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  1. Playing VIDEO_TS folders with .vob files often poses problems. Playing single file files (.mp4, .mk4, etc) usually is no problem, but vob files does.
    Either they don't start, or hang after the menu.
    I guess it is a bit 50/50, playing or not playing.

    This is the case with MPC, VLC and even with Zoomplayer that I have paid over usd 40 for. At some point I stopped playing VIDEO_TS and on other occasions I didn't get sound.
    So I removed the software: waste of money.

    Any workarounds?
    Whilst writing this post, I was thinking of converting such videos to mp4 or mkv, BUT(!)... I do not know:
    - if that will work,
    - if that can be done practically lossless
    - how things are then handled with menus
    - what software to use (other than WinX-HD-Video Converter Deluxe)

    Thanks.

    Note: I tried WinX-HD-Video Converter Deluxe to convert such files to a single video, but the results were poor, that is to say, playback was lagging: playback was not smooth, it was holding for 1-2 seconds and jumps forward. Money was refunded.
    Last edited by vhwul62; 25th Aug 2021 at 03:58. Reason: add comments
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    When I use VLC Player, I right-click on the VIDEO_TS folder then choose "Play with VLC media player". The DVD menu appears and I can play the DVD as I would on the TV with a DVD player. I don't seem to have any issues with this technique.
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  3. Member Skiller's Avatar
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    It's because the individual playback chains and instructions of a given DVD are in the IFO files and therefore merely playing the VOB files containing the video, audio and subtitle streams does not consider this at all.

    The solution with most software players is to open the VIDEO_TS.IFO file which will play the DVD as if it was played in a hardware player.
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  4. As said, it is maybe 50/50, it may/may not work.
    I use:
    r-click folder and select play with ...(in this case MPC-BE)
    or
    launch MPC-BE, open parent folder, with the VIDEO_TS sub folder, - nothing happens
    or -''- but open the VIDEO_TS folder, same effect.

    I also tried "File open" and selected the VIDEO_TS.IFO - nothing happened.

    Whilst waiting for comments here, I converted the video to .mp4 using TMPGEnc Video Mastering v6. Did a rough check and it seems to work well.
    (Did not compress much, resulting file is 3GB)

    I guess that may be a solution then...
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    I just tried that MPC-BE (portable version) and it doesn't behave properly: I can open a VIDEO_TS folder and click on the menu to get the show playing, but I can't scrub/drag through the movie with the timeline marker. The player always reverts to the current play position. VLC Player allows me to drag to any point in the movie and it will start playing there.

    There appears to be something wrong with your setup because, using MPC, I can open the VIDEO_TS.IFO with no problems, after a couple of seconds the DVD menu appears and I can start the movie by clicking on it's menu button.

    If VLC Player (right click on the VIDEO_TS folder) doesn't work, you have system issues, methinks.

    If you don't want to re-encode (which is what you'll be doing if you convert it to an MP4), I'd use DVDVOB2MPG (produces a MPEG 2 file for each movie; no menus though), but there are other options which I'm sure we'll have comments on soon.
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  6. Member Skiller's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Alwyn View Post
    but I can't scrub/drag through the movie with the timeline marker. The player always reverts to the current play position.
    Most likely the DVD does not allow this. You have probably noticed sometimes there are things such as unskippable ads on a DVD. Prohibiting jumps across the timeline is just another PUO (Prohibited User Operation) that the maker of the DVD may set.
    VLC is known to ignore PUOs. So it's actually not doing what the DVD tells it to.
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  7. Besides DVDVOB2MPG already mentioned there is VOB2MPG and MakeMKV that can be used with no re-encoding.
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  8. Thank you all for the comments. Indeed, the video does have an intro (ads). BTW it also happens that the video has a warning (not allowed to copy, blah blah), but will not proceed further: dark screen after that, i.e. main movie does not show up.

    I used VLC quite a while back. Back then it also had some issues with playing VIDEO_TS folders. Often the same issue as with MPC-BE now (not playing), or the video started off being 'choppy' (blocks), which took about 5-10 seconds before the it was 'normal' and a -minor- issue that it always started too large and partially off-screen, i.e. I had to first resize the window panel and drag it to the middle of the screen. That was always the case, it did not remember the window size (and position). MP4, MKV, AVI, makes no difference. Actually I gave up on VLC and am quite happy with MPC-BE, except then this VIDEO_TS thing.

    As for converting without re-encoding, this is an unknown area for me. As I wanted to have the best quality AND a user-friendly interface I gave WinX-HD-Video Converter Deluxe a try.
    It is taking quite a long time to re-encode (tried various ways) but the results were disappointing, regretfully so.
    Could provide support with some "proof'' and they refunded the money, which I appreciated.

