Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Ripping DVD's using ubuntu 9.04 64 bit

I have to spend quite a lot of time travelling on the train so I use my laptop (ubuntu 9.04 64 bit) to watch my purchased DVD's.
So instead of lugging DVD's around, I wondered if I could rip my DVD's to hard drive and watch them without having to have the DVD player spinning.
A quick google shows that "handbrake" is a popular DVD ripper for this type of process. Question is whether it would ever work on ubuntu 9.04 64.
The answer is "Yes -very easily". This is what I did to get it working
Simply download the 64 bit version of handbrake from:

It downloads as a "deb" file so just double click it to install. It will appear under "Applications > Sound and Vision"

If you start the app, then choose a ripping format on the right pane, open the DVD using the button at the top and then start.

I used "Basic>Normal" encoding and checked the box "Support iPod 5G". For this type of file it is a two pass encoding and the file created is an mp4 placed in my "home/Videos" folder. It takes a while (about three times as fast as watching it). Double clicking on the created file launches the standard ubuntu "Movie Player" - but on my system, it does not have the necessary decoders. Amazingly, it knows where to find these (assuming it is connected to the internet). It complained about not having
MPEG-4 AAC decoder
H.264 decoder
Then proceeded to go find them in the following packages:
I let them install and hey presto, I can watch the ripped movie on my laptop.

Of course this should only be done with DVD's you actually own but it is great for those boxed sets where you get seven seasons as a set of 50 or so DVDS. A 40 min episode rips to a file about 300GB

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