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Here is my scenerio:

I have several hundred dvds that i want to back up digitally. I have unlimited harddisk space (almost 7000 gb). I want to copy entire dvds (or possibly just the main movie from the dvd, depending on what makes more sense) WITHOUT compression or losing quality. (Quality is of most importance.) I am new to this, but I need top quality, albeit it might take days and thousands of gigs of memory. When I've done this with trial programs, none of my media playing programs have been able to read the file that has been created (They can only read the individual iso's that were created), so the dvd menus and subtitle controls and such are lost. I also need the ability to burn a 1 to 1 copy of that dvd at any time from the harddrive without having the dvd disk itself. I am willing to pay for a program if that is necessary to make this work smoothly and keep it organized.

Here's the catch: I need to be able to potentially convert these files into something an ipod can play (mpeg4). I am assuming that would be possible in the same program that can just convert the iso file into an mpeg4, but that MUST be possible.

If anyone could give me suggestions, point out flaws in my plan, or give links to potential programs that would be needed to do this, it would be very much appreciated. Thanks in advance.

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Yeah .. this should go on SuperUser. –  Tyler Carter Jul 25 '09 at 23:09
    
If only it existed... –  Brian Jul 25 '09 at 23:17
    
It's there if you look... –  therefromhere Jul 25 '09 at 23:24
    
lol win. went beta in the last week then eh? –  Brian Jul 25 '09 at 23:26
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7 terabytes! I'm so jealous. ;-) –  user3291 Jul 26 '09 at 2:56
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migrated from stackoverflow.com Jul 26 '09 at 2:16

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5 Answers

you can use SlySoft products to rip dvds.
AnyDVD will bypass the copyright, and you can easily use it to copy the entire content to your HD as is (As far as I know).
CloneDVD can make copies of your dvds, and CloneDVD Mobile can convert them to many other formats.
They also have good trial versions for you to check out before you buy. and BluRay version as well.

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Great products, and the three mentioned here will take care of all of the OP's needs. –  raven Jul 27 '09 at 13:21
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(Yes, this should be moved to SuperUser)

If space is not a concern, you could just make direct ISOs of the discs with InfraRecorder.

Once you have the ISOs, VLC can play ISOs directly, and with some finagling that Google could help out with you can convert those into any format at a later time, such as for your iPod, again, using VLC.

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Does infrarecord bypass copyrights? –  Alex Jul 25 '09 at 23:26
    
And can these iso's be burned to a DVD in full quality with menus? –  Alex Jul 25 '09 at 23:29
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I personally used Fair Use Wizard on my DVDs so I can play them straight from the network without hunting for discs.

I ripped them all to 2100MB avi files in XViD including the full AC3 surround track and at the full DVD resolution, and any quality degradation is imperceptible to me. If you are more sensitive you may need to set it a bit higher, or you can ask FU Wizard to rip it to an avi that contains the original data stream from the disc, which should be a very quick rip, but might take about 4-6GB per movie instead.

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DVD Shrink will allow you to rip just the main movie from your DVDs. It will also allow you to "splice" two part movies together via reauthoring (think disc 1 and 2 of Lord of the Rings extended edition).

Another guide, with links to alternative programs.

Due to legal restrictions, you'll have to go Google for a download.

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If you really need the original dvd with menu and everything, then I think a simple ISO creation tool will do the job (MagicISO, or any CD/DVD writer soft can do that).
Personally I don't like to have the menu's and everything else on the dvd. Only the movie, and I also compress it with a good codec (You can go to half the size of a dvd without losing any quality like @jerryjvl mentioned in his answer!).
I'd recommend Handbrake for this. It's free, open source and cross platform. And very easy to use. It also supports converting to an iPod-friendly format.
Another freeware tool I've been using successfully for this is DVDx. Also good but somewhat less user-friendly.

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