Video streaming subscription has surpassed physical media as a more popular choice for home entertainment. And even Apple itself has made a conscious move away from physical discs with the removal of DVD drives from its computers. And that's why more and more people are fond of turning their physical DVDs into digital files to watch on Mac, iPhone, stream to set-top boxes, store on hard drive, etc. However, commercial DVDs are always copy protected, which prevents DVD owners who want to copy DVD movies to Mac directly.
Actually, it's not an easy task to copy and rip protected DVDs on Mac. Some Mac DVD rippers can remove several copy protection schemes, while some can't. Fortunately, there are always solution out there. In this article, we'll show you the best software to rip copyright protected DVDs on Mac and how to copy protected DVDs on Mac with Handbrake and VLC.
How to tell if a DVD is copy protected?
You can check your DVD box or the disc, and see if there's a copy protected icon on it. Another way to tell whether a DVD is encrypted is to make use of a third-party tool. Some DVD ripping programs will show whether the disc has encryption or not and which copy protection it has. For example, EaseFab DVD Ripper will pop up a prompt when a disney encrypted DVD is imported. Actually, nearly all commercial DVDs are copy protected.
Part 1. Best Software to Rip & Copy Protected DVDs on Mac
To rip protected DVDs, firstly you need to find a right tool that can remove copy protection from DVD on Mac. There are some free DVD ripping tools that are welcomed by users like Handbrake, MakeMKV, DVD Decrypter, FFmpeg, etc. But they are not good at ripping copyright protected DVDs on Mac.
For example, Handbrake cannot rip protected DVDs by itself. To make HandBrake read encrypted DVDs successfully, there is an additional tool you need to install, namely libdvdcss. However, even if libdvdcss is installed, you may also come across copy-protected DVD reading and ripping errors. DVD Decrypter, one of the best free DVD copy protection removal software, fails to handle with new DVDs with an I/O device eror. MakeMKV crashes now and then.
The best program to decrypt and rip protected DVDs on Mac is EaseFab DVD Ripper for Mac.
EaseFab DVD Ripper for Mac is an easy-to-use yet powerful program which can digitize and rip both homemade and commercial DVDs regardless of DVD copyright protections and regional settings. It can cope with almost all DVD encryptions, covering CSS, region code, RCE, Sony ArccOS, UOPs, Disney X-project (99-title DVD copy protection), and other special encryption schemes. Old and latest DVD movies from Paramount, 21st Century Fox, and other studios, and non-standard DVDs are well supported.
This Mac DVD ripping software can easily and fast rip protected DVDs to MP4, MKV, AVI, WMV, MOV, FLV, HEVC, H.264 and other mainstream video and audio formats. And more than 150 device profiles including iPhone, iPad, Android, etc. are pre-configured, which is great if you're unsure of what format you need. Moreover, you can select the desired subtitle and audio tracks, add external subtitles, crop, trim and edit the ripped DVD videos. What's more, it allows you to copy a full DVD to Video_TS folder or a single MPEG file with the full title or main title within 5 minutes.
If you're using a PC, please download EaseFab DVD Ripper Windows version to rip your protected DVDs on Windows (Windows 11/10 included).
[Tutorial] How to rip copy-protected DVDs on Mac with 3 simple steps
Step 1. Import the copy-protected DVD into disc drive and EaseFab.
Insert DVD disc into optical drive or your Mac or an external DVD drive. Then, open EaseFab DVD Ripper for Mac and tap Load DVD button navigation bar to select and open the DVD you just inserted. Then it will fast scan your DVD, bypass DVD copy protection, and detect the correct main movie title for you.
Tips: You can also input ISO image and DVD folder and convert them to a mainstreaming format.
Step 2. Select output format.
On the output profile window, you should select an output format based on your own needs. You can choose one from general profiles (like MP4, AVI, WMV), device (Apple, Android, Microsoft, Sony etc.), web videos (FLV, WebM and more), music (MP3, AAC, AC3), TS video or copy DVD as VIDEO_TS folder or a single MPEG2 file with full/main title. You can also choose preferred subtitle or audio track from the Subtitle or Audio drop-down lists.
Step 3. Rip DVD with Removal of Copy Protection on Mac
Tap the small Folder icon in the Output bar to set destination folder (hard drive or device) and click Convert button to rip the copy-protected DVD on Mac.
Disclaimer: EaseFab Software does not advocate ripping copy-protected DVDs for any commercial purpose and suggests referring to the DVD copyright laws in your countries before doing so.
Part 2. How to Free Rip Protected DVDs on Mac with Handbrake
Before getting into the detailed steps of removing copy protection from DVD with HandBrake, it's important to know that this free DVD copy protection removal software is for ripping unprotected DVDs even though it can bypass the UOP protection. If you still want to rely on HandBrake to unlock CSS or Region Code copy protection from movie DVDs, you have to take advantage of the libdvdcss library.
How to Install libdvdcss on Mac and use Handbrake to rip protected DVDs
Step 1. Install HandBrake.
Go to the official site of HandBrake to download and install the latest version of HandBrake on your Mac.
Step 2. Download Libdvdcss on Mac.
