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Central Scrutinizer
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Edit 7/9/02: All movie names have been edited to read "Movie#1"


Since there seems to be quite a bit of interest on how to properly rip a DVD and play it with various software DVD players, I figured I would start this thread. This will be a good place to ask questions, as well as a place to gather information on other techniques. I'll start the ball rolling with my favorite method:


1. Set up a hard drive that you specifically want to keep your rips on, and for the sake of ease in explanation, don't put anything on that drive right now. For this tutorial, we'll assume that this is drive Z: in your system and it is 80 gigs large.


2. On your boot drive, install SmartRipper 2.41, DVDStarter 2.0 beta, ForceASPI, and your software DVD player of choice. Most of these files (all except your sofware DVD player) can be found at www.doom9.net and while you are there, pick up IfoEdit 0.91, which will be used in the next tutorial.


***Edit: The current version of IfoEdit is 0.95. That is the all around best version at this time. (3/5/03)


3. With all tools now properly installed (including ForceASPI), put a DVD in your DVD drive and then start up SmartRipper. SR should now find your DVD and check to make sure that the files are readable. Once SR is ready, a working window will open with the "movie" mode selected by default.


4. Change to the "files" mode where you will see all of the files on the disc. Just under the window, hit the "all" button in order to choose all the files on the disc. Hit the "settings" button on the left and make sure that the "files/backup" tab is selected. Under "key-check" select "every vob-file". Under "VOB file access" select "auto" and under "options" select the first three (region free, unlock drive, and DeMacrovision...do NOT select "create directories"). Hit the "ok" button to come back to the main screen.


5. On your Z: drive, create a dir using the name of the movie. For this example, we will use "Movie#1 - original". (I add the word "original" to my dir names because I will work with them later to compact the size. If you don't care how much room your rip takes up, then just make a dir called "Movie#1"). Now create a subdirectory under "Shallow Hal - original" called "VIDEO_TS". It is very important that this directory is in ALL CAPITAL LETTERS, even though Explorer will not display it correctly. I use Windows Commander as my shell of choice, as I can configure it to display properly, and it is a heck of a lot easier to use than Explorer.


6. Go back to SmartRipper and click on the little box on the left hand side, just below "target". This will open a requestor, and you just make sure that you point your rip to "Z:\\Movie#1 - original\\VIDEO_TS\\" and that is where the rip will go :)


7. Hit "Start" and the entire DVD will be ripped, and ripped properly. If SM finds a propblem, it will report it to you, but 99 times out of a 100, it will successfully rip the entire DVD into the directory that you specified.


Now to set up DVDStarter to play the rip with your software player of choice:


1. Since you've already installed DVD Starter, all you need to do is launch it. If you have WinDVD installed on your system, DVDStarter will launch properly, but if you don't, you will get an error message saying "Can't find file WinDVD.exe". Just hit "ok" and things will continue.


2. Now go to "file/folder settings" and set up DVD Starter for your system. On the left hand side, you will see a list of drives in your system. Highlight "Z:" and then hit the ">>" button. The Z: drive should now be listed in the "movie folders" window.


3. In the "path to WinDVD Program", you will need to enter the path to your software player of choice by clicking on the button to left of that window, and then finding the executable that is installed on your system. In my case it is "C:\\Program files\\TheaterTek\\TheaterTek.exe" (or something like that...I am not at my HTPC right now).


4. Now go to "Drive letter for playing movies" and select a letter THAT IS NOT A REAL DRIVE ON YOUR SYSTEM! This is the virtual drive that will be created, so do not choose a letter that exists already. For example, I have drives B: C: D: E: F: and Z: on my system, so I will choose any letter from G: to Y: and I will be fine. Hit the "ok" button and you are ready to go.


5. In the DVD Starter window, you will now see a list of movies on the Z: drive, which in this case there will be just one entry "Movie#1 - original". There should be a green diamond to the left of the title if all is well. If you have a yellow diamond, the structure is close, but not completely right...you did something wrong in your rip. If there is a red diamond, then it is not even close to being a playable movie...you get the picture.


6. Double click on the movie title, and if you have everything set up correctly, your software DVD player will launch and will play the movie EXACTLY as if it were the DVD itself. Pretty simple, heh?


Notes:


1. When using DVDStarter to launch a movie, make sure that you don't have a DVD in your drive, as the player will launch from the drive as a default and will not look for a "VIDEO_TS" directory elsewhere.


2. If your DVD player launches but doesn't play anything (and you have a green diamond), then you probably set up a virtual drive that already existed as a real drive.