    Abovementioned tools, DVDVOB2MPG VOB2MPG and MakeMKV

    I believe MakeMKV is shareware but can't trace the price for it.
    Which one is best AND easiest ? (no complicated expert settings)

    Thanks.
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    Originally Posted by Skiller View Post
    Originally Posted by Alwyn View Post
    but I can't scrub/drag through the movie with the timeline marker. The player always reverts to the current play position.
    Most likely the DVD does not allow this. You have probably noticed sometimes there are things such as unskippable ads on a DVD. Prohibiting jumps across the timeline is just another PUO (Prohibited User Operation) that the maker of the DVD may set.
    VLC is known to ignore PUOs. So it's actually not doing what the DVD tells it to.
    This was on a homemade DVD/VIDEO_TS folder.
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    Originally Posted by vhwul62
    and a -minor- issue that it always started too large and partially off-screen, i.e. I had to first resize the window panel and drag it to the middle of the screen. That was always the case, it did not remember the window size (and position).
    Tools>Preferences>Interface: untick Resize interface to video size.
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  11. Originally Posted by vhwul62 View Post
    Abovementioned tools, DVDVOB2MPG VOB2MPG and MakeMKV

    I believe MakeMKV is shareware but can't trace the price for it.
    Which one is best AND easiest ? (no complicated expert settings)
    MakeMKV is affectionately thought of by many of us as "goofball-ware" because the whole deal with its web servers and license and keys and whatnot is perpetually out-of-whack. It works pretty easily once you get it installed, but finding the correct current key can sometimes be an adventure if the site is having issues. MakeMKV simply takes the MPEG contents of the VOB containers and re-wraps them into an MKV container: no compression, works very fast, but of course very large files (same size as the DVD files). Occasionally I run into problems with players that are confused at finding MPEG video contents in an MKV file: such an MKV configuration is fairly unusual, in fact I've never seen an MKV with MPEG contents that wasn't created by MakeMKV.

    DVDVOB2MPG, VOB2MPG etc are as easy or easier to use as MakeMKV. Here again, no compression, runs very fast, and files are as large as the DVD. The difference from MakeMKV is these tools are even simpler: all they do is remove the MPEG video from the VOB containers, join any that are split, and create a single standard MPEG file. Since pretty much every player finds straight-up MPEG files dead easy to decode and play, you'll never encounter an issue. The hitch with these VOB>MPEG utilities is they may not work with a lot of commercial DVDs unless you also have a decoder installed like DVDfab or AnyDVD (MakeMKV includes a decoder "key", so would be the app to use if you don't own an existing decoder utility).

    The compromise with these tools is you lose all the formatting and convenience options of the VIDEO_TS folder: no chapter menu, no audio track or subtitle track menu, subtitles are omitted from the video so you need to extract them separately. I believe MakeMKV has options to incorporate the specific chapter markers, subtitles and audio track of your choice, because the MKV container supports this. Straight-up MPEG files do not support selectable subs, chapters or audio track switching.

    If you prefer to retain all the normal DVD convenience features of VIDEO_TS folder, I'd strongly recommend having a computer geek evaluate your PC for defects or bugs or missing system bits. Having trouble with one particular media player is common, but having issues with every available player is not normal (at least with Windows 7, if you're on Win 10 all bets are off because MS trashes the system weekly via its enforced crappy updates).

    Once you're sure your Windows is working properly, you might consider trying the Cyberlink PowerDVD player app. This is payware and not cheap, but there is a trial version available. Many new PCs came pre-loaded with PowerDVD: I've got it on several of mine. While it isn't my preferred player, I've found that absolutely nothing stumps it: VIDEO_TS that other players misinterpret or choke on play flawlessly with PowerDVD (it will even play un-finalized discs from many dvd recorders). If you can't get your VIDEO_TS folders to play perfectly under PowerDVD, either theres something seriously wrong with those VIDEO_TS folders (maybe they were ripped poorly), or something is totally funky in your Windows system.
    Last edited by orsetto; 25th Aug 2021 at 19:30.
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  12. And to supplement oresetto: All 3 will give you the same quality as the origiinal DVD, ie the best possible.
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  13. Member Skiller's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Alwyn View Post
    This was on a homemade DVD/VIDEO_TS folder.
    The only way to find out if it is a PUO causing this behavior is to check the VIDEO_TS folder with something like PgcEdit. PUOs can be set for any DVD; homemade or commerical, intentionally or unintentionally.
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  14. Many thanks to you all for the comments, especially to orsetto for the detailed explanation. It is truly appreciated! As said, this is an 'uncharted' area for me. So far I always believed that any change (read: conversion) led to loss of quality, due to this re-encoding. Please.. correct me if I am wrong: as these tools can convert to another format without compression, does this mean (more or less) lossless? Re-encoding is only needed in case of a smaller file size?

