dvd5One of the great features of Windows 7 is its improved codec support and this means you can easily play ripped DVD on Media Center Extenders (so far I have only  tested the Xbox 360). With Vista it was a big fiddly creating symbolic link files and Play List but with Windows 7 is very easy.

I am not sure this worked in earlier builds of Windows 7 but it works fine in build 7100, here is how I do it (it also works directly in Media Center)

  1. Create a folder for storing your ripped DVDs
  2. Add the ripped DVD folder to Media Center:
    1. Go to the Extender and enter the videos section
    2. Press the more info button (The X key on the 360 controller)
    3. Select Manage Library
    4. Select Add Folders to the library 
    5. Locate the DVD rip folder
    6. Select Next and finish off the wizard 
  3. Rip the DVD to a sub-folder of the main ripped DVD folder with your favourite ripping tool (I use DVD Decrypter and DVD Shrink to get rid of the bits I don’t want)
  4. Go to the folder where the videos files are stored and get rid of any .IFO, and .BUP files
  5. I find it best to tidy up the folder and only keep the main feature VOB files, so you can get rid of the menu video loop and extras by deleting the extra vob files
  6. Go to the Extender and enter the Videos section
  7. You should see your ripped DVD folder and inside that folder you will see your newly ripped DVD
  8. Go in to the folder and select Play All
  9. The movie will play in Media Center

I did find a slight pause as it loaded the next VOB file, you could get round this by merging the files in to one large VOB file ( I use a command line option like “Copy /b VTS_01_1.VOB + VTS_01_2.Vob VTS_01_3.Vob MainMovie.Vob”)

There may a better way but this is nice and quick and doesn’t take much effort to get it working on the 360

Thanks to Richard Miller for the tip


9 thoughts on “Playing Ripped DVDs on Media Center Extenders without conversion or playlists”
  1. You don’t need to use DVD Decrypter and DVD Shrink, just use DVD Shrink as it’s quite capable of ripping the discs as well and means you only rip the bits you need such as the main movie, you then won’t have to worry about cleaning up as you did in step 5.

    DVD Shrink also has an option in the output settings called ‘split vobs at 1gig boundaries’ or something like that which is on by default, turning this off will give you one big vob file.

  2. It works well and it is better than using transcode 360. I just used DVD Shrink and the suggestion from “bagal” above. Also, it works with both of my Linksys DMA 2200’s and Xbox 360.

    The run time is simular between the xbox 360 and the dma 2200. I thought the xbox 360 would have been a lot faster but this is not the case.

  3. batch file rename from VOB to Mpg
    Ren *.VOB *.mpg

    Batch file merge made simple
    copy /b *.mpg Mainfilm.mpg

    lots of ways to skin the same cat so to speak 🙂

    but thats nice to see Ian and a good post , thank you

    i would be most interested in findings with HDDVD .EVO files and there playability on a xbox360

  4. Have you ever tried my product – http://hi-techhabitats.com/transcoder21.aspx? It let’s you stream anything in your Dvd Library to your extenders – ripped discs, discs in dvd changers, even a disc in the dvd drive on the media center pc, with no loss of quality in sound or video. And it does all of this using the same Dvd Library interface that’s on the PC.

  5. Useful info …
    You guys may like to check out some DVD RIpper software below:
    Daniusoft DVD RIpper(shareware)
    P.s. This Daniusoft DVD Ripper ever helped my succeed in ripping tons of movie DVDs to media center losslessly .

    Not like some ordinary DVD rippers, it will not break the video into pieces, it will join all DVD titles and chapters and make them as one standalone video file, thus you can play it on your media center or USB drive.

Leave a Reply