First, allow me to apologize to members and mods if this has been covered, I parsed through the first pages and was unable to find an answer to my questions.
Let me tell you where I am at and where I want to go. I am setting up a HTPC system for my new house. The backbone is a Thecus linux box with 3 TB usable storage. I have build a top end HTPC that is going to sit next to it, and it needs to serve these purposes:
1. Rip DVD's to disk
2. Compress said DVDs
3. Catalog the DVDs
4. Playback the DVD's to my high def 50 inch tv.
5. I would love to use this as my Tivo, as I just have a series 2 box currently, and don't want to buy a series 3 just to record in high D.
I was told I should be able to compress the 4 G dvd's to about 1 gig.
What software should I employee to accomplish these goals? Freeware or paid programs both are fine, whichever works the best.