Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Ubuntu Linux - DVD Ripping Fun n' Games

I recently upgraded my home PC ( Orac ) to Ubuntu 12.04 ( Precise Pangolin ), having been running a much older version ( 10.04 ) for some time.

Prior to the upgrade, I'd been able to "rip" DVDs to various movie file formats, including MP4 and AVI, since the move to 12.04, I was finding that the display quality was TERRIBLE, with the picture breaking up on almost every frame.

I saw this problem with Handbrake, which I'd previously used, both on Ubuntu and OS X, and also with AcidRip and Thoggen.

I knew that the hardware was OK, so that left the software.

Given that the problem affected three different ripping packages, I wondered what else might be broken / missing.

In the back of my mind, I remembered an Ubuntu library that I'd needed to install / use whilst I was running 10.04 - the library name was libdvdcss.

I Google'd around, and stumbled upon this rather useful page: -


which says, in part: -

Installing libdvdcss

Legal Warning: Check with your local laws to make sure usage of libdvdcss2 would be legal in your area.

Ubuntu 10.04 (i386, amd64), 10.10, 11.04, 11.10 and 12.04 (i386, amd64)

Works for old releases that are no longer supported if you have repositories on Cd/Dvd or somewhere. So, anything from 9.04 onwards. The latest LTS, 10.04, and the radically different 11.04 also work this way.

1.    Install the libdvdread4 package (no need to add third party repositories) via Synaptic or command line:

sudo apt-get install libdvdread4

2.    Then open a terminal window and execute:

sudo /usr/share/doc/libdvdread4/

3.    Rebooting may be necessary.

Having verified that I already had the required library - I chose the full-fat installation of 12.04: -

$ sudo dpkg --list  | grep -i dvdc
[sudo] password for hayd:

ii  libdvdcss2                             1.2.12-0.0medibuntu1                    Simple foundation for reading DVDs - runtime libraries

I reckoned that I'd missed the second step.

I checked the recommended documentation directory: -

$ ls /usr/share/doc/libdvdread4/

AUTHORS  changelog.Debian.gz  copyright  README  README.css

and then ran the script: -

$ sudo /usr/share/doc/libdvdread4/

--2012-08-29 18:43:59--
Resolving (
Connecting to (||:80... connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 200 OK
Length: 7942 (7.8K) [application/octet-stream]
Saving to: `/tmp/dvdcss-cOHKyE/Packages'

100%[============================================================================================>] 7,942       --.-K/s   in 0.1s   

2012-08-29 18:44:00 (65.2 KB/s) - `/tmp/dvdcss-cOHKyE/Packages' saved [7942/7942]

--2012-08-29 18:44:00--
Resolving (
Connecting to (||:80... connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 200 OK
Length: 39684 (39K) [application/octet-stream]
Saving to: `/tmp/dvdcss-cOHKyE/libdvdcss.deb'

100%[============================================================================================>] 39,684       220K/s   in 0.2s   

2012-08-29 18:44:00 (220 KB/s) - `/tmp/dvdcss-cOHKyE/libdvdcss.deb' saved [39684/39684]

Selecting previously unselected package libdvdcss2.
(Reading database ... 258577 files and directories currently installed.)
Unpacking libdvdcss2 (from .../dvdcss-cOHKyE/libdvdcss.deb) ...
Setting up libdvdcss2 (1.2.12-0.0medibuntu1) ...
Processing triggers for libc-bin ...
ldconfig deferred processing now taking place

Once done, I re-ran the ripping process, using Thoggen, and ..... the resulting file ( in .OGV format ) looks AND sounds absolutely peachy.

Interestingly, prior to this, I found that ripping this particular DVD ( Star Trek 5 - An Undiscovered Country ) always resulted in a non-English audio track. This was the case BEFORE and AFTER the Ubuntu upgrade.

So I'm not sure whether the combination of 12.04 AND the libdvdcss2 code OR the use of Thoggen has solved the problem.

I'll try Handbrake and see what happens ...

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