3. You can add more drives to the list just the way that you set up the Z: drive, and or you can specify directories within a drive. Network drives can be used under Win XP, but not under Win 98. I don't know about other OS's.


Later I will show you how to reduce the size of the rip to take up less space on your hard drive, allowing more movies to be "served". We can reduce the size of the rips by 50% or sometimes even more by using IfoEdit. Also, you may need IfoEdit to make certain movies playable, as there may be region coding on the disc. Have no fear, we can fix that too :D


Some of the other experienced people will hopefully also post their methods, as there is more than one way to skin a cat, and different methods will appeal to different people. Any questions?
 

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Hi Bob:


___In my case, I have two methods and looking for a supreme “VideoHot†method so he will quit asking me questions ;)


___I can create a single partition of what ever size with individual movie folders named after the movies title. In these folders, I place the previously ripped video_ts directory using SR in B/U mode. I drag the video_ts directory from the movie directory of choice to the root and launch TT for playback. Afterwards, I can place the viewed video_ts directory back into the proper movie directory for the next drag and drop. In either case, it is not a menu drop down option nor a clean method but works for me without any virtual drive hacks and with a few clicks of the mouse.


___The other method is to create just one 10 GB partition and rip the movie of choice to it. Launch TT and it plays the movie from the HD instead of CD/DVD-ROM drive. If I do not rename the video_ts directory to xvideo_ts or drag it to a directory I name as the movie title itself, TT will always play the rip instead of any inserted DVD unfortunately.


___Andrew will be working on much more refined file playback method but it will be a while I guess …


___Good Luck


___Wayne R. Gerdes

___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.

___ [email protected]
 

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Moderator Note: Hi SmoothImmigrant:


___As Bob mentioned below, discussion of what you propose will get the thread locked … We are already on thin ice as some of these programs are illegal in the USA.


___A note to all ... we should be very careful with this discussion or the thread will be deleted.


___Wayne R. Gerdes

___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.

___ [email protected]



I have DVD Copy Plus which includes Smart Ripper, DVDx, and VCD Easy. It's pretty easy to use and lots of features. In my opinion, think its pointless to waste space for dvd's that you may occasionally watch, although if you have enough space, it's great. *** description of use deleted ***
 

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Central Scrutinizer
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Quote:
I don't find DVDstarter and Force at doom.
At the Doom9 site, hit "downloads" in the left hand column, and then click on the link for "main software page". Scroll down almost to the bottom of the page where you will find a section called "support utils". In that section you will find ForceASPI 1.7.


DVDStarter can be found here:

http://www.digital-digest.com/dvd/do...vdstarter.html


I thought it was on the Doom site. Sorry about that :)


SmoothImmigrant, ... this is all about ripping your own, bought and paid for DVD's to a hard drive to use on a media server. Please discontinue such talk or this thread will be closed.
 

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Smooth,


I think you will find that these forums seek the highest quality playback possible. Encoding, no matter how minimally, results in a reduction in picture quality that is unacceptable to most members of these forums.


Personally, I beleive encoding a DVD as a DIVX or worst yet, VCD is like mutilating art. Its just, unseemly.
 

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Now to the fun stuff.


This is how I backup DVDs I own, or time-shift DVDs I rent.


I use DVDdecrypter and Daemon tools coupled with Daemon UI.


1) I make an ISO image of the DVD with DVDdecrypter.


2) I mount the image using Daemon Tools and Daemon UI. Daemon UI scans your HDs and presents a list of images that can be mounted with Daemon tools with a click. Very remote friendly.


3) When starting a software player it will recognize the mounted image as a disc and play it.


I think I invented this method :)

-------------------------


This is how I reduce the size of a DVD by removing extras and just leaving the main version of the movie with choice of audio.


1) Use DVDdecrypter in IFO mode.


2) DVDdecrypter selects the appropriate PGC. Then, select the video and audio tracks you wish to keep.


3) The resulting VOB(s) (I set DVDdecrypter to make one VOB) can be played by many software players AND the myHD card (excellent PQ and SQ, BTW).


4) Theatertek is "special" in that it needs a DVD structure to play a movie. Hence you need to use a program like IFOedit to recreate the IFO structure out of the naked VOBs. Therefore, TT does play VOBs. It just needs a little help.


5) The resulting folder can be used with DVDstarter as Bob has already reviewed (thanks Bob). DVDstarter is also very remote friendly but less esthetically pleasing (IMHO) than Daemon UI.


A more detailed explanation for all these procedures can be obtained from doom9.org


Cheers,
 

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Central Scrutinizer
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Alric and Xcel have both given excellent alternative methods of accomplishing the same goal, but all of our methods have their individual strengths and weaknesses, and only you can decide which method works best for you.