Start Terminal and enter the command line: /usr/bin/ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Homebrew/install/master/install)"
Press Return and enter your password. It now starts to install Homebrew.
Once Homebrew is successfully installed on the Mac, start Terminal again.
Enter the command line: brew install libdvdcss. Press Enter.
Homebrew now starts to download and install the libdvdcss library on your Mac.
OS X El Capitan and later come with a new security system named SIP (System Integrity Protection). It will remove the libdvdcss library and a few other apps that are used for removing protection from DVDs. Hence, you might fail to install the libdvdcss library on your Mac by following the above steps. No worry, however, we've already found the solution.
Download and install libdvdcss.pkg on the Mac.
Enter sudo mkdir /usr/local/lib/ sudo cp ~/Downloads/libdvdcss_1.4.0/libdvdcss.2.dylib /usr/local/lib/libdvdcss.2.dylib and press Enter. That's it.
Step 3. Import the Encrypted DVD.
Launch up HandBrake on your Mac. The tool will display all the files and discs it detected. Choose the DVD you want to remove the copy protection from, and this will lead you to a new panel.
Step 4. Choose the Output File.
Beginners can choose the wanted output format from the giving options of Preset. Advanced user? Just navigate down to find the Video and Audio tabs. Here, you have dozens of options used for customizing the video bitrate, resolutions, frame rate, and sample rate, etc.
Step 5. Rip protected DVDs on Mac with HandBrake.
Once you're satisfied with all the adjustments, choose Browse to set up an output file folder. Press Start Encode on the top menu bar. HandBrake will then start to rip the DVD and remove the applied copy protection.
Part 3. How to Rip Protected DVDs free on Mac with VLC
VLC is not only a DVD player, but also a DVD ripper. Since libdvdcss is inside VLC, you can use VLC to remove CSS copy protection mechanism from DVD. Now, let me show you how to rip copy protected DVD with VLC.
Insert the DVD into your Mac drive before proceeding with the below steps.
Step 1: Open VLC Media Player app on your Mac system. From the drop-down menu at the File tab, choose the Open Disc option.
Step 2: A window with your disc information will open. Click the box for Disable DVD menus. At the bottom left corner, check the box for Stream output.
Step 3: Hit the Settings button that will allow you to a new window. Here check the File option to get the ripped disc as a file on your Mac. Hit Browse to select the location where you want to save the converted disc. A pop-up window, choose file name and location at Save As and Where tabs, respectively. Click the Save button to confirm.
Step 4: Next, Open the drop-down menu at the Encapsulation Method and choose an output format. Make the needed video and audio settings. Click OK to confirm all the settings.
Step 5: Finally, click Open to start to rip protected DVD on Mac.
Part 4. List of Most Common DVD Copy Protection Schemes
CSS, short for Content Scramble System, utilizes a proprietary 40-bit stream cipher algorithm to restrict DVD-Video access. This digital rights management (DRM) and encryption system is employed on many commercially produced DVD-Video discs.
Region Code, is for preventing the playback of a commercial disc in a region other than the one it is released. Suppose you have a DVD that is released in Canada (region 1), then you could not play it on a region 2 DVD player. With region codec protection, movie studios can effectively control the release date and price of new movies according to region.
RCE, the abbreviation for Region Codec Enhanced, is for preventing the playback of a movie DVD in a region other than the one it is released, even if the DVD is played in a region free player.
UOP is short for User operation prohibition. Just as its name implies, UOP is for preventing people from performing any actions during the playback of a UOP protected section. It is initially come out to stop viewers from skipping the copyright notice, but now UOP is more widely running for stopping views skipping the ads of a DVD.
Sony ARccOS Protection, a copy protection system created by Sony, is designed as an additional layer used with the CSS scheme. When people are trying to copy the DVD by using a DVD copy tool, ARccOS will deliberately generate corrupted sectors on the DVD.
APS is the abbreviation of Analog Protection System. It is a VHS and DVD copy protection system developed by TiVo Corporation (formerly the Macrivsion). It works by adding pulses to apply negatively impact on the AGC circuit of the recording device. By doing so, it can damage the digital copies of APS encrypted DVDs.
HDCP refers to High-Bandwidth Digital Content Protection. It's a digital copy protection scheme proposed and carried out by Intel. When users copy a DVD without permission, the HDCP technique will interrupt the process and downgrade the result picture quality to achieve the purpose of protecting the DVD content.
Disney X Project (99-title) is a new copy protection scheme developed by Disney. The features of this sort of encrypted movie DVDs are 99 titles and over 40GB of file size. Currently, no freeware can remove a Disney 99 title copy protection scheme.
In this article, we've explained how to rip protected DVD on Mac with EaseFab DVD Ripper for Mac, HandBrake, and VLC. Both HandBrake and VLC rely on libdvdcss to decrypt DVDs protected by CSS, while EaseFab DVD Ripper for Mac can bypass CSS, region code, RCE, UOPs, Sony ARccOS, and more copy protection schemes on its own. To sum up, EaseFab DVD Ripper for Mac is the best software to digitize and rip copyright protected DVDs on Mac.