DVD Playing

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Revision as of 23:50, 11 June 2011 by Egan (talk | contribs) (MPlayer)
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DVD, also known as Digital Versatile Disc or Digital Video Disc, is an optical disc storage media format used for video and data storage.[1]


If you wish to play encrypted DVDs, you must install the libdvd* packages.

# pacman -S libdvdread libdvdcss libdvdnav

Additionally, you must install player software. Popular DVD players are MPlayer, xine and VLC.

Tip: Users may need to belong to the 'optical' group to be able to access the DVD drive:
# gpasswd -a USERNAME optical

Don't forget to re-login the user for the changes to take effect. You can see your user's current groups with Template:Codeline command.

DVD players

See also: Common Applications#Video


MPlayer is efficient and supports a wide variety of media formats (i.e. almost everything). To play a DVD with MPlayer:

$ mplayer dvd://N

...where N is the desired chapter number. Start at 1 and work up if unsure.

Mplayer checks /dev/dvd by default. Tell it to use /dev/sr0 with the -dvd-device option at the command line, or the dvd-device variable in ~/.mplayer/config.

To play a DVD image file:

$ mplayer -dvd-device movie.iso dvd://N

To enable the dvd menu use (NOTE: you use arrow keys to navigate and enter key to choose):

$ mplayer dvdnav://

To enable mouse support in dvd menus use:

$ mplayer -mouse-movements dvdnav://

To find the audio language, start MPlayer with the Template:Codeline switch to output audio IDs. An audio track is selected with Template:Codeline. Set a default audio language by editing Template:Filename and adding the line Template:Codeline for English.

With MPlayer, the DVD could be set to a low volume. To increase the maximum volume to 400% use Template:Codeline and Template:Codeline. The startup volume defaults to 100% of software volume and the global mixer levels will remain untouched. Using the 9 and 0 keys, volume can be adjusted between 0 and 400 percent.


MPlayer home page


A capable player with a simple GUI, installed with:

# pacman -S vlc

VLC home page

Tip: To make VLC the default DVD player in GNOME, edit Template:Filename and at the bottom of the file add:

Then, as root, run:

# update-desktop-database /usr/share/applications
Finally, open System > Preferences >> File Management >>> Media and next to DVD Video select Open VLC media player.


A lightweight media player supporting DVD menus.

xine home page