Sony is not getting a good reception over its use of software to block music piracy. Intended to keep Sony's customers from copying CDs more than three times, software quietly installs itself onto consumers' hard drives, but also creates the potential for Internet viruses, slows down some computers and prevents songs from being transferred to an Apple iPod.

"It's extremely disturbing and unsettling that Sony has taken digital rights management to this level of deceit," said Mark Russinovich, a software developer who discovered the program and posted information about it on his blog on Halloween.

Russinovich has received hundreds of comments on his blog reflecting that indignation.

"They're not saying music should be free, they're saying companies should not be able to install something on your computer that you're unaware of and that you have no way of uninstalling," Russinovich said.