DVD Ripping

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Summary help replacing me
Discusses various methods and tools used for copying DVDs.
DVD Playing
DVD Ripping
DVD Burning

Ripping is the process of copying audio or video content to a hard disk, typically from removable media or media streams.[1]

Often, the process of ripping a DVD can be broken down into two subtasks:

  1. Data extraction -- copying the audio and/or video data to a hard disk
  2. Transcoding -- converting the extracted data into a suitable format

Some utilities perform both tasks, whilst others focus on one aspect or the other.


dvdbackup is used simply for data extraction, and does not transcode. This tool is useful for creating exact copies of encrypted DVDs in conjunction with libdvdcss or for decrypting video for other utilities unable to read encrypted DVDs.


dvd::rip is a front-end to transcode, used to extract and transcode on-the-fly.

The following packages should be installed:

  • dvdrip: GTK front-end for transcode, which performs the ripping and encoding
  • libdv: Software codec for DV video
  • xvidcore: If you want to encode your ripped files as XviD, an open source MPEG-4 video codec (free alternative to DivX)
  • divx4linuxAUR: If you want to encode your ripped files as DivX (available in the AUR)
# pacman -S dvdrip libdv xvidcore

The dvd::rip preferences are mostly well-documented/self-explanatory. If you need help with something, see http://www.exit1.org/dvdrip/doc/gui-gui_pref.cipp.

Ripping a DVD is often a simple matter of selecting the preferred codec(s), selecting the desired titles, then clicking the "Rip" button.


HandBrake is a multithreaded video transcoder, which offers both a graphical and command-line interface with many preset configurations. The package is available in [Community]: handbrake.


MEncoder is a free command line video decoding, encoding and filtering tool released under the GNU General Public License. It is a close sibling to MPlayer and can convert all the formats that MPlayer understands into a variety of compressed and uncompressed formats using different codecs.[2]

MEncoder is included with the mplayer package. Template:Gentoo


A simple Bash script using MEncoder can be found here.


dvdcopyAUR is a more complex tool available in the AUR that backs up a DVD9 to a DVD5. Has several options for modification.

MEncoder GUIs

If you dislike the command line, or just want access to more of MEncoder's options, then there are several GUI programs available.

The official MPlayer homepage has a comprehensive list of available front-ends here.


None of the above programs is able to rip / encode a DVD to my hard disk!

Make sure the region of your DVD-reader is set correctly, otherwise you'll get loads of unexplainable CSS-related errors. Use regionsetAUR to do so.