VLC HowTo/Rip a DVD

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This page describes how to create a video file from a DVD using VLC. Other "how to" pages

You can use VLC to rip a "raw" video file from a DVD, or you can use VLC to create a condensed "transcoded" video file from a DVD. This page mostly deals with using it to rip a raw video file from the command line.

Here is an example. You'll need to type this at the command prompt (windows) or terminal (linux), all on one line. You may also need to give the full path to vlc (ie, replace vlc with "C:\Program Files\VideoLAN\vlc\vlc.exe", or wherever you installed vlc)

This is how to rip the "raw" video from a DVD, assuming you want to rip your DVD's title "1" to filename dvdout.mpg, from drive dvd:\

   $ vlc dvdsimple://d:\@1 --sout "#standard{access=file,mux=ts,dst=dvdout.mpg}" vlc://quit

the vlc://quit at the end just tells it to exit after ripping. You can also add a --qt-start-minimized, if desired.

Note that the above doesn't do any transcoding on the video stream, it just basically dumps a verbatim copy to your hard drive. In comparison with other ripping programs, this is sometimes lacking a few frames from the original (up to 10), but is typically pretty accurate. If you want one that is even more accurate, use mplayer's dumpstream or makemkv.

You may have some luck ripping the DVD from the GUI, as well, though this is a bit tricky [1]. See also note at bottom. Using the GUI may help if you want to both rip and [transcode] simultaneously, as the above commands only do a raw copy. Recommend using handbrake if you want to do transcoding too. NB that if you use the GUI you will need to name your output filename with the correct extension for your mux type or VLC will silently ignore your request to convert the stream on the DVD, and just display the video instead. Silently, mind you. (If it is working right it won't show you a video by default). You will also need to check the 'no DVD menus' option, which instructs it to use dvdsimple:// instead of dvd:// which loops back to the main menu after playing the title.

If it stops halfway through, cleaning your disc might help. If it still fails half-way through, it may work better to use dvd:// (in the GUI, that's not check 'no DVD menus') instead of dvdsimple:// but this is probably not a good option as it never stops but loops back to the main menu forever so you will have to stop it manually by monitoring it. Recommend mplayer's dumpstream in this case.

  $ vlc dvd://d:\@1 --sout "#standard{access=file,mux=ts,dst=dvdout.mpg}" vlc://quit

It might also help to set the cacheing value either higher or to 0 (in the GUI: under advanced options).

OS X example (you may be able to use dvdsimple:///Volumes/volumeName as well).

 $ /Applications/VLC.app/Contents/MacOS/VLC dvdsimple:///dev/disk1@1 --sout #standard{access=file,mux=ts,dst=dvdout.dvdsimple.vlc.mpg}



Handbrake is a free user friendly open source tool for ripping DVD's and transcoding (condensing) the output. It uses VLC by default for ripping if installed on OS X. For windows users handbrake can also use VLC's libdvdcss if you first install it.

Mplayer is also a good option for ripping a raw mpeg stream from a DVD. Here's an example (title 1, dvd on d:\):

 $ mplayer -dumpstream dvdnav://1 -nocache -dvd-device d: -dumpfile dvdout.mpg

MakeMKV is also good for ripping a DVD or blu-ray to a raw mpeg file. To select certain titles, count down from the top of the checked title options. The first one at the top is "title 1." You could then convert it (condense/transcode it) after using handbrake or VLC.

If you want to convert makemkv's output to an mpeg file (mpeg-ts) then you could use tsmuxer.