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How to Copy DVD on macOS Big Sur, Catalina, and Lower

Learn how to make a digital or DVD copy of unprotected/copy-protected DVD on Mac?

Most DVD collectors have needs to keep their discs for longer time without being scratched, broken or lost. But fragile physical optical discs frequently encounter various accidents especially during house cleaning or moving. So, we need to make a copy of our DVD collection before discs get damaged. And sometimes we copy DVD to Mac so that we can watch movie later or when we are on the road without having the DVD along.

Well, how to download DVDs to Mac hard drive? How to copy a DVD to a blank DVD on Mac? This tutorial will include detailed instructions.

How to Make It Easy to Copy DVD on Mac?

WinX DVD Ripper for Mac can copy ANY DVD (unprotected and protected DVD) to ISO image, VIDEO_TS Folder or single MKV/MPEG2 file in a few of clicks. It can also digitalize DVDs to MP4 (H.264/HEVC), MOV, MKV, AVI, iPhone, Android, iTunes, iMovie without costing much time. Thanks to the cutting-edge GPU hardware acceleration tech, it can handle the compute-intensive DVD copy task from CPU to expert GPU, 47X real time faster than before, up to 5 minutes to copy a full DVD on Mac.

Please DO NOT use WinX DVD Ripper to rip rental DVDs.
For Windows and Mac only. If you are a mobile user, please click here

Part 1. How to Copy Unprotected DVD on Mac

Mac OS X (rebranded to macOS in 2016 with the release of 10.12 Sierra) attaches a feature of copying unprotected DVDs. Disk Utility, designed as performing disk tasks, makes DVD copy become much easier. However, Disk Utility can't work with copy-protected DVDs. It is usually used to free copy DVDs that you made using iDVD or something. If you want to copy commercial movie releases, see the copy protected DVD on Mac method.

Now, let's learn how to save DVD to Mac using Disk Utility.

Step 1. Insert the DVD you want to copy into Mac disc drive. Modern Macbooks or iMacs ditched the disc drive since 2012, you can get an external drive such as Apple USB SuperDrive to load the disc before making a DVD copy.

Step 2. Open Applications and click Disk Utility to launch it.

Step 3. Select your DVD under the External header in the left sidebar.

Step 4. Click the File menu, click New, and select Disk Image from "your DVD name".

Download DVDs to Mac using Disk Utility
How to copy DVDs on Mac using Disk Utility

Then, a window will pop up asking you to input file name for this DVD copy into Save As bar, and specify a destination folder to save this DVD copy. Make sure the destination folder has enough space to store the DVD copy file. As for Image Format, you should choose DVD/CD Master for quality retaining without compression. Also, encryption should be to none. Click Save.

Step 5. After that, Disk Utility will begin creating disk image for your DVD. Depending on your computer's speed, it may take 30-60 minutes or more. Once done, you can get a .cdr file on your Mac. Then, you can eject your DVD.

If you want to copy DVD to a blank DVD disc on Mac, users using Mac OS X 10.11 (El Capitan) or above can burn the disk image you just created from the Finder while eariler Mac OS X users can still use Disk Utility. Here are the step-by-step guides.

How to burn disk image to DVD on Mac OS X 10.11 (El Capitan) or higher

Step 1. Right click on the disc image file you want to copy to DVD.

Step 2. Choose "Burn Disc Image [disc name] to Disc" from the shortcut menu, then follow the instructions.

Burn disc image to DVD from Mac Finder
Burn disc image to DVD from Mac Finder

How to burn disk image to DVD on Mac OS X 10.10 (Yosemite) or lower

Step 1. Open Disk Utility, then go to the Images menu and select Burn.

Burn disc image to DVD using Disk Utility
Burn disc image to DVD using Disk Utility

Step 2. In the "Select Image to Burn" window select the disk image which you just created from your DVD, then click the Burn button.

Step 3. Now put a blank DVD-R disk into your disc drive and wait for the disk image to be burned onto this blank DVD disk. Like creating disc image, burning process can also easily take 30-60 minutes or more.

So above are the steps on how to free copy unprotected DVD to Mac using Disk Utility and how to free copy DVD to DVD on Mac using Disk Utility or Finder.

Part 2. How to Copy Protected DVD on Mac

There is no built-in software to copy protected DVD on macOS 11 Big Sur or lower versions. To download an encrypted DVD to Mac, you have to install third-party DVD copy software. In this part, we'll introduce two programs to copy protected DVDs to Mac.

1. Use WinX DVD Ripper for Mac to copy protected DVD on Mac

Main features of WinX DVD Ripper for Mac:

  • Bypass copy protection from DVD, including CSS, region code, RCE, UOPs, Sony ArccOS, Disney DRM protection, and even new schemes on latest released DVDs.
  • Convert DVD to digital files in diverse video formats like MP4 and MOV for playback on devices, editing in software, sharing online etc.
  • 1:1 Clone DVD to ISO image and VIDEO_TS folder. Copy DVD to MKV, and MPEG2 file with full or main title.
  • High Quality Engine delivers almost original quality of the DVD while Hyper-threading Tech, Multi-core support and hardware acceleration technology guarantee the fastest DVD copy speed. It may only take 5 minutes to copy a DVD on a Mac.

