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Old 03-25-2015, 11:53 PM   #1
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Storing Movies on Hard Drive

I just finished emptying all the crap that we accumulated out of the coach (RV) over the last 4 years, JEEEEZZ filled up 1 of the bay's of my 4 car garage. While doing this, I counted over 100 DVD's that take up a lot of space.
This got me thinking, ( a lot of smoke coming outa my ears) why not copy all these onto an external hard drive. This to reduce the space that all the movies take up and maybe even all the music I have stored also.
I'm using a Mini Mac at home and a Mac Book Pro to take to the boat. Problem is I'm having a hell of a time finding a good program that is easy to use that will allow me to copy movies onto an external hard drive.


Anyone got a solution?

Thanks"........John
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Old 03-26-2015, 12:16 AM   #2
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Yes, but it's still a complex process. I use the following, and have created a library of several hundred movies. ll this in on a Mac

1) I use MakeMKV to extract the movies from DVDs and Blurays and turn them into MKV files. The advantage of MakeMKV is that it can process BluRay disks as well as DVDs. One of the trickier parts of running this program is that you have to figure out which of the "tracks" on the disk is the actual movie. Sometimes it's obvious, and sometimes not so much. I usually do this part as a side project while I'm doing something else like web browsing or watch TV.

2) Use Handbrake to convert the MKV files into MV4 files that are playable on iTunes and an Apple TV. You can create a queue of files to process in Handbrake, so I typically collect up all the MKV files that I created during the day, and let Handbrake convert them overnight. It's a slow process.

3) At this point you can import the files into iTunes, but if you take one more step it will create significantly better results. Use iDentify to find all the meta data for each movie, and attach it to the .MV4 file. iDentify searches a variety of Movie databases like IMDB and gathers the correct title, genre, plot synopsys, major actors, artwork, etc. If you do this before importing them into itunes, then all the info will show up in itunes and the movies will be categorized and searchable by genre etc.

It's a tedious process, but it works and the end results are good.
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Old 03-26-2015, 01:39 AM   #3
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Thanks Twisted!

Am I correct in assuming that these are all separate software or apps?

I may end up PMing you.

John
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Old 03-26-2015, 06:21 AM   #4
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I use tunebite a software program that copies what is played on the screen. Movies on hard drives is popular here in the Caribbean as space aboard is valuable and for almost all of us there is no TV.

Just as with trading books and music swapping movies on the hard drives is frequent. Legal issues are many.
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Old 03-26-2015, 09:07 AM   #5
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I use DVDFab. Works a treat and I especially like the fact that I can copy ONLY the main movie in English if I want--skip all the menus, special features, and other languages--which can dramatically reduce the amount of space needed.
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Old 03-26-2015, 09:44 AM   #6
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If all you are converting are DVDs, then there are a number of alternatives to MakeMKV, and some can eliminate the intermediate processing step with Handbrake. MDRP is an example of a program that will "rip" a DVD and directly create an MV4.

It becomes much more difficult if you want to store BluRay disks on your hard drive since they are encrypted. That's where MakeMKV comes into play. I have yet to find a disk it can't convert.

For a while I was using MDRP for DVDs to avoid the intermediate Handbrake processing step. But after a while I realized it was actually taking me longer than doing the conversion in two steps using MakeMKV + Handbrake. When you process the DVD in a single step, it takes a much longer time that just extracting the data and putting it in an MKV file. I found the fastest way to convert a batch of DVDs was to do the first step quickly with MakeMKV and crank through a bunch of DVDs while watching TV and otherwise vegging in the evening. Then let the long conversion process run automatically overnight by queuing up all the conversions for Handbrake to crunch while I was sleeping.
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Old 03-26-2015, 09:48 AM   #7
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I use tunebite a software program that copies what is played on the screen.
I've heard about programs like that, but never tried them. It would be great to be able to stream and capture a netflix video when you have access to good internet, then play it back later when you don't. Kind of like Tivo, but without it.

How is the video quality?
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Old 03-26-2015, 10:07 AM   #8
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We almost never watch a movie twice. So we rent and download from iTunes. If we wanted to watch it again, we would rent it again.
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Old 03-26-2015, 10:14 AM   #9
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We almost never watch a movie twice. So we rent and download from iTunes. If we wanted to watch it again, we would rent it again.
That works great as long as you have sufficient internet. What we've focused on is building up a collection of movies that we can watch when we have no internet, or where it's too slow or metered and impractical for streaming or a download.
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Old 03-26-2015, 10:37 AM   #10
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I've heard about programs like that, but never tried them. It would be great to be able to stream and capture a netflix video when you have access to good internet, then play it back later when you don't. Kind of like Tivo, but without it.

How is the video quality?
Video is satisfactory. You have several format choices which will vary the size of the file and the quality. Also the format for playback which is important depending on your playback device.

