Can HandBrake Rip Encrypted DVD on Mac or Windows? It Really Depends!

[Latest Updated: Jan.14, 2019 by Kistent Waung to HandBrake Resources]

HandBrake Encrypted DVD Ripping

This article shares things related to HandBrake ripping copy protection DVDs on macOS or Windows computer. Go ahead to know about HandBrake better and rip your encrypted DVDs smoothly in the right way.

As an over 15 years old video transcoding geek, HandBrake has grown up from a tiny BeOS program to powerful cross-platform freeware, amassing a large number of loyal computer users.

With this video and DVD converter tool, users can handle many media conversion works on macOS, Windows and more systems. It not only supports converting common MKV/AVI/MP4/M2TS/TS video, but also supports ripping DVD-Video from disc or ISO image to MP4 & MKV with different codecs, say H.264, MPEG4, and H.265.

As to digitizing DVDs, since there're many kinds of DVDs, old or new, protected by different anti-copy mechanisms, here comes a common problem on HandBrake ripping encrypted DVDs. To get it clear on whether HandBrake can rip your copy protected DVD or not, why HandBrake goes under ripping your locked DVD and how to fix this issue, let's get started together to check three things you must know on HandBrake right away.

number 1The 1st thing you should know on HandBrake Ripping Encrypted DVD
- HandBrake alone only features ripping unencrypted DVD to MP4/MKV now.

HandBrake, currently 1.2.0, only accepts loading DVD content with no copy protection. That's to say when opening the encrypted DVD with HandBrake, it may stuck scanning or show an error message saying "No valid source or titles found" or similar. If you export the HandBrake activity log, you will find the "Encrypted DVD support unavailable" note.

HandBrake alone cannot rip encrypted DVD

Then how to rip copy protected DVD with HandBrake? Just move on to the next.

number 2The 2nd thing you should know on HandBrake Ripping Encrypted DVD
- HandBrake, working with libdvdcss.dll, is able to rip css-encrypted DVDs.

libdvdcss is a free software library file developed by VideoLan to access and override the CSS (Content Scramble System) encryption in DVD. It's widely used in many DVD players like VLC and MPlayer. Even HandBrake had this library built in to embrace internal DVD decryption ability before the version of 0.9.3.

Well, in other words, you can decrypt css-encypted DVDs with HandBrake on Windows and Mac in these ways:

a). Download the package of HandBrake 0.9.2 or earlier versions to enjoy its DVD decryption. (Not recommended for the lack of hardware acceleration support in those outdated programs.)
b). If your computer has VLC or MPlayer pre-installed, HandBrake would dynamically load their copy of libdvdcss to deal with encrypted DVD.
c). Directly download libdvdcss from VideoLAN.
For macOS users, libdvdcss must be installed. But everyone should note that macOS, starting from El Capitan, has introduced SIP (a security feature) to prevent libdvdcss from installing, so users have to disable SIP or use Homebrew (a command line tool) to fix this problem.
And for Windows users, they only need to place the downloaded libdvdcss file into the program folder of HandBrake before using it.

HandBrake + libdvdcss can rip css encrypted DVDs

Anyway, the ultimate purpose of the three methods is to combine libdvdcss library with HandBrake to defeat CSS.

Question Mark Then can libdvdcss defeat all copy protections in DVD movies?
- Absolutely not. As is mentioned above, it only features disabling CSS. So even with libdvdcss, HandBrake still has no idea on other non-CSS encryptions like AACS (Advanced Access Content System[wiki]), a more complicated DRM scheme with a higher level of security to supersede CSS.

number 3The 3rd thing you should know on HandBrake Ripping Encrypted DVD
- To rip those copy protected DVDs beyond the capability of HandBrake + libdvdcss, you must turn to some powerful DVD ripper else.

When HandBrake can't scan/load DVD video or get chapters from an encrypted disc, the DVD owner is suggested to get some HandBrake alternative to remove the copyguard method.

Making a long story short, let's see how WinX DVD Ripper Platinum rips encrypted DVD on Windows and Mac. Below is an actual operation on ripping Marvel DVD movie - Captain America: The Winter Soldier on Windows 10 (64-bit). If you wanna do your DVD ripping mission right away, insert your DVD into the DVD drive and get WinX DVD Ripper downloaded and installed to standby.

Best HandBrake Alternative Software Download

WinX DVD Ripper Platinum - The strongest DVD ripping software to embrace any encrypted 99-title movie DVDs, TV series DVDs, workout/music and homemade DVDs.

  • Protected/Scratched DVDs supported
  • GPU hardware acceleration enabled

For Windows and Mac only. If you are a mobile user, please click here.

Step 1 - Decrypt and Load DVD Video
Run WinX DVD Ripper Platinum, and click "DVD Disc" to select source DVD disc and click "OK". Usually in seconds, the DVD video will be freed from its copy protection and show in the software with right title checked and all (video, audio and subtitles) data available to adjust.

rip encrypted captain american DVD with winx dvd ripper

Step 2 - Choose Output Format or Profile
When the full DVD movie is imported, an output profile window will pop up. In this cover-all profile list, you can set MP4, AVI, WMV, FLV or any other video formats as target format.

If you're a video noob, the device profile is more proper, because you only need to select the device you'd love to enjoy DVD movie on, say iPhone Xs, iPad Pro, Xbox, Samsung, Surface and such, all of which are preset with the right media format and codec.

For those who wanna make 1:1 copy of physical discs to store on media server or hard drive, this ripper offers DVD backup modes to clone DVD to ISO image/DVD Folder, backup the full tile or copy main title to a single MPG.

rip encrypted captain american DVD with winx dvd ripper steps

Step 3 - Rip Encrypted DVD Video into Computer
Output format or device selected, it's time to "RUN" the DVD ripping at hardware accelerated speed (if your computer GPU is qualified). To avoid unexpected failure in converting encrypted DVDs, "Safe Mode" is recommended to tick. But in this way, it will take longer time to rip the encrypted DVD.

Step 4 - Test & Watch the Movie Video
When the DVD ripping process is finished, ensure the final video is OK with VLC.

New HandBrake 1.2.0 is only available for 64-bit Windows 7-10 & Mac OS X 10.10-10.14. And WinX DVD Ripper Platinum has wider OS support for Windows and Mac:
For Windows: Windows 2000, 2003, XP, Vista, Windows /8/8.1/10 (32- and 64-bit)
For Mac: Mac OS X Leopard/Snow Leopard/Mountain Lion/Mavericks/Yosemite/El Capitan, macOS Sierra/High Sierra/Mojave

WinX DVD Ripper Platinum Box

WinX DVD Ripper Platinum

The No.1 DVD ripping software which enables you to convert encrypted DVD to MP4, AVI, MP3 for playback on Android/iOS/Windows phones and pads, chromecast, Xbox, TV etc.

For PC and Mac only. Go to mobile page.

Disclaimer: Digiarty Software doesn't advocate ripping protected DVDs for commercial purpose & suggests referring to DVD copyright laws in your country before doing so.

About the Author

Author - Kistent Waung    Kistent Waung@kistent2014

Joined Digiarty for 4 years as a website editor and technical writer, she focuses on giving readers all-around but lifestyle tech reviews & tips on hot gadgets and multimedia solutions. In the leisure time, she has a mania for travelling, baseball and transcendental meditation.

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