Copying DVDs to computer is a useful way to back up your collection or to watch movies without a DVD player. However, there are still users on forums asking which is the best program to copy DVDs to computers running Windows 11/10 or macOS. There are many DVD-ripping tools that can copy the video files from DVD discs to computers or laptops. If you want to do it fast without error, follow this guide. In this post, we have the best ways to download DVD movies to your computer, no matter you want to transfer homemade or protected DVDs.
Disclaimer: The legality to copy DVDs to your computer is equivocal currently and you are strongly suggested to use this instruction in accordance to the law of your country. Please do not produce a copy of DVD owned by others for any purpose. We in no way endorse violation of the valid rights of copyright holders.
#1. Best Way to Rip Protected DVDs to Computer Mac/Windows
Platform: Mac (macOS Ventura or earlier) and Windows (11/10 or earlier)
Best for: Download homemade/protected DVDs to computers
MacX DVD Ripper Pro is the top software to rip DVDs to computer with optimum quality and fast speed. You can make a 100% exact copy of DVD on computer in ISO image, MPEG2, or MKV format, or save DVD to computer in MP4, MOV, AVI, MKV, WMV, MP3 or any other digital formats. It takes 5 minutes only to copy a DVD to computer in MPG without quality loss. And transferring a DVD to computer in MP4 or other digital formats is 5x faster than other tools.
The biggest strength of this DVD to computer copy software is that it supports DVDs protected by region codes, CSS, RCE, UOPs, ARccOS, Disney X-Project DRM, etc. Old, new, damaged, scratched, 99-title DVDs are all supported. You can easily download a DVD to your computer without error, no matter it's from Warner Bros, Disney, Paramount, Sony, or other studios.
How to Rip a Protected DVD to Computer (Windows/macOS) in Clicks?
Step 1. Free download the DVD to computer copy software. Run the program and insert your DVD into the optical drive of your computer or an external DVD drive. Click "DVD Disc" and navigate to the source DVD. You can also import DVD folder or ISO image saved on your computer.
Step 2. It will take several seconds to remove the copy protection, if any, and find the correct movie title of the DVD. Then it will bring up an output format window. You need to decide which format that you'd like to download the DVD to your computer. For example, you can choose General Profiles from the left column, and select to copy your DVD to your computer in MP4 video.
Step 3. If you want to save a digital copy of DVD on your computer Windows/macOS for safe backup, you can choose DVD Backup from the left column and choose main title/full title copy, ISO image, or MKV to keep 100% original DVD quality.
Step 4. Click Done once you choose a format. Back on the main interface, you can click on the selected DVD title to adjust the audio and subtitle track that you want to download. Click on the Edit button to crop, add subtitles, trim, etc.
After all the settings, click the "Browse" button to set a folder on your computer to save the DVD copy file. Then click "RUN" to start copying a protected DVD to your computer or laptop.
#2. How to Copy DVDs to Computer Windows/Mac with Handbrake
Platform: Windows 11/10/7/earlier, macOS, and Linux
Best for: Download home DVDs to computer with customization settings
Handbrake is a popular free software for copying DVDs to a computer on Windows 11/10, macOS, and other systems. It offers a wide range of features and settings for transferring DVD videos to computer into various formats, including MP4, MKV, and more. There are various customization options, including video and audio codecs, bitrates, and frame rates to help users adjust the ripped DVD video.
Handbrake has options to rip DVDs with hardware encoders. So it's relatively fast to upload a DVD on your Windows/Mac computers or laptops. As it only supports non-protected or homemade DVD and Blu-ray discs, Handbrake stands as the top choice to rip a homemade DVD to computer.
How to Copy DVDs to Computer Free with Handbrake?
Step 1. Go to the official site of Handbrake and download the correct version for your Windows 11/10 or macOS computer. Handbrake is able to copy protected DVDs with the help libdvdcss. So if you need to copy movie files from DVD to computer, you need to get libdvdcss as well. Learn how to install libdvdcss for Handbrake >>
Step 2. Insert the DVD you want to save into your computer's DVD drive and open Handbrake. It should be able to load the DVD automatically. If not, click on the "Source" button and select your DVD from the list.
Step 3. Choose the title and chapters you want to copy. Handbrake with libdvdcss will choose the right title for you by default. You can select the desired title and chapters by clicking on the checkboxes next to them.
Step 4. Next to the Preset section, click the drop-down menu and choose a preset for the DVD copy. To transfer a DVD to computer, you're not suggested to choose a HD or higher preset. 576P or 480P should be enough.
