A couple of questions Re: ripped DVDs - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 139 Old 03-27-2002, 10:09 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi. I am considering ripping some DVDs to my hard drives. I will soon have my home LAN set up. Four quick questions:

1. Will I be able to store the files on my non-htpc running Win XP Home and play them back on my HTPC running Win ME over the LAN? Is it a buggy nightmare?

2. When playing back ripped DVDs, is the full menu system in tact? That is, do they playback exactly as if they were in the DVD drive?

3. Can slow 5400 RPM drives handle the playback, or do I need to be looking into fast drives?

4. How much storage space does a DVD require?

Thanks for any help you are able to provide.

Jeff
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post #2 of 139 Old 03-27-2002, 10:21 AM
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1. Should work fine.
2. If you copy all the files, then the menu will work. Playback is nearly identical. You might not be able to step back frame off the HD version.
3. 5400 drive will work fine.
4. Depends on extras, length of movies, etc. Average is 7Gb per disc. Movies released with extra discs will probably be more.

Read up on this at http: mpucoder dynodns net/derrow/index.html
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post #3 of 139 Old 03-27-2002, 10:27 AM
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Hi Jeffrey,

I have a small collection of ripped DVDs and so I can answer a few of your questions:

1. I play DVDs over my LAN. Host machine is Win2k Advanced Server, client machine is Windows XP Pro. I don't see any problems with your setup.

2. You can either get the DVD software to play the VIDEO_TS.IFO or the individual VOBs. The first option will keep the menu system intact. It depends on what software - PowerDVD4 XP allows you to play the video_ts.ifo, as does Zoom Player. WinDVD has a slightly more complicated process, but it is possible.

3. Shouldn't be a problem.

4. Depends on the length of the film. Typically, it will take 4 to 6 GB. Heres a few examples:

Three to tango: 4.3gb
The Art of war: 4.8gb
Being John Malkovich: 6.73gb
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: 5.62gb
Saving Private Ryan: 7.94gb
The Green Mile: 7.55gb

If you have a region free DVD, it can even be played from a remote DVD rom drive. Secure DVDs don't seem to play in a networked DVD drive unfortunatly.
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post #4 of 139 Old 03-27-2002, 12:55 PM
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Jeff,
I've been testing this stuff myself this week. I've been using DVD Decrypter to rip the entire DVD into one ISO file and then using Daemon Tools to mount the ISO files to a virtual drive on my HTPC. The nice thing about this method is it shouldn't matter which software DVD player you use. The player will run as if it is playing the original disc from the drive.

1. Playback works fine over a lan. I'm using Windows 2000 on both machines.

2. Playback is identical (menu's intact) to having the DVD in the drive.

3. I'm using Maxtor 80 gig drives that run at 5400, no problem.

4. Between 4 and 8 gig per DVD is correct.

This is going to be a lot more popular when hard drive prices drop below $1 per gig. I already have my entire CD collection ripped to my HD. I imagine this time next year I may have my DVD collection saved as well.

-James
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post #5 of 139 Old 03-27-2002, 01:47 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks Everyone!

James- It was your post in the DVDLobby thread that got me interested in ripping the DVDs. It would be so cool to be able to start the DVD without even digging for the disc. For it to work well, the program would have to allow searches of some sort to get to the right title. I think it currently just steps through the collection sequentially. I think Mario would probably accomodate.

Do you know about the software that the member named Stan is writing, titled Digital Theater Pro? It looks really promising, and I wouldn't be surprised if it ends up having the functionality that we are discussing here. At the least, it could launch DVDLobby.

In the other thread you mentioned writing a DVD ripping step-by-step method. Please do!! It would be very helpful to some of us. Looking through all the threads on the different techniques has made my head spin.

BTW, I use the Theater Tek player.