Now let's download the WinX DVD Ripper for Mac on your MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, iMac, Mac mini, Mac Pro, or iMac Pro. It is fully compatible with macOS 11 Big Sur, macOS Catalina, Mojave, High Sierra, etc. Once you finish installtion, follow the steps to copy protected DVD to Mac.

Step 1: Insert DVD disc into DVD drive.

If there is no drive for DVD on your Mac, please connect an external optical drive. Then insert the DVD into the drive. Feel free to insert any DVD, it will freely rip protected discs on Mac without problem.

Step 2: Launch WinX DVD Ripper for Mac and import DVD to scan.

Hit DVD Disc button on navigation bar to import source DVD. A couple of seconds later after loading DVD, all titles will be presented and main title will be selected automatically. Meanwhile, Output Profile dialog box pops up.

Save DVDs to Mac
Save DVDs to Mac

Step 3: Choose output profile.

You can select one format as output from listed categories (General Profiles like MP4, MOV, MKV, DVD Backup Profile, Mobile Video Profile, Web Video Profile etc.). What's more, a new DVD copy mode – DVD to DVD will be soon added helping copy your DVD to a blank DVD disc.

Step 4: Start copying DVD on Mac.

Browse to set destination folder and hit RUN button to start copying DVD on your Macintosh computer.

Disclaimer: Digiarty 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. Still have some trouble about how to copy DVD on Mac? Please feel free to Mail Us >>

2. Use the combination of HandBrake and libdvdcss to copy protected DVD on Mac

HandBrake cannot copy protected disc out of the box. You need to download and install libdvdcss for HandBrake to help access DVDs.

Now, let me show you how to install and use libdvdcss with HandBrake on Mac to copy protected DVDs.

Step 1. Install libdvdcss on Mac.

It's easy to do this if you use Mac OS X Yosemite or older OS. Simply download the libdvdcss.pkg here and double click on it to install.

If you use Mac OS X El Capitan or later, the process will be a little bit complicated due to a security feature called System Integrity Protection arriving with EI Capitan. First of all, we need to install a command line tool called Homebrew. Once done, press Command+Space and search for Terminal to open a command line window. Next, type in brew install libdvdcss and hit enter. Then, Homebrew will start downloading and installing the libdvdcss library. Once done, HandBrake should be able to access copy-protected DVDs.

Install libdvdcss for HandBrake on Mac
Install libdvdcss for HandBrake on Mac

Step 2. Install HandBrake.

The latest HandBrake version 1.4.1 is available for macOS 10.12 and later. If use macOS 10.11 or earlier, you can download old versions.

Step 3. Copy DVD on Mac with HandBrake.

Insert target DVD into your Mac's disc drive and open HandBrake. Under Source Selection, you should select your DVD.

Then HandBrake will scan DVD titles.

Once done, make sure selected title and chapters are what you want. Additionally, you need to specify preset and format (MP4, MKV or WebM). If necessary, you can adjust video audio parameters and more.

Save DVD to Mac with HandBrake
Save DVD to Mac with HandBrake

Next click the Browse button at the bottom right to specify save path and output file name.

When you finish all settings, now simply click the Start button. now, HandBrake will begin copying DVD to your Mac.

Part 3. Which Is the Best DVD Copy Software for Mac?

In this article, we've shared 3 ways with you to copy DVD to Mac. Well, which is the best way? The following table indicates a comparison of several aspects of the three Mac DVD copying programs. You'll have the answer after read this table.


Disk Utility

WinX DVD Ripper for Mac
Free Download

Free Download

Supported source DVDs

Unprotected home movie DVDs.

Both unprotected and copy-protected DVDs are supported.

Unprotected DVDs. (With libdvdcss, it can handle some protected discs.)

Supported output formats

Support copying DVD to disc image and DVD to DVD.

* No mainstreaming formats.

  1. Support 1:1 cloning DVD to ISO image and VIDEO_TS folder.
  2. Support copying DVD to MKV, MPEG, MP4, MOV, and more.
  3. Support converting DVD to MP3 and other audio formats.

* In total, there are over 350 output profiles covering all popular formats, devices, social media platforms, and so on.

Support ripping DVD to MP4, MKV, and WebM only.

* No 1:1 DVD copy options.

Speed (vary with computer configuration)

30-60 minutes or more.

The fastest it takes copying a DVD is 5 minutes only.

Over 10 minutes or longer.


Keep original quality

Keep original quality

Obvious quality loss.

Any edit features?

Not supported

Cut, crop, merge, deinterlace, subtitle

Cut, crop, deinterlace, etc.

Change codec, bitrate, frame rate, sample rate, aspect ratio, resolution, channel

Not supported




author - Donna Peng

Donna Peng twitter icon

Donna Peng's fascination with multimedia began at an early age - shortly after she licked the physical disc and then she's been obsessed ever since. Her decade-long career at Digiarty after the graduation has seen her unmatched expertise in the field of DVD, digital video, software and anything related to home theatre. She is currently fascinated with photography.

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