Step 5. Under Summary, you can choose from a variety of output formats, such as MP4, MKV, or WebM. You can click on the Video tab to make some other adjustment. From the dropdown menu of Video Encoder, decide if you want to use H.264, hardware encoder like VideoToolBox, H.265, or other encoder for the ripping.
You can also adjust other settings such as the quality, bitrate, framerate, and more. But if you're not sure their meanings, just leave them as default.
Step 6. Choose the destination folder on your Mac/PC computer for the copied DVD file. Start the encoding process by clicking on the "Start" button. Handbrake will now begin downloading the selected DVD title and chapters to your computer.
The time it takes to copy a DVD depends on various factors such as the length of the DVD, the output format, and your computer's processing power. Once the encoding process is complete, you should have a digital copy of your DVD saved to your computer.
#3. How to Save DVDs to Computer Windows/Mac with VLC
Platform: Windows 11/10/7/earlier, macOS, Linux, and BeOS
Best for: Copy several home DVDs to computer with free media player
VLC is a versatile media player that can play a wide range of videos and DVDs. In fact, it features a less-known function to rip video from DVD to computer hard drive as well. It helps download DVD to computer on Windows 11/10, Mac, and Linux in various formats, such as MP4, OGG, WebM, ASF, and TS. There are also some options to adjust the video and audio settings, add subtitles, and more. VLC is free and open source, and many users may already have it on their computer. So they don't need to install or pay for other software to transfer DVD videos to a computer.
VLC may not be the best software to transfer DVD videos to computers as it can't produce very high output quality or fast DVD ripping speed. However, if you're comfortable with the software and need to rip DVDs occasionally or for personal use, VLC can be a good option. If you need to save DVD collection to a computer or require high-quality output, specialized DVD ripping software may be a better choice.
How to Copy DVDs to Computer Free with VLC?
Step 1. Download VLC if you don't have it on your computer. Then open VLC and insert the source DVD into your computer's optical drive. Note that you can't use VLC to copy a protected DVD to your computer. For more detailed steps, click and check how to rip DVDs using VLC >>
Step 2. Open VLC media player and click on "Media" in the menu bar. Select "Convert / Save" from the dropdown menu.
Step 3. In the "Open Media" dialog box, click on the "Disc" tab. Choose "DVD" as the disc type and in the Disc device section, click Browse and select your DVD drive. Here are some settings you need to adjust: enable the No disc menus option to let VLC skip the DVD menus. Or it may get stuck in a loop ripping the beginning of the Disc. You can also choose a specific title or chapter, or a specific audio/subtitle track that you'd like to download to your computer.
Step 4. Then click on "Convert / Save" button at the bottom to enter the Convert window. In the "Convert" dialog box, select the output format you want to save the DVD in. For example, you can download DVDs to a computer Windows 11/10/macOS in H.264, H.265, WMV, Vorbis, etc. If the format you want is not listed here, click the Edit button next to the selected profile to get more formats.
Then choose a destination on your computer for the copied DVD video. After that, click on "Start" to begin transferring the DVD. However, copying DVDs to computer using VLC will take quite a long time as VLC doesn't rip the DVD content, instead, it will record the DVD videos to your detination in the format you choose.
#4. How to Transfer DVDs to Computer Windows/Mac with MakeMKV
Platform: Windows 11/10/7/earlier, macOS, and Linux
Best for: Save protected DVDs on computers without quality loss
MakeMKV is a popular free program to copy DVD to computers on Windows and Mac. It's dedicated in ripping DVDs to computers in MKV format, without all the DVD content remaining untouched. The advantages and disadvantages using MakeMKV to download DVDs to computers are obvious. It supports protected DVDs and Blu-ray discs with different encryption measures. And can create digital copies of DVDs on your computer with the original quality and very fast speed. That makes MakeMKV one of the best free software to save DVD collections on a computer for safe backup.
On the other hand, the DVD video files created by MakeMKV can be large, taking up a significant amount of storage space on your computer. If you transfer DVD to digital format MKV on computer, make sure you have enough free space on your computer's hard drive.
How to Copy DVDs to Computer Free with MakeMKV?
Step 1. Using MakeMKV to download DVD videos to computers on Windows 11/10/Mac is extremely easy. Download MakeMKV on your desktop/laptop and insert the source DVD. Then open MakeMKV and click on the "File" menu, then choose "Open disc" to load the DVD.
Step 2. MakeMKV will start to scan the DVD and then display the basic information of the DVD such as the name, DVD type, copy protection, size, etc. Click on the big DVD drive button to load the detailed DVD titles.
