First it was Windows 10 saying "no" to SafeDisc and now older versions of Microsoft's operating system will give the copy protection its marching orders. An update released this month will automatically disable SafeDisc's underlying driver file, rendering most games that use it inoperable.
In a bulletin from 8 September, Microsoft warns that SafeDisc's core system driver, a file called "secdrv.sys", poses a security risk. While it's already been nixed in Windows 10, up until now it was still functional in Window 7, 8 and Vista. Update KB3086255 however changes the situation by shutting down the service and preventing it from starting automatically.
Of course, if you have any games that require SafeDisc, they'll stop working. As a temporary measure, Microsoft explains how to restart the service via the Windows command line:
sc start secdrv
If you just want it to start at every boot, here's the line you need:
sc config secdrv start=auto
As you'd expect, it's not something Microsoft recommends, but other than cracking your game's executable, you don't have much choice if you want to play older titles that use SafeDisc.
Image: jenny w.