Jeff
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post #6 of 139 Old 03-27-2002, 02:14 PM
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I would love to rip all my dvds on to my hd, but given the large amount of space that one dvd takes up are there really any advantages, or just the cool and convenient factor of having them right there for some software to launch?
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post #7 of 139 Old 03-27-2002, 02:46 PM
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I am looking to write my own pretty DVD launch software, which will run on the HTPC. My initial ideas are

a. To have a search function
b. Some form of automatic DVD profiling
c. Launch DVDs automatically from the HD/network using player of your choice
d. Play those nice THX/Dolby Digital trailers before playing a DVD
e. Rudimentary DVD playback support - to keep things seamless.
f. Be downright cool.

I'm not in any hurry to write it, so your ideas would be most welcome. The software is mainly for myself. I don't like using other peoples software if I believe I could do a better job, and being the stuck up big headed programmer that I am, well you know :)
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post #8 of 139 Old 03-27-2002, 03:23 PM
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There are great guides already available - all the detailed information is in there.

mpucoder dynodns net/derrow/index.html or
www doom9 org/guides.htm
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post #9 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 06:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Slau- That sound interesting. I'd like to use a program like you descride.

windtrader- I couldn't find the mpucoder page, but I checked out the doom9 guide. It deals almost exclusively with manipulating .vob files, but I am really just interested in ripping a .iso in the most efficient wayway. I don't care how much space they take up.

Obiously I am confused. if the above pararaph doesn't make sense, just say so. You won't hurt my feelings ;)

Jeff
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post #10 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 09:42 AM
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Jeff,
Unfortunately I only have a couple minutes to post right now while I eat lunch. I can give you a detailed description of what I 've been doing with DVD Decrypter and Daemon Tools tonight. I've been doing some more testing and I've found some problems/quirks with some of my DVD's ISO files after ripping them with DVD Decrypter. For example, when I try to play back the ISO of "American Beauty" it plays fine with dolby digital selected but freezes up the TheaterTek player when DTS is selected. Hopefully, I can figure out what is going on and come up with a solution for ripping ISO files that will work 100% of the time with all my discs.

I've only been doing this for a few days now. I already wish I had more HD space, simply for testing. I definitely prefer the ISO method as opposed to individual VOB files. I think I/we just need to do a bit more testing.

I'll post again tonight.

-James
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post #11 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 09:48 AM
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The DVDdecrypter/Daemon-tools method has worked for me with all DVDs I have tried. Coupled with Region killer, it also solves the region code enhanced protection problem.

Cheers,
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post #12 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 09:59 AM
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Hi Alric,

How are you? I've read that the latest DVD Decryptor will also create iso files in 4 GB sizes so that people who run 9x/ME can use it also. For those running XP or 2K will not have to use that feature. Have you tried the newest DVDStarter? It is very nice in that it will list all the movies on your hd and you can start the movie just by clicking on it. It works great with my pronto. I have not figured out how to mount and unmount iso image files with Daemon Tools using my remote only.

Are you enjoying your TheaterTek?

Rick
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post #13 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 12:00 PM
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Hey Rick!

Haven't seen you in a while. Yes the latest versions of DVDdecrypter will make 4Gb segments. Because of this I have been contemplating going back to 98/ME and get interlaced resolutions...

I have to try DVDstarter. That might be a reason to switch back to smartripper and edit the ifo files.

If only the D-tools guys would allow mounting the image by double-clicking on it. You could use any file manager to play your movies.

Do you find Smart-ripper/IFOedit/DVDstarter as "fire and forget" as DVDdecrypter/D-tools?

Cheers,
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post #14 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 01:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jeffrey
Slau- That sound interesting. I'd like to use a program like you descride.

windtrader- I couldn't find the mpucoder page, but I checked out the doom9 guide. It deals almost exclusively with manipulating .vob files, but I am really just interested in ripping a .iso in the most efficient wayway. I don't care how much space they take up.

