[mythtv-users] OT: DVD Region and Format
Michael T. Dean
mtdean at thirdcontact.com
Mon Sep 11 21:13:43 UTC 2006
On 09/11/06 16:32, list at onnow.net wrote:
>Quoting White Joe <joe.white at consultant.volvo.com>:
>>I am in the US and interested in getting a DVD from the UK. It is a
>>region 2 DVD in PAL format. I have a Lite-On DVD burner in my Myth box.
>>MythTV (0.19) was installed using Jarod's FC4 installation instructions.
>>I currently use XINE. As things stand, am I able to play the DVD? If
>>not, are there adjustments that I can perform to make it possible?
>I am running .19 and have a liteon as well. I can import NTSC North
>America and PAL ( From the Netherlands ) DVD's as well. So yes AFAIK
If your hardware doesn't contain region-locked hardware/firmware (and
I'm not talking about RPC1 versus RPC2)...
Regional Playback Control (RPC) was implemented by the DVD Copy Control
Association (CCA) before the first DVD's were ever produced. RPC was
rolled out in two phases. The first phase did not require RPC
enforcements in DVD drives for computers. However, the second phase
requires even computer DVD drives to enforce RPC restriction. The DVD
CCA sent out a "reminder" (= thinly veiled threat to sue vendors--see
http://www.dvdcca.org/rpc.html) that after December 31, 1999, only Phase
II RPC drives could be manufactured and sold.
My DVD-ROM is an RPC2 drive and allows me to change the region 5 times.
Upon the 5th change, it can never again be changed (so it becomes stuck
in that region). If the drive is set to the same region as the disc,
the firmware will perform RPC decryption (so, make sure you use
regionset to specify the region you'll use most often). If not, the
software (xine, in this case--probably with the help of libdvdcss) can
crack the RPC DRM.
Some people go to the trouble of finding and installing mod'ed firmware
that "unlocks" all regions, allowing the DVD drive to do the region
decryption. I'll leave the discussion about the legality of doing this
to you and your lawyer.
However, this year, some vendors (including Matsushita--the brand of DVD
drive used by many Macs and ThinkPads) have begun shipping hardware that
will not even provide the region-encrypted data off the disc if there's
a mis-match between the hardware's and the disc's region settings. If
the hardware refuses to provide any data, there's nothing the software
can do to fix the issue (i.e. no data = nothing to decrypt).
Of course, none of this affects me as it would be a federal felony
offense for me, a US citizen, to play back an encrypted DVD on my DVD
player unless, of course, I were using an approved OS (Windows) and DVD
player software (WinDVD/PowerDVD/etc.).
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