[mythtv-users] DVD iso won't show menus

Michael T. Dean mtdean at thirdcontact.com
Wed Sep 5 03:33:14 UTC 2012

On 09/04/2012 07:40 PM, Michael Herman wrote:
> Hi there,
> I am new to this mailing list; although I have used Mythtv for quite 
> awhile (although I still feel like a beginner at it).  I recently got 
> a large enough harddrive that I wanted to put my DVD collection on it 
> as .iso files.  I followed the directions 
> at: http://www.cmdln.org/2010/01/22/backing-up-disney-dvds/ to create 
> a .iso file of Hunger Games.  When I play it through the video browser 
> it plays a bunch of previews at the start of the disk, each of which 
> seems to be a seperate chapter of the DVD.  But after that it just 
> quits and never shows the Main Menu.  If I play it outside of Mythtv 
> with VLC or mplayer it goes stright to the main menu.
> I read that mythtv doesn't support menus but it seemed dated and I 
> couldn't find info for Mythtv .25 which I am using. Is there anything 
> obvious that I should try?  I could always use an external player but 
> I wanted to see if mythtv would be fine so I didn't have to mess with 
> the remote control working in a different application.

MythTV supports DVD menus for compliant DVDs.  Disney is notorious for 
creating non-compliant DVDs using structural protection (i.e. errors on 
the disc) to prevent copying.  Generally, a player (hardware or 
software) will play a DVD with structural protection without problems 
because the navigation information keeps the player from reading the 
"broken" data.  Ripping the disc, however, entails copying all the data 
on the disc--which means you'd attempt to read the broken data and get 
an error.  This is why you had to use the hack you referenced to attempt 
to rip the disc.  However, I wouldn't be surprised to learn that the rip 
of such a CD is unplayable by MythTV (we have no code, whatsoever, to 
try to work around copyright-protection mechanisms--including structural 
protection--even though many (most?) other DVD player packages do).

So, I'd recommend sticking the actual disc in the drive and attempting 
to play it with MythTV.  If it works, that means that the approach you 
had to use to rip the broken DVD gave you an even-more-broken rip.  You 
can then take the disc back to the store and tell them you're returning 
it because it's not compliant with the DVD specification, so it can't be 
played on your player.  If playback of the original disc doesn't work, 
it may or may not be the structural protections causing problems in 
MythTV--you'd probably have to dig deep into the code and the actual 
disc/playback to find out what's happening and whether it's a MythTV bug 
or a non-compliant disc that's causing the failure.  (And remember that 
other DVD playback software does try to incorporate workarounds for 
protected discs--so just because it works in <insert DVD player name>, 
doesn't mean that it's not the structural protection or that it's a 
compliant disc.)


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