Obiously I am confused. if the above pararaph doesn't make sense, just say so. You won't hurt my feelings ;)
I think DVDDecrypter is what you are looking for. All you have to do is select all files, and rip it to a directory on your hard disk. Then all you have to do is open the VIDEO_TS.IFO with PowerDVDXP and it plays the movie like it is on the actual DVD Drive. I haven't personnely used the Mounting tools but that seems like there are more steps invovled to get what you want. When using DVDDecrypter I even rip the files to my "File" server, then play them back.. Only issue I have is that when I skip to chapters, there is a slight delay over the 100meg hub....
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post #15 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 02:52 PM
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Jeff,
Here's what I've been testing for ripping ISO files with DVD Decrypter and mounting them Daemon Tools. I'll also show how to simplify the mounting process by using a Girder command.

Here's the theory part. I'm using DVD Decrypter to create a file that the PC can see as an exact replica of the info on a DVD. I'm using Daemon Tools to automatically to create a "Virtual" drive on my computer. You can even see it when you click on "My Computer". When I want to play a DVD on the virtual drive I tell Daemon tools to place the file I created with DVD Decrypter in the virtual drive. This fools the computer and the Software DVD player into thinking that a DVD has been inserted and the player automatically starts to play the "virtual" DVD. Does that sort of make sense?

First download and unzip/install Girder, DVD Decrypter and Daemon Tools. For Girder, I selected the "Keyboard" and "UIR/IRman" Hardware plugins. For the other two I didn't change any of the default settings.

http://www.girder.nl/

http://lightninguk.dns2go.com/

http://www.daemon-tools.net/main.htm

Insert a DVD to “back-upâ€;) to the hard drive. If your default player starts, close it. Run DVD Decrypter. In the "Source" window select the drive with the DVD. Select "Mode" -> "ISO" -> "Read R". Press the DVD to HD icon to start copying the DVD to the HD. This part takes about 20 minutes on my PC. Without changing the defaults, DVD Decrypter will automatically choose the HD partition with the most space and name the file with the name of the DVD inserted. Of course, it is also possible to select the destination of the output file. You can even choose to rip the DVD to a folder on another drive on a network.

When DVD Decrypter is finished, close the program.

This next step can be automated by using one Girder command, but for now I’ll explain how you would do it manually. Run Daemon Tools. It should place an icon in your system tray. Right-click the Daemon Tools icon and select "Virtual CD/DVD Rom" -> "Device 0:" -> "Mount image". This opens the Windows open dialog where you can select the .ISO file you just created with DVD Decrypter. On my machine, thats all you have to do. The default player automatically starts the DVD as if it was reading it from the normal DVD-ROM drive. By the way, it doesn’t matter if the ISO file is on your machine or in a folder on a network. Daemon Tools seems to mount it fine. Another way of testing this if your software player doesn't start automatically is to mount the ISO file with Daemon Tools and then open your DVD player and configure your player to select the "virtual drive" as your default drive. Then start playback of the ISO file from the "virtual drive".

Now to eliminate all that stuff in the last paragraph, here's how to set up a command in Girder to automate launching the DVD from the HD. First, open Girder and create a new command. Select the "O.S" tab and choose "Execute". The "File" line wants to have the path to Daemon Tools. You can type this in by hand or use the browse button. The "Step Size" line wants to read -mount 0,"<path of ISO file>" after everything is correctly entered press the "Apply" button.

On my machine the "File" line looks like:

C:\\Program Files\\D-Tools\\daemon.exe

The "Step Size" line looks like this,

-mount 0,"D:EAGLES.ISO"

when I want to play the Eagles DVD from my HD.

Hint: If your DVD player doesn't start automatically right now, try opening DVD Daemon and select "Unmount All Drives" and then re-try the Girder command. You may need to add a second command line switch in the Girder command to make this work consistantly. One switch to unmount the drive and another to mount the drive and start DVD playback. In Girder, that would only change the “Step Size†line to –unmount 0 -mount 0,"<path of ISO file>"

On my machine, the “File†line remains the same and the new "Step Size" line looks like this,

-unmount 0 -mount 0,"D:EAGLES.ISO"

I know this sounds a bit tricky at first, but once you’ve done the process once its easy to repeat.

