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Old 05-15-2011, 01:41 PM   #1
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Ripping non-commercial DVDs???

We've stored most of our family and travel photos electronically and created slide shows with music then burned them to DVDs to save the large amount of disk space these slide shows can consume.

Now, I have installed a 2TB media server and would like to get the slide shows from the DVDs back into any of a number of computer file formats which will allow me to play them through my network.

Does anyone know of a straight forward way to do this without spending big bucks on a new application? Windows Live Movie Maker should do it but keeps crashing. I've down loaded two freeware apps and gotten what I paid for them... both keep crashing.

I'm running Windows 7...

Thanks,

Rick
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Old 05-15-2011, 02:52 PM   #2
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Handbrake is probably the top of the heap right now - it's free and mutli platform. It produces m4v a.k.a. mp4 files from video DVD's. It'll also make mkv containers as well but the default mp4 is usually sufficient.

As for the plethora of container formats and video and audio codecs, ... just stick with the Handbrake defaults as most modern stuff can handle that OK. If need be, download vlc for your platform.

Do note that transcoding from DVD to mp4 can take a while as it is a very compute intensive task. My slower machine does the job barely faster than standard playing speed. What I get, though, is a 5 GB video into a 1 GB file with no degradation in quality I can see.

Handbrake puts each DVD title as a separate job. You select the title and set the name after it scans the DVD. That can be convenient if you are organized and can title things for a good filing system.

If you are having crashes frequently, you may be suffering from an overwhelmed power supply or a heat problem. Video transcoding puts a lot of stress on your hardware.
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Old 05-15-2011, 04:56 PM   #3
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Well,l there is good news and great news.. First the good news.. there is a web site "www.giveawayoftheday.com" gives away DVD rippers from time to time.

Now the Great news: You don't need one. That's right, you don't need one.

You saved the pictures to the DVD's as JPG's right, Just hundreds of JPG's and perhaps a manager to slide them up?

If so you can just use windows copy functions to copy the JPG.s

You only need to rip if you have stored as DVD video (Such as a 2 hour movie) if you have stored JPG or MPG or any of the common windows media/picture formats it will simply copy.. Just like copying from "My Pictures" to "Shared Pictures"

Help if you need it.

Insert the DVD in the computer's DVD drive.. Now chose OPEN or if you have auto start disabled go to MY COMPUTER and right click on the DVD drive and choose EXPLORE.

If you see folders, and or files with the JPG extension,, Just like if you went to MY DOCUMENTS | MY Pictures,, Then the Windows copy command will work.

NOTE: Files will copy with the READ ONLY attribute set.. Don't worry, unless you want to edit them.
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Old 05-15-2011, 06:59 PM   #4
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Thanks so much guys!

I'll check out Handbrake tonight and the give away site as well.

I will certainly need to rip the DVDs. I didn't use them as simple storage devices to hold my jpg files. The jpg's were kept on my computers. The DVDs contained fairly elaborate video slide shows with titles, menus, music, video clips, transitions, etc so it was basically a movie once rendered and I believe it is nearly all in vob format at this time as it resides on the disk and I want to move it to my media server in a format which I can feed directly to my TVs (ie not using a computer) via either ehternet cable or through my DirecTv HD DVRs.

Thanks again...

Rick
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Old 05-15-2011, 07:07 PM   #5
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Rick,
Search for the word "irfanview" without the quotes. It is(was and I think still is) an image viewer program. It will create thumbnails and html formats that can be read by anyone on any platform. (well, it could when I was using it - I now use iPhoto)

p.s., Irfanview is(was) free. It is one of the better program for resizing images without a lot of hassle. It reads 99.99% of all formats.
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Old 05-16-2011, 12:27 AM   #6
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Folks - Rick's photos are no longer single image files (jpgs, etc). They're now movies. So any solution using any kind of image manager or file copy is a no go.

Rick - Handbrake should work fine for you. That's what I used to use.

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Old 05-16-2011, 10:45 AM   #7
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I downloaded and began using Handbrake last night and it works like a champ. I still need to play with it a bit because it seems that I have to convert each chapter from a DVD individually so I end up with a file for each chapter and I'd like a way to bundle them back together so it will play in order just as it did while on the DVD.

Thanks Wayne for the tip on irfanview. I haven't downloaded it yet and it probably won't solve this issue but still looks pretty handy.

Rick
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Old 05-16-2011, 04:22 PM   #8
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Handbrake puts _titles_ as separate files, each of which can have multiple chapters (as well as multiple audio tracks and all sorts of other stuff). This is handy as I can rip my DVD's for travel and play the movie without the warnings, threats, previews and other stuff that DVD manufacturers often insist you see when you play the DVD.

MP4Box can be useful for concatenating mp4 files with identical encoding. I mainly use it for downloaded YouTube videos that come in small chunks. Otherwise, you'll likely need a video editor that will decode and then re-encode the material and that looses a bit of quality not to mention the processing time.
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Old 05-16-2011, 11:40 PM   #9
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Just an update for future generations.....

One of the problems with playing with cutting edge consumer offerings... is that they're certainly not plug and play.

It turns out that I'm able to view mp4 files on my media server directly on my living room tv via a direct ethernet connection to my router. Seems to work very well but bypasses the DirecTv DVR entirely.

However, I think DirecTv is still in beta on their MediaShare function and they can only display mp2 videos at this point! Since my bedroom tv DVR is connected to the network via a wireless adapter, it's going to require that the videos be mp2 to be viewed on that TV.

Thanks again guys...

Rick
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