CDEx

Great CD ripper. Also gets the CDDB info, although you have to enter your email first in the options. (I don’t know why.) And open-source, too.

CDEx

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Need to get clips from a DVD? Try AIV DVD Cutter

Okay, so I had this DVD, and the chapters were a bit messed up. So I didn’t feel like ripping a whole buncha chapters for one little clip. So I checked out a few freeware sites and found AIV DVD Cutter, which works beautifully — it saves the clips into VOB, so I use avi.NET to make an AVI out of it.

Another DVD Ripper

Hasn’t been updated in a while, but DVD Decrypter works great for when SmartRipper doesn’t cooperate.

Files locked in SmartRipper? No worries!

Sometimes, on SmartRipper, you may get an error saying the files are locked. Don’t worry — just play the DVD for a few minutes in any software DVD player (I use VLC Media Player), and try again. It should work.

Good luck!

SmartRipper and ASPI Adapters

My friend recently asked me how to fix the “No ASPI Adapter Available” error in SmartRipper, a no-longer-updated DVD ripper (I mentioned it in an earlier blog post). I got the same error too — it is because ASPI is not installed in Windows XP.

Fortunatly, it can be easily fixed with ForceASPI. All you do is download it, run it, then reboot. And there’s your ASPI adapters.

Good luck!

Creating AVI files from DVD’s.

Okay, so you have some DVDs, and would like to convert them to AVI’s, perhaps to create animations or use parts of it in fan-made videos. But you find that other DVD rippers don’t create AVIs, cost money, or are very low quality. Anyways, I discovered a method that may just work for you. However, it may be illegal in your country, so check the copyright laws first! (Although, from what I read, you probably wouldn’t get in trouble unless you were uploading it – but I’m no lawyer.)

SmartRipper, while no longer updated, is able to rip the VOB (DVD video files) right from the disk. A very helpful tutorial is available here. It can also get past older copy protection, which is illegal in several areas.

But you need an AVI.

So, get a VOB-to-AVI converter! My converter of choice is avi.NET, although it doesn’t work on everyone’s computers, so you may need to find your own.

Good luck! (And if you find any useful programs, post them in the comments!)

Sept 21, 2008 update: Note that your DVD needs to be perfectly clean, or SmartRipper can freeze up — if it does, just kill the process, clean the CD, and try again. Always clean from the center outwards, to prevent damage.