjoy ^_^