Anyway, if you're reading this, chances are you have a good reason to want to know how to copy a DVD. So let's get on with it.
Copying a DVD - The ProblemsDifferent formats. Most commercially produced movie DVDs are in fact DVD-9 discs which contain more data than the standard DVD-R disc can hold. Thus direct copying is typically impossible because the movie simply won't fit on the writable DVD. The solution is to "transcode" the movie making it smaller. There are various applications that can do that (more on this later).
Copy protection. Most commercial DVD movies are encrypted, scrambled and otherwise protected to prevent anyone from copying them. For a long time the most popular solution was to use a program called DVD Shrink, which could both decode the video, compress it to fit on a DVD-R and burn a DVD (with help of other programs). However, DVD Shrink hasn't been updated for a long time and can't handle modern copy-protection mechanisms. There's still a way though.
How To Copy Any DVD Movie1. Download and install AnyDVD. It's a driver that will remain in background and transparently decode any DVD you put in your computer. Other programs will see the DVD as if it had no copy protection or encryption, making it easy to copy the disc. It also has many other features but the best part is that AnyDVD is updated regularly so it can recognize most protection schemes and remove them.
2. Copy the DVD using any software you want. There are many possibilities -
- Nero Recode, part of Nero 7 software pack. Very easy to use and well known in the industry, but it's a commercial application (with a trial version available).
- DVD Shrink (+ some tutorials that explain how to copy DVD movies). With the encryption neutralized, DVD Shrink can again copy any disc, plus it's freeware. Note that you will need another application to burn the copy; DVD Shrink can use Nero and some other programs to do this automatically. You can find details on the site.
- Clone DVD (+ a tutorial). Another popular application written by the same people who made AnyDVD. This one is shareware.
That's the basic stuff you need to know about how to copy a DVD. Well, there are other types of DVDs (like games or data discs) that you might need to backup, but that's a topic for another post ;)