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    Back in the day, there was (apparently[1]) some software for Windows 95/98 called ‘Voyager’ which coupled with a standard rs-232 serial cable plus some chips (which guessing now, might have been TTL conversion stuff) wired to the pads of a dummy card, enabled the ‘pirate’ to descramble most of the northern European analogue satellite signals. If the ‘pirate’ also had a 1.2m to 1.5m trackable dish, then almost every channel was accessible. Every so often the encryption method would change requiring an update of the ‘codes’ that Voyager used, but those were usually issued online within a day or so.

    Satellite TV 20+ years ago was a bit like HAM radio - It was an enthusiasts playground. Until all the channels went digital and became harder to crack. The enthusiasts moved on, leaving just the real pirates who were just trying to avoid paying for stuff.

    On the legal side of things, it was always quite exciting surfing the ‘dead’ channels, and stumbling on [unencrypted] raw live outside broadcast footage meant for a TV studio, or test content not meant for mortals to see.

    [1] This is all hearsay, and I deny any direct knowledge or activity.

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      Is the statute of limitations up for this sort of thing? Asking for a friend