What is better since you are not defeating the copyright protection on the DVD you are not violating the US law against software which neutralizes the copyright protection.
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Old 03-26-2015, 11:14 AM   #11
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Thanks everyone for the imput. As I suspected, it gets more complicated than just burning a copy. Was sorta hoping that a one software solution was available, guess not.
The intent is to store movies and access them when no Internet is available. I've talked to several people about sat tv reception and it gets spotty the farther north you go along the ICW of Canada, hence the reason for storing movies on a hard drive.
I guess the next question is how much space does a typical movie take up? I've heard from 15-20 meg per hour of movie. So a typical 2 hour movie takes up about 30-40 meg. I'm assuming that is compressed. Is that pretty accurate?
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Old 03-26-2015, 04:39 PM   #12
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My experience is 700 meg plus per movie.
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Old 03-26-2015, 05:47 PM   #13
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700meg sounds about right fro standard definition. BlueRay will be about 4gb per movie. But a 3TB drive costs about 5 cents, so it's really no big deal.
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Old 03-26-2015, 08:26 PM   #14
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DVDs are encrypted too. You need a program that can decode the encryption and put it on your hardrive. The decryption process violates the piracy laws.

An alternative is to get a DVD player program that will play a DVD from a folder. The player sees the folder as a hardware DVD, but the files still have the encryption on them. You can copy these to the hard drive using Windows file explorer. You will get a folder with a bunch of .VOB files in it. There are a number of programs that will play these files as a DVD (e.g. BlazeDVD).

Depending on what you do with the .VOB files may violate the piracy laws. If you keep them for yourself from a disk you bought you are probably ok. If you copy the files from a disk you got from a library, you are in a grey area. If you give the files to anyone else or received them from someone, you are definitely violating the piracy laws.

The average DVD disk will result in a folder size of about 7-9 Gb. A Blue-ray disk can be up to 25Gb.

Be aware that Canadian authorities are on the lookout for these sorts of things (at least at airports). They can confiscate any or all of your electronic devices if they suspect that there is pirated content on them for examination. You may get your stuff back in several weeks if they don't find anything untoward on them. If there is pirated content, well.....
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Old 03-29-2015, 03:10 AM   #15
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Why not just get one of those large 200 CD carrying cases and put them in it?
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Old 03-29-2015, 03:31 AM   #16
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Why not just get one of those large 200 CD carrying cases and put them in it?
Space. A cruiser who lives on his boat for months at a time with no access to off boat storage has a continual battle with how much can be brought on board. This is particularly true once you leave the first world countries and have to stock large numbers of spare parts because many things are not available locally.
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Old 03-29-2015, 03:51 AM   #17
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I admit that I know very little about long term cruising/live aboard (thus why I am on here to learn) but is something that is 14.5 x 12.2 x 5.0 really that hard to find space for??

TekNmotion 320 Disc Case/Organizer, Black - Walmart.com
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Old 03-29-2015, 05:18 PM   #18
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Space. A cruiser who lives on his boat for months at a time with no access to off boat storage has a continual battle with how much can be brought on board. This is particularly true once you leave the first world countries and have to stock large numbers of spare parts because many things are not available locally.

It is a similar mindset for my oldest son in the military. He is returning soon from two years serving in Italy. He sold his car and the balance of his worldly possessions fit into a suitcase, carry on, and 3 well packed duffle bags. He'd make a great cruiser. He also has a 600+ title movie collection. Jewel cases and discs are a waste of space in his world so only purchases electronic copies via iTunes etc.
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Old 03-30-2015, 07:59 AM   #19
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An alternative is to get a DVD player program that will play a DVD from a folder. The player sees the folder as a hardware DVD, but the files still have the encryption on them. You can copy these to the hard drive using Windows file explorer. You will get a folder with a bunch of .VOB files in it. There are a number of programs that will play these files as a DVD (e.g. BlazeDVD).

The average DVD disk will result in a folder size of about 7-9 Gb. A Blue-ray disk can be up to 25Gb.

A program like that would run on a laptop (for example) with the display routed (as with HDMI) to a larger TV screen? A simple copy from DVD to hard drive gets all the necessary files, preserves all the necessary formatting, etc.? Some suggested player program names?



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Why not just get one of those large 200 CD carrying cases and put them in it?
Quote:
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Space. A cruiser who lives on his boat for months at a time with no access to off boat storage has a continual battle with how much can be brought on board. This is particularly true once you leave the first world countries and have to stock large numbers of spare parts because many things are not available locally.

This is what we do now, without the jewel boxes. Our current folder holds about 100 disks and is the size of a 3" binder. I don't begrudge that amount of space, yet... but then again, 100 is a relatively modest "library" and required space for this approach could become an issue sometimes in our future.


FWIW, there a loooong thread on cruisersforum abou the topic. I haven't seen solutions that don't look like too much work, right now... so that "just play it from a folder" option sounds about the easiest I've heard, so far.

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Old 03-30-2015, 01:32 PM   #20
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Thanks Twisted!

Am I correct in assuming that these are all separate software or apps?

I may end up PMing you.

John
Please don't take conversations like this offline. There are others whom benefit from these.

Take the nonsense about "What marina are you in? I'm in <blah>." is the stuff to take offline. This stuff I, for one, am interested in. I'm sure there are others.
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