1. Rip the DVD to an ISO file with DVD Decrypter.

2. Copy the Girder command and simply change the name of the DVD (or the path to your ISO file) on the “Step Size†line.

I’ve been testing this with the TheaterTek player and also PowerDVD 3.0. I should be getting a copy of PowerDVD XP later this week. I’m running Windows 2000.

Please post any comments or suggestions. I’m curious how this works for people running other operating systems and using other software DVD players. Also, please post if some discs work fine and others cause problems. Perhaps we can figure out what may be causing problems for some people with some discs.

Good luck,
James
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post #16 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 03:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Does that sort of make sense?

Yes, I think I've got it now. I'll hopefully get a chance to try it this weekend.

Jeff
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post #17 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 08:44 PM
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Hi Alric,

Quote:
If only the D-tools guys would allow mounting the image by double-clicking on it. You could use any file manager to play your movies.
That would be a great feature. Just associate the iso extension with Daemon Tools to mount it. Great idea :) .

If you want to get back to interlaced resolutions, maybe the next time you want to do a clean install, do a dual boot 9x/XP and you can have the best of both worlds.

One of the reason I like DVDStarter is when I have it autostart with Windows, all my movies are right there in one window. I don't have to browse, mount, unmount and start my favorite dvd player. Ifoedit only takes a minute to use if I need to get rid of the RCE protection.

Jeffrey,

Very nice mini-tutorial on the use of DVD Decrpytor/Daemon Tools. Great information for those who have not used it before. The Girder instructions are great...I will have to try it. Just a question though, are you editing your girder "step size" line with each movie you want to watch? I may have misunderstood your post. With Daemon Tools once you have mounted an iso file and played your movie, you need to unmount and then mount another iso file if you want to watch another movie on another day. To me this seems cumbersome. I don't want to have to edit a Girder file each and everytime I want to watch a movie nor unmount and mount another movie each and everytime. That's one main reason I choose to use DVDStarter. If Ifoedit was not around to get rid of the RCE protection, I would definitely use the iso method for those discs though.

Rick
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post #18 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 09:15 PM
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Check out the DAEMount tool for Daemon Tools. It adds a context menu mount/unmount or you can just double click on iso files and it will auto mount.

Dan.
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post #19 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 09:26 PM
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Rick,
My idea is to have one Girder command per ISO file. So if you have one movie stored as an ISO file on your HD you would only need one Girder command. Say you have 50 ISO files (DVD's) stored on your HD you would need 50 individual Girder Commands. This isn't hard to set up. You would do it when you initially create each ISO, by copying a similar Girder command and simply changing the path in the "Step Size" line. You wouldn't need to edit the Girder commands each time you want to watch a movie.

This method could easily tie into other existing and future DVD database programs. DVDLobby Pro is what got me thinking about this. Another idea is to simply program your pronto with one button for each DVD. It isn't practical if you are going to rip one DVD and then erase it to rip another in it's place, but it will be a nice way of automating playback of DVD's that you want to keep permanently backed up on your HD.

The way I look at it. It's nice to know the technology exists. I'm not going to run out and buy 2 terabytes of hard drives yet to back up my whole collection, but hopefully in the next 6 months to 1 year the prices for hard drives will break the $1 per Gig barrier and then it will become more tempting. I guess I'll have to be a good boy this year and wait for Christmas.

Thanks,
James
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post #20 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 09:40 PM
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Sorry James for addressing my post to Jeffrey (I was responding to your post)

I now understand what you are doing and agree that it is a great and workable idea. My main objective for copying a dvd to the hd is for time-shifting of my rentals so I only have room for about a dozen dvds and the contents fluctuate with time. A true dvd jukebox would definitely benefit from your idea and girder commands. It would be very cool to have the dvd icons on my pronto and just select the movie with girder. Thanks for the tip.

