How to copy a DVD

This is probably a very naive question but I want to make a copy of a DVD using my Mac and I’d like to know what tools people use for this.

The situation is this – my sister sent a DVD (March of the Penguins) to my father recently but the DVD won’t play in my father’s DVD player because my sister lives in the US and the DVD is only for that region.

What is the best way to fix it so my father can watch this DVD? (Feel free to email me at if you don’t wish to leave a comment)

12 thoughts on “How to copy a DVD”

  1. You go out and buy the DVD in the shop otherwise those pengiuns will have to make do with Porshecs rather then ferrari’s. Are you going to deny the penguins their Ferrari’s by using something like

    So when you are watching the pegiuns and wondering why are they in the cold. it is because you used something like to deny them a nice air conditioned hummvy.

    Also instead of using something like you could buy an american dvd player. if you are likily to get many dvds from the states. 🙂

  2. You can use the Disk Tool (?) to make a disk image, then burn it (I presume. I’m in a hurry out the door).

    For conversion to another format -> Handbrake

  3. Simon – thanks, downloaded and will try in the next couple of days. The full version is $99 though! Fortunately the trial allows burning of 1 dvd and that’s all I need for now!

    EWI – I don’t know if that’s strip the regionalisation out of the dvd.

    Dave – I must find out the model of his player and try this too – it looks like an intriguing option –’d!

  4. while tom is off celebrating his bloggie (which is sitting on my desk here!),

    I will concur with EWI and suggest Handbrake for Mac, or else the (very excellent) software called DVD Shrink for PC (spit!)

    Congrats Tom!


  5. Hi Tom,

    First off – big congratulations on the Blog Award, it is well deserved.

    I’ve been copying all the DVDs I buy for quite a while now and I give the copies to the kids to break whilst the originals are locked away.

    On the PC, most European DVDs are very easy to copy and all you need is a free tool called DVDShrink from:
    It removes the region encoding and shrinks the DVD to fit on a single-sided DVD-R/ R/RW.

    But US DVDs are getting more and more DRM and I have ended up purchasing AnyDVD and CloneDVD to copy/play those ones. The DRM is changing so often that these packages are often updated once per week just to keep up. If you do buy similar for the Mac, make sure the package in question gets similar updates.

    I second the idea of just removing the region lock on your DVD player. In general all cheap “no name” players can be de-regioned with just a few key presses on your remote. Of the big names, my Philips was trivial, Samsung too but my sis-in-laws JVC could not be modified. Check out for more details.

  6. Sorry – you’re right; that was part of a longer reply that I quickly edited down. As to making it fit after you’ve ripped with Handbrake I’d suggest using the basic version of ‘forty-two’.

    Btw – congratulations!

  7. You can also just buy a multi-region dvd player for around €60, though they aren’t advertised as such. I bought a Daewoo in a certain new superstore in Fermoy and found the hack on the web somewhere, so now I buy DVDs from regularly.

    I also have a brother working in the far east who sends DVDs home for my kids too, and it has no problems playing them all.

  8. use mac the ripper and if you have toast 7 you can copy the unlocked decrypted version no problems to a dvd it no problem. the program popcorn also by roxio will let you do it – it is built into toast 7 but is probably still available on its own. mac the ripper is free

  9. Hello Tom,
    Better late than never, only stumbled across your query today just by chance! I am pretty
    certain I could fix your problem without the need to burn a copy of the dvd.

    The problem could be solved by entering a mastercode for your father’s dvd player which would allow it to play any region dvd. If you are still interested – let me know the make and model of your fathers dvd player and I might be able to fix it for free by sending you the short instructions by email. It has worked on mine and even without the correct model no. still got it to work with NO risk to equipment. The only problem is not all dvd players can do this but there is only one way to find out and as it will cost you anything what have you got to lose.

    The Doc.

  10. Doc.

    thanks for the comment – I’m not sure of my father’s model off the top of my head but it is a Philips combo VCR and DVD player, very similar looking to the <a href="<catalog_gb_consumer/categories<home_audio_video_gr_gb_consumer/categoriesDVP 3020 but probably an older model (he has it 2 years or so).

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