Since I like to have complete control over the rip, that is why I rip the complete DVD first, and then manipulate it later. With the complete contents ripped into a single directory, I can do whatever I want with it using tools like IfoEdit and VobEdit.


Let's say that you have ripped the DVD into the "Movie#1 - original\\VIDEO_TS" directory, but when you went to play the movie, you got a messgae across the screen that said "This DVD is not formatted for your region", even though you live in region 1 and this is a region 1 DVD (trust me...this happens). IfoEdit can save the day with just a few seconds of work. Launch IfoEdit 0.91 and then open VIDEO_TS.IFO. You will now be able to read all kinds of info regarding the structure of the DVD, but for this purpose, we need to just make the DVD region free. Click on the "region free" button and if IfoEdit finds any RCE coding, it will report it to you and give you a chance to fix it. You will then need to select a region (I don't think it matters which region you select, but I always check region 1, as that is my region) and then IfoEdit fixes the file. Now, you must also hit the "save" button, or your work will not be saved, thus undoing what you have just done. IfoEdit will prompt you to save the same information in the corresponding .BUP (backup) file, and you should save the changes there as well (the corresponding .IFO's and .BUP's should always be identical).


You are not done yet! Now, in order for RCE coding to be effective, there must be at least one other .IFO that is being checked, or the system would not work. Now you must check ALL the other .IFO's in your directory and chances are that you will find at least one other .IFO (or more than one) which has the RCE coding, and you must fix that (or those) file to match the same region code as you entered in VIDEO_TS.IFO (and don't forget to save it!). If IfoEdit does not find any RCE checking, then that .IFO was not coded and does not require any modifications.


These changes sound like a lot of work, but once you do one movie, you will discover that the entire procedure takes less than a minute. Once RCE checking has been removed, your ripped DVD will now play just fine. This is actually a time saver, because you won't need to rip the entire DVD over again.


Later today, I will explain how to reduce the size of the rip down to the bare essentials. I don't need or want my ripped movies to include all of the other languages or audio tracks (I use only the DD 5.1 or DTS tracks), foreign subtitles (though I do like to have English ones available), menus, and extra material that is found on the DVD. I just want the movie to start up right at the studio logo, using my audio track of choice, without having to navigate the sometimes clumsy menus. By stripping out all the unwanted material, you can reduce the size of your rip by 50% or even more. A single sided, dual layered DVD can consume as much as 9 gigs of hard drive space, but that space can be reduced considerably using the techniques I will discuss next. If I really want to watch any of the extras, or need to play the disc in a different language, I always have my original DVD safely tucked away which I can use to access these features.


Stay tuned!
 

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What I realy hate about threads like is that we basicaly inform the studios on how we do things. In turn creating changes in the technology so that it can no longer be done. If they know how things are backed up then they find ways to prevent it.
 

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I've always used a ripper in file mode to copy directly to a folder on my hard drive. I open the video_ts.ifo and watch. I use the h+ since I haven't moved to a HDTV monitor yet (but that should make no difference). This gets rid of any stutter I experienced during playback-which is why I started doing it this way in the first place. To my way of thinking, this has also got to be better on your equipment; certainly it is easier on your DVD-ROM drive...


As for the studios lurking here, do you really think they don't visit the popular rip sites, too...?
 

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Central Scrutinizer
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Quote:
To defeat RCE just install an applet called DVDregion killer. It will never bother you again.
I just downloaded it and tried it....didn't work for me on ripped movies, though it works fine on physical DVD's inserted in the drive.
 

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Hmm,


Strange. For me it works on the virtual drive that the Daemon Tools creates and its mounted images.


Also, I just remembered DVDdecrypter has a specific setting for RCE removal in ISO mode.


Bob, you have to excuse me. I am really a Mac guy and I try as much as possible to spend the least time dealing with the Windows UI.. :)


Cheers,


Alric
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Ok, here's the scoop on reducing the size of the rip and stripping out all unwanted material.


1. Create a new directory in the root of the Z: drive called "Movie#1 - final" and then create a subdirectory called VIDEO_TS (again...ALL CAPS!).


2. Launch IfoEdit 0.91 and open the .IFO file that corresponds to the largest set of files in the directory. This will be the movie itself, and it will take up the most space of any of the sets. A "set" is a group of files with the same name, but different extensions. Thus, VTS_01_0.IFO, VTS_01_0.BUP, VTS_01_x.VOB (where x= numbers from 0 and up) would be a "set". The actual movie will have several .VOB's, the first one being about a gigabyte in size, and the next ones will also be a gig, until the last one, which will probably be smaller. Sometimes there will be a small .VOB in the middle of the set, which usually indicates the layer change. If you scroll down the lower half of the window of IfoEdit, you will see all the chapters listed in order. You can double click on any of the chapters and a small window will open, allowing you to see the contents of that chapter (It will be poor quality, but it is just a viewer).


