Aurélien Gâteau

Cars 2 DVD and Linux... an embarrassing story

written on Sunday, August 5, 2012

Latest addition to my kids DVD library is the Cars 2 DVD. They usually watch movies using a small PC running XBMC, so I started to rip it. I use either K9Copy or Ogmrip to rip DVDs, both get the job done without problem these days.

Not so lucky

Unfortunately Cars 2 DVD is different: Even if it can play it, VLC lists 99 titles on the DVD, which sounds a bit too much. K9Copy crashes on it. Ogmrip gets stuck when it tries to rip any track.

As I discovered later, Disney DVDs use a new protection system named ArccOS. Searching on the Internet I realized I was not the only one having this problem, but appart from similarly unlucky users, I only found Windows shareware applications claiming to be able to rip those Disney DVDs.


At this point I was desperate enough that I started a Windows XP VM and tried a few of these applications. Two of them failed, but the third one correctly ripped Cars 2... With a large watermark, it's a shareware after all, there is got to be a catch. As I couldn't find any other solution, I reluctantly paid 40€ for the full version :(.

Note that I am not extremist to the point of refusing to pay for software, but I have a problem with paying 4 times the price of a legally bought DVD to be able to exercise my right to make a copy of it.

Hope after all

Shortly after paying, I switched to another tab of my browser and noticed a search I made actually uncovered an interesting forum thread. This is where I learnt about ArccOS, but also where I discovered HandBrake, a free software, multi-platform, video transcoder application I have never heard about... I installed it from the Ubuntu PPA, tried it... You guessed it: It can rip Cars 2 DVD without any problem...

So as a conclusion, even if HandBrake documentation claims it is not a DVD ripper, if a DVD does not let itself get ripped, do not capitulate before giving HandBrake a try. You could very well save a few dozen euros in the process...

This post was tagged arccos, cars, disney, dvd, linux, rip and tips