    Just gave MakeMKV a try.

    Would go something like this..


    Image
    [Attachment 60447 - Click to enlarge]


    Output file: title_t00.mkv (4,52GB)

    It plays well as far as I can see.

    As for MakeMKV registration, indeed, I see quite a number of posts on this topic on the MakeMKV-forum.
    Also it seems to be freeware or maybe it is shareware(?)
    And also I vainly searched for the differences between the freeware/shareware version
    and the price. All a little bit misty...
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  15. Correct: the tools suggested (MakeMKV and the VOB>MPEG converters) do not compress, re-encode or alter the original video quality in any way, they just re-wrap the peculiar segmented dvd vob structure into a single standard MKV or MPEG2 video file (movie) or several files (if multiple separate recordings are on the disc, such as TV episodes).

    MakeMKV has been around for years, but its marketing can be confusing to newcomers. In theory it is being developed as a commercial product, but until then is offered as freeware/shareware for mass "beta testing" by any interested users. It can be used freely, but the website/developer occasionally "hiccups" and the monthly code key necessary for full function becomes unavailable for a short time. Everybody panics, then a couple weeks later a new "free" key appears and everything returns to normal. The shareware/payware aspect is unclear: current policy seems to be use with DVDs is free if you keep downloading a new free key, but use with Bluray requires a paid key. I've never used it for BluRay so haven't looked into that.

    Note in some rare cases, any of these utilities might create a video file with terrible picture quality. I've never been able to pin down exactly why, but a tiny subset of random dvds are resistant to ripping properly with any available tool at any price. Any attempt to extract the video from these dvds results in video files with exaggerated combing/interlace issues. There is no consistent pattern to what triggers this: I've seen it happen with dvds from multiple sources. They can be directly cloned/copied to another disc in the same dvd format with no issues, but extraction to MPEG2 or MKV results in nasty interlacing errors.
    Last edited by orsetto; 26th Aug 2021 at 12:54.
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  16. Thank you again!
    VOB2MPG is old, development stopped, so I did not check it out. I did check out DVDVOB2MPG. The playback hangs at the very first screen. It starts with the 'Attention'-screen - French screen, prohibited to distribute, etc. Nothing happens.
    MakeMKV seems to skip this screen, it starts with the movie. Probably because of this decoder thing that you wrote about in your earlier post (25th Aug 2021 17:42).

    Your first para was/is important for me (no compression, no loss, etc).

    FWIW - DVDVOB2MPG converted the DVD to mpg in 2:40 sec, MakeMKV converted the same movie in 2:11 sec, both are (very) fast when comparing to re-encoding software of course.
    Right now, I think MakeMKV is the best.

    BTW: as it reported some kind of 'error' with DVDFab or something, I checked out DVDFab as well and installed the converter. Converting would take a long time and only a few titles. I gave up on that.

    It seems the batchmkv hasn't been updated for a while - the last forum posts on that are about errors. Maybe one day, MakeMKV will have a native batchprocessor.

    Oh, as for file naming, I see that MakeMKV an 'Advanced'-tab is added once 'Expert' is checked in the settings.

    By default I see that the Output file name template box shows: {NAME1}{-:CMNT1}..etc.
    ref: https://forum.makemkv.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=18313

    The {Name1} {Name2} etc. it doesn't say much too me.

    If a DVD is like this

    SomeDVDTitle
    ---------- VIDEO_TS

    and I would like to have the output named after 'SomeDVDTitle' - so the DVD Disc title.

    what should I use then?
    {Name1} {Name2} ...
    I tried with 0, 1, 2 but each time the output would be title.mkv

    Then again, maybe there is no such thing as to name after disc title?
    I don't need to look further.
    Last edited by vhwul62; 27th Aug 2021 at 02:49.
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  17. Don't assume "old" is "bad" . A number of old, abandoned, no-longer-developed apps are still mainstay apps that many of us prefer over new alternatives. VOB2MPG is a good example: works just about flawlessly and dead simple to use. Only problem is it has issues running under Windows 10. This is annoyingly true of many excellent apps: Windows 10 killed them, for no good reason other than Windows 10 sucks at everything except web browsing (and spying on you). Some of us who've been doing video work for a long time either don't bother with Win 10 at all, or keep a couple of older cheap Win 7 laptops or PCs around just to use our preferred video apps. I understand that isn't practical for everyone, and Win 10 is the current standard, but it does shut out some good apps and force you into crummier Win 10-compatibles like DVDVOB2MPG (hate the name with a passion, hate how it works even more, but the lovely VOB2MPG just won't function in Win 10).