Steely,

I will check into DAEMount. Thanks for your contribution.

Rick
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post #21 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 10:06 PM
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That's it! DaemonUI.

It creates a Window that displays all your iso images. The images can be mounted by clicking on them. It automatically scans for new images.

The Window is very similar to that of DVDstarter. You can get it at the daemon-tools.net site.

Cheers!
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post #22 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 10:15 PM
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Now I don't know which way to handle the dvds :D . That evens out the playing field for me :).

Rick
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post #23 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 10:20 PM
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Rick,

It never ends...;)

An advantage of the iso images would be to not have to edit ifo files. However, I don't know how it behaves over a network, like in your situation.
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post #24 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 10:29 PM
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You're right Alric,

I'm always learning new things on this forum and to interact with fellow forum members like you is always a pleasure. Thanks to all for the learning experience :) .

Rick
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post #25 of 139 Old 03-28-2002, 10:42 PM
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Hi, do you get true DD/DTS sound if rippng dvd into HD of even DVD RW?
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post #26 of 139 Old 03-29-2002, 05:29 AM
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fabryuk,

Yes.
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post #27 of 139 Old 03-29-2002, 11:46 AM - Thread Starter
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Great Info! Just a couple more questions if you guys don't mind.

My HTPC is running Win ME. The "file server" is running XP. I understand that there are limitations on the file size in ME due to the file system structure. (?) Will this cause me problems if playing files from the XP machine, over the LAN, to the HTPC running ME?

Will I not be able to save the jumbo-sized files on the HTPC running ME, or is there some workaround?

Thanks again. Now if I could just buy 120Gb drives for about $100 each...

Jeff
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post #28 of 139 Old 03-29-2002, 05:41 PM
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Jeffrey,

If your XP server is formatted in NTFS, ME will obviously not see the files on your XP server. If XP is FAT32, you will also be limited to 4GB file size limitation. Your ME HTPC is probably FAT32 and subject to the same file size limitation. DVDDecrytor has the option of creating 4GB iso files or you can use Smartripper to back up the VOBs which are 1GB max file size which should not be a problem in ME.

Rick
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post #29 of 139 Old 03-30-2002, 05:57 AM
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I used DVDDecryptor to rip two of my DVDs to a hard drive. They were 'The Last Castle' and 'The Pledge'.
I used Virtual Daemon Manager to map a virtual CDROM.
PowerdVD XP will not play either movie. It displays a message that says "Unsupported File Type in Drive V"
However, I am able to play 'The Pledge' over my network using exactly the same procedure using WinDVD. It won't play 'The Last Castle' however.

Clueless as usual. :)

Framl

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I enjoy 3D in spite of HDMI 1.4!
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post #30 of 139 Old 03-30-2002, 06:40 AM
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Frank,
What operating system are you running on your HTPC? Are the file systems FAT32 or NTFS an the PC's your running?

Unfortunately, I don't have either of the DVD's you mentioned to test on my system, but my copy of PowerDVD XP should be arriving today or Monday from Digital Connection with my new Pioneer 106s drive.

So far the two discs that have given me trouble are "American Beauty" and "Gladiator". Playback starts okay but the TheaterTek DVD player just seems to freeze up after I select which audio (DTS or Dolby Digital) track to use.

Can someone else try ripping any of these DVD's and see if they get similar errors? Maybe we can figure out what the problem is.

Two new questions:

1. Is DVD Decrypter the only program that will rip ISO files like this, or are there others?

2. Does anyone have any ideas on how to create an ISO file of a DVD without copying "PC Friendly" (or other unwanted programs) that are contained on some DVDs? Is there a way to edit or remove this stuff?

Thanks,
James
JamesAB is offline  
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