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(Partially inspired by this question.)

Background: I have a PC hidden away behind an HD LCD in custom-built entertainment center. The only visible part of the PC is an external DVD drive, mounted above the Wii. The PC happens to have Windows XP on it; Hackintoshing and Linux might be possible, but I've had issues with drivers for the sound card before. Let's just assume that OS X and Linux are a no-go unless they provide a truly awesome and simple solution for this particular problem.

Goal: I would like to have a completely automated workflow for ripping DVDs. Something like this:

  1. Push the eject button on the DVD drive, insert the DVD.
  2. PC recognizes that this is a video DVD (as opposed to data).
  3. PC rips DVD to hard drive.
  4. PC finishes ripping, and ejects the DVD tray.
  5. PC compresses DVD image into some format that an Xbox 360 can read.
  6. PC copies finished compressed video file to a particular folder, so that it can be read into a WMP11 library and seamlessly played by the Xbox 360.
  7. PC cleans up all temporary files.
  8. Done.

The impetus to have this be completely automated is that I’ll never need to switch the TV to the PC’s input and fiddle with the wireless keyboard. That’s just needless user intervention.

The UI doesn’t have to be pretty. Nor do I care about speed. And I can probably bridge several of the gaps with some creative Perl use. But it seems likely that many (or all) of the parts should already exist.

Any thoughts?

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

DVD Rip Automates One-Click DVD Ripping seems like what you're after. It's an open-source AutoHotkey script, so if it doesn't do what you need, you can modify it

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I have just answered a similar question on my website.

I have taken the concept of Adam Pash's DVD Rip a few steps further. I wanted to be able to get the movie's title and associated metadata and cover art, and rip the file using the right title. This means the ripping is completely automatic and a few short hours after a disc is inserted the movie will appear in Media Center complete with cover art and metadata.

To achieve this I've cobbled together several tools and a few scripts to glue them together.

The overall process is as follows:

  • Use Yammm to automatically retrieve the ID from themovidb for any DVD loaded into a drive.
  • Use EventGhost to watch the directory that Yammm populates with metadata and launch an AutoHotkey script.
  • Within the Autohotkey script, invoke DVD Shrink to rip the DVD contents to the hard drive.
  • Once the DVD has been ripped, invoke Handbrake to create an MKV file.

There are a few issues with this setup that I'd like to refine.

  • The EventGhost-Yammm integration is a bit flakey. It would be neater if Yammm could be invoked directly or invoke the script when metadata is found.
  • If there is no entry in for the film, then the ripping process won't launch.
  • Once Handbrake completes a command prompt is left lying around. It could be closed, but I'm wary of clashing with user interactions.
  • The VIDEO_TS and AUDIO_TS folders are left lying around. Once the MKV is created they aren't really needed and could be deleted.

As far as your question's requirements are concerned there are a few additional tweaks to be made.

  • The Xbox doesn't like MKVs, you can tweak the parameters in the EventGhost script to tell Handbrake to rip using the "Normal" preset which will output an MP4 file. The Xbox 360 reads those just fine.
  • The disc isn't ejected after processing completes, this could be added fairly easily using AutoHotkey's Drive, Eject command

You can download the scripts and see the full instructions at

My next step is to build a robot to load DVDs from a spindle so I can rip more than a couple a day.

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Wow. Very nice. – Kevin L. Mar 6 '10 at 1:19
Shame the website is now offline, so this wonderful explanation comes to nought. – Lucanos Aug 12 '15 at 4:03

Handbrake is a great app for automating the ripping of DVDs. It can script & handle batch jobs, and handle single-file movies and single files just fine.

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Handbrake will not remove the copy protection – kpoehls Jul 25 '09 at 1:04
I have read that "HandBrake will dynamically load VLC's copy of libdvdcss if you have it in your Applications folder in Mac OS X, and if you're on Linux, and you want to live on the wild side, you can install libdvdcss on your system and get the same effect." – Eduardo Molteni Aug 3 '09 at 10:55
Handbrake has a Command line interface version available - how about trying to script that, and edit your question with the solution for everyone else! :) – MGOwen Sep 1 '09 at 10:17
Handbrake can encode from a HD quite easily. I do it all the time. – Dan Esparza Mar 20 '12 at 18:45
In 2009, I had issues with Handbrake getting it to re-encode a video file off a hard drive (since it was originally designed to rip DVDs). In 2012, its super easy. I'll edit the answer. – Andrew Scagnelli Mar 22 '12 at 17:48

I just completed a piece of software that does exactly this. I was quite surprised to find that no one had accomplished this. You do need AnyDVD and HandBrake, but other than that it does everything you asked for. While there is a free version, to raise the default HandBrake quality settings, you need to shell out $10. Check it out at

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be careful being a 1 rep user and you are posting your own products. I think this is a good solution though, I would include in your answer though that to get high quality rips you must pay $10 – Earlz May 8 '10 at 21:06
@Earlz, thank you. I wasn't even aware of the rep points. I've edited my answer with your suggestion. – Joey Gennari May 19 '10 at 21:54

Handbrake is an excellent all-in-one ripper/encoder. It can also remove copy protection if you download the libdvdcss-2.dll and put it in the root folder of location you installed Handbrake. ie.. C:\Program Files\Handbrake\libdvdcss-2.dll

I won't post where you can download this but just do a Google search for "Videolan libdvdcss-2.dll". Once you copy and paste it in the folder of your installation, just start Handbrake and watch it work.

I've been using this method for a few months now and there have been no hiccups.

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