DVD Ripping

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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.


Ffmpeg is capable to do a direct rip in any format (audio/video) from a DVD-Video .iso image, just select the input as the *.iso image and proceed with the desired options. It also allows to downmixing, shrinking, spliting, selecting streams among other features.


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.


Hybrid is a multi platform (Linux/Mac OS X/Windows) Qt based frontend for a bunch of other tools which can convert nearly every input to x264/Xvid/VP8 + ac3/ogg/mp3/aac/flac inside an mp4/m2ts/mkv/webm/mov/avi container, a Blu-ray or an AVCHD structure.

A package is available in the AUR -> hybrid-encoderAUR

For detailed information visit: http://www.selur.de/


None of the above programs are 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.

See also

  • RIAA and actual laws allow backup of physically obtained media under these conditions RIAA - The Law.