3. Go to the top menus and open "movie only" and then "strip streams". A new window will open where you can change some options. Leave all of the options and VOB file options at the defaults, as they are preset to do exactly what you want them to do. The only thing you must change is the destination directory. Use the button to the right of the destination directory line and set the directory to read "Movie#1 - final\\VIDEO_TS\\" and then hit "ok".


4. Now a stream list window will open and you can choose which streams to KEEP (not the ones to delete). By default the first audio stream will be checked and the first subpicture (subtitle) will be checked. I always keep the English subtitles just in case there are any foreign languages spoken during the movie where you will need the subtitles to translate for you, and that stream doesn't take up much room anyway. I always check my audio stream of choice (DTS 6 channel or Dolby AC-3 6 channel), and uncheck the others. Leave "correct IFO tables" checked at the bottom of the window. Now hit "strip it" and IfoEdit will do its magic.


When IfoEdit is done, your new directory will contain all new files consisting of VIDEO_TS.IFO, VIDEO_TS.BUP, VTS_01_0.IFO, VTS_01_0.BUP, and the new stripped set of .VOB's starting at VTS_01_x.VOB.


Now launch IfoEdit one more time and open either of the 2 new .IFO's in your new set and then hit the button marked "get VTS sectors", and just answer "ok" to all of the requestors. They will automatically be saved for you. This will correct the pointers that might give some DVD players trouble.


Try playing the new set with your software DVD player, or use the "DVD play" button in IfoEdit (note: You must have a software player installed on the computer that you are using IfoEdit with in order to use the built in DVD player, as it uses decoders from the software player.). If everything plays fine (and it should), then you can now safely delete "Movie#1 - original" directory and files, as they are no longer needed. Your rip will now be reduced to the smallest size possible without re-encoding the movie. The movie will start at the studio logo with your audio track of choice selected (it will be the only one available :) ), and you won't have any menus to navigate, nor any extras available. You can also rename the "Movie#1 - final" directory to just "Movie#1", as the directory name does not change its playability.


If I have time, I will go into more advanced concepts like dealing with multi angles and seamless branching, but these steps I have just outlined will get you through the vast majority of titles. If you are so inclined, play around with the various options available in the menus of IfoEdit. It is a VERY powerful tool which can manipulate the DVD structure in a lot of ways. For more information and tutorials, you can go to the IfoEdit site at:

http://mpucoder.dynodns.net/derrow/index.html


and learn more about the abilities of this fine program.


Good luck and have fun!
 

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One important note about what Bob says about the largest files. We aware of dual Pan/Scan Widescreen versions on the same disk. Open ifoedit and look at the first Ifo of each group to see if the group you want is P&S or Widescreen. It would suck to go through all this hassle then later on find it to be the butchered version.


Also, in ifoedit check the Angles option and the Seamless Branching options. Titles such as Terminator 2 Ultimate Edition has 3 versions of the film all programed with seamless branching. To select the longest cut with more than even the special edition had you would select title 3 and turn off the angles. Angles and Branching will ruin your stripped movie. Leaving you with alternating english/french dialog every other 30 seconds and repeating scenes one longer than the next with added footage.


But... Doom has covered everything mentioned above plus more so I don't see the purpose of rehashing everything.
 

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Just a quick question...


Why do you want to save your dvd's on the hard drive? To avoid the noisy dvdrom? or just to waste space?


I have ripped some of my dvds and moved them onto my laptop from work. Its a great traveling friend, especially with tv-out so I can hook it up with the hotel TVs.
 

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Aaron, if you use Smartripper, you will see the option of which chapters you want to include in your rip. Of course, by default all the chapters are selected. Then you can go to the Stream Processing tab and choose which audio tracks you want. Again, by default all will be selected, so check the box "Enable stream processing."


I couldn't see a way for DVDDecrypter to rip specific chapters. I guess it's good to have both rippers or just Smartripper, since all you are doing is ripping the entire dvd then manipulating with IFOEdit (as Bob has so clearly explained! :) )


I noticed I had ASPI probs when I tried to rip, but it seems Smartripper can still successfully continue with the process. Also, after I installed my Nero burning software, the ASPI-adapter was now available for both rippers.


Only reason I like DVDDecrypter over Smartripper is because it makes the DVD folder for you, saving valuable seconds :p


slobbie
 
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