    what should I use then?
    {Name1} {Name2} ...
    I tried with 0, 1, 2 but each time the output would be title.mkv
    This is one of those functions that works for some people, while others never figure it out. I've never gotten it to work the way I want with any similar utility: no matter what I program, the file titles are always a generic mess and I need to rename each one afterward. If you're looking for something to batch extract many dvds containing multiple episodes, automatically giving each file a perfect name, I don't think you're going to find it. The best I've been able to manage is having the initial file names be something I can understand and rename after (i.e. RED_DWARF_S01E01, RED_DWARF_S01E02, etc). Often I don't even do that and just let the program do its messy generic title naming, fixing each file as it appears.
    Last edited by orsetto; 28th Aug 2021 at 09:41.
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  18. Thanks! Bad luck...

    Then renaming files afterwards is the only way to go then.
    When Preferences > Video is set to Auto it will create a sub folder named after the disc within C:\VIDEO
    Nonetheless it may need some manual work afterwards.

    e.g. a series of 3 DVD's each containing a number of episodes, in the end you'll have
    C:\Video\disc name
    title.mkv
    title_t01.mkv
    title_t02.mkv
    same for the 2nd disc and 3rd disc
    so one usually ends up with renaming the titles in 2nd and 3rd disc and add those to the first one and then do the renaming.

    Ah well, so be it.

    Oh, BTW, another drawback of playing VIDEO_TS (.vob) files by media players that I forgot to mention: often, when playing and jumping back to, for instance, the previous scene, players may halt and crash.
    Going back and forth = problems.
    I usually end up killing the task within taskmanager.
    With single files this usually doesn't happen.
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  19. I just wonder why playing vob files from HDD often poses problems
    To answer the original question: You have to have a DVD license to have access to the DVD specification. That license is not cheap. If you have a license you are bound by the terms of that license. That includes things like not decrypting the DVD contents without a secure data path from the DVD player to the TV (so that it cannot be copied), not playing DVDs that are not the same region as the DVD drive, and not disclosing the DVD specification to others. So all the non-licensed rippers and players don't have access to the DVD spec. What those programmers have learned is from reverse engineering. Hence those rippers and players are not perfect.

    Since DVD encryption was cracked by DVD Jon in 1999 it has been easy to decrypt commercial DVDs. Since encryption is no longer an effective copy protection mechanism the DVD content providers are always looking for other ways to prevent copying. They use tricks and obfuscations in the DVD structure and navigation -- things that licensed DVD players can deal with, but are hard for those without access to the spec to figure out. So there's always a lag between when a DVD with new obfuscations is released and when the rippers/players are updated to deal with it.
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  20. Originally Posted by vhwul62 View Post
    e.g. a series of 3 DVD's each containing a number of episodes, in the end you'll have
    C:\Video\disc name
    title.mkv
    title_t01.mkv
    title_t02.mkv
    same for the 2nd disc and 3rd disc
    so one usually ends up with renaming the titles in 2nd and 3rd disc and add those to the first one and then do the renaming.
    You haven't really cursed in your life until the day you get distracted and forget to rename such ripped files as each disc is finished, before ripping the next disc in a set. I rip a lot of TV series sets with CloneDVDMobile to make files for ancient iPods: that app is identical to MakeMKV in its file naming scheme. When I slip up and forget to stop after each disc and rename, I end up with three sets of "title_t01.mkv, title_t02.mkv" etc. When I finally notice, a string of very creative expletives is the result: so tedious to sort out that mess into the correct running order for 13 or 22 eps.
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  21. Member hech54's Avatar
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    I believe Expert Mode allows you to name titles before you Make an MKV.
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  22. One could probably change the name in the mainscreen?
    I gave it a try: the output file is then named after the name I added in main screen.
    But .... what has been set in the advanced panel, like
    Code:
    {NAME1}{-:CMNT1}{-:DT}{title:+DFLT}{_t:N2}
    ,
    seems to be totally ignored then(?) Maybe, if one is adding a name in the main screen, it will rule over whatever has been set in 'Advance' tab?
    I don't know for sure, it looks that way.

    orsetto - I have not been able to figure out a way that 'title' actually starts with T01. What have you set in the 'Advanced' tab?

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    Image
    [Attachment 60486 - Click to enlarge]

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    Image
    [Attachment 60488 - Click to enlarge]

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    Last edited by vhwul62; 29th Aug 2021 at 09:27.
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