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Frustrated trying to copy a DVD! Help?
Old 12-06-2004, 06:16 AM   #1
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Frustrated trying to copy a DVD! Help?

Has anyone here had good experiences making backup copies of movie DVDs? Would appreciate it if you could share some tips. This was my experience over the weekend (and before anyone jumps all over me, I own these DVDs so I should be allowed to make a backup copy under fair use).

This system is a relatively new Dell Inspiron with the included DVD+R drive. I am tempted to go a buy an external USB 2.0 DVD+R drive at the store - do you think that would get any better results? Can anyone recommend a software package that works well?

1) Try to copy using "Disc Copier" feature of Roxio DVD/CD Creator 5. Says the DVD is copyrighted and won't copy it.

2) Download DVDXCopy Platnium. Spends about 30 mins copying the DVD to the hard drive, 30 minutes writing the disc, and an abnormally long time "finalizing" the disc. But then it reports that it created it successfully. When I try to open the newly written DVD in either of my computers' DVD drives, it can't be read as I get "invalid function" or just no listing of contents at all.

3) Download CloneDVD2. Says that the disc is encrypted and can't be copied. Then I read that I can get around that with a program called AnyDVD, which works. CloneDVD2 spends about the same amount of time copying/burning the disc as DVDXCopy, but this time the result actually plays in my computer. However, there are a lot of problems with skipping and the video breaks-up quite often, essentially unwatchable.

4) Try another run with CloneDVD2 at the lowest burn speed (1x, previously was at 4x). Same exact results as before - disc is viewable, but has problems.

5) Realize that AnyDVD might let me use Roxio from step 1. Correct, Roxio allows me to copy the disc now. Success! The copy is identical to the original with no skipping problems. So then I grab another DVD, only to find that it can't be copied because it's too big. Apparently the first DVD had less than 4.7GB of data on it, but the second DVD has about 7GB of data on it so it won't fit on a standard DVD+R. Supposedly CloneDVD2 can compress the data to fit, but that doesn't help me if there are skipping problems.

Nothing works and now I have several wasted DVD+R discs. I give up!

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Re: Frustrated trying to copy a DVD! Help?
Old 12-06-2004, 09:09 AM   #2
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Re: Frustrated trying to copy a DVD! Help?

I don't know a lot about this, except for listening to my husband's woes. He has gotten much farther in the process on his MAC than on his PC. His problem is also the size of the media he is recording onto. The MAC program he uses allows him to cut the video in 2 and copy onto 2 separate discs. In the end, it's not worth his trouble.

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Re: Frustrated trying to copy a DVD! Help?
Old 12-06-2004, 09:33 AM   #3
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Re: Frustrated trying to copy a DVD! Help?

You are a week or so ahead of me and seem to have done the things I was going to. I may try next weekend unless I spend it outside. I will be watching this with interest and will advise if I learn anything.

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Re: Frustrated trying to copy a DVD! Help?
Old 12-06-2004, 10:18 AM   #4
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Re: Frustrated trying to copy a DVD! Help?

DVD Shrink should be all you need after your DVD burner and burning software. You don't need 2 DVD drives if you have enough space on your hard drive to hold the temporary copy.

Storebought DVDs can be up to 9GB large. Up until recently all burnable DVDs were limited to 4.7GB. The new "dual layer" ones will do 9GB with the dual layer media but are more expensive.

DVD Shrink will shrink the movie (if necessary) to fit on your 4.7GB disc. It takes about an hour or so for me to back up a DVD with DVD Shrink. There must be detail loss, but I haven't noticed it yet.

Since burned DVDs can't have CSS encryption, the copies will not be encrypted and should be copiable using your regular DVD copier software.

DVD Shrink can also make the copied CD so you can skip the previews/ads/fancy menus if you want to.

DVD Shrink is free. Woohoo!

If you want to learn more check out , but there are many topics and many tools discussed and they get pretty detailed.

It's nice to take the copies on a trip with the portable player; I don't have to worry about breaking the originals on the plane.
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Re: Frustrated trying to copy a DVD! Help?
Old 12-06-2004, 10:29 AM   #5
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Re: Frustrated trying to copy a DVD! Help?

Two points to consider here - one technical and one legal.

The technical point is that a number of movies are now coming out on multi-layer format and not all the burners will write multi-layer discs nor will all of the media (the discs themselves) support it. *This is why you need to burn to two discs - there are actually two single-layer discs worth of data on that DVD.

The legal one is that even though copyright law does allow you make backups or copies for personal use if you own a copy of the original the "Digital Millenium Copyright Act" forbids you from breaking any encryption or defeating any anti-copying techniques when you make that backup. *It effectively makes it a crime to exercise your rights under copyright law. *Yet another example of the corporate will over-riding the rights of the populous. *So, beware of who you tell this to - it's an illegal activity.
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