Step 3. After all the DVD titles are loaded into MakeMKV, check the boxes next to the titles you want to copy to your computer, then choose a folder on your computer to save the copied DVD files.
After that, click on the "Make MKV" button to begin downloading DVD videos to your computer. The time it takes will depend on the size of the DVD and the speed of your computer. When the copying process is complete, you will have a folder on your computer containing the copied DVD movies in MKV format.
#5. How to Download DVDs to Mac with Disk Utility
Platform: macOS Ventura or earlier
Best for: Copy home DVDs to Mac with original quality
If you want to rip home DVD to computer MacBook Pro/Air/iMac, the Mac's built-in Disk Utility app offers an easy way. The Mac's built-in Disk Utility is a free and versatile tool included in Mac OS that can be used to create disk images, burn CDs and DVDs, and copy the contents of a DVD to your Mac in ISO images. So Mac users can use to create digital copies of DVDs on Mac computers without installing third-party apps.
It does not work to copy protected DVDs to Mac and only allows to transfer un-protected DVD to Mac in virtual image only. It's the top way to save home DVD disc to computer Mac.
How to Copy DVDs to Mac Computer Free with Disk Utility?
Step 1. Insert the DVD you want to copy into your Mac's DVD drive. Then go to Application > Utilities, find and open Disk Utility.
Step 2. In Disk Utility, select the DVD from the list on the left-hand side of the window. Then click on File from the Disk Utility menu, select New Image and then click on "Image from [Name of the DVD]".
Step 3. Select the format you want to use for the DVD copy (e.g. read-only, compressed, or DVD/CD master). Normally, we select DVD/CD master. Then choose a folder on your Mac computer for the DVD copied disk image and select a name for it. The ISO image will be as large as the DVD your Mac should have enough space to save the disk image.
Step 4. Click "Save" to start download the DVD content to Mac in a disk image.
#6. How to Upload DVDs to Computer Windows with DVD Shrink
Platform: Windows 10/8/7/XP
Best for: Save DVDs to Windows computers with small size
DVDShrink is a free program that can transfer DVDs to computer on Windows 10 with small file size. There are some sites offering the mirror version for Windows 11 or newer systems. DVDShrink is specially designed to shrink the DVD as small as possible. If will make a dual layer DVD disc (8.7GB) perfect fit the single layer DVD disc (4.7GB) by reducing the video quality and removing unnecessary parts. The resulting output is an ISO file or a DVD VIDEO TS folder.
The program features a DeCSS decryption algorithm to help copy some protected DVDs to PC computers. But as it has not been updated since 2005, it may not rip DVDs with newer DVD copy protection schemes.
How to Copy DVDs to PC Computer Free with DVD Shrink?
Step 1. Download and install DVD Shrink on your Windows 11/10/7 computer. Insert the DVD you want to copy into your computer's DVD drive.
Step 2. Open DVD Shrink and click on the "Open Disc" button on the top menu bar of the next window, DVD Shrink will now start analysis of the disc and then display the contents of the DVD.
Step 3. On the left of the screen are the DVD structure. You can choose which parts of the DVD you want to copy to your PC computer. Under the Compression Settings, you can choose among No Compression, Custom Ratio, Automatica, Still Image, and Still Pictures to adjust the compression ratios of different parts of the DVD-Video.
Step 4. Click on the "Backup" button and there are some settings to adjust. Choose the location on your Windows 11/10/7 computer to save the DVD files. Adjust the quality settings and other options if needed. Then click OK and it will start downloading the DVD videos to your computer.
FAQ about Copying DVDs to Computer
1. How do I copy a DVD to my computer using Windows Media Player?
You can't use Windows Media Player to copy files from DVD to PC computers on Windows 11/10/7. Windows Media Player can only copy songs from an audio CD to your PC.
2. How do I copy a DVD to my computer Windows 10?
If you want to copy a DVD as a digital file on your PC, simply select one of the above tools for it, such as MacX DVD Ripper Pro, Handbrake, VLC, MakeMKV, etc. You can also use the built-in Windows Disc Image Burner tool to copy an un-protected DVD to PC in ISO:
- Insert the DVD into your computer's DVD drive. Open File Explorer and navigate to the DVD drive.
- Right-click on the DVD drive and select "Create a disc image."
- In the "Disc Image Burner" window, choose a location on your PC computer to save the DVD image file, select the file format you want (usually ISO), and click "Save."
- It will take a few minutes to create the ISO image file. Then you will get a digital copy of the DVD on your computer.
3. Can you save a DVD as a file on your computer?
Yes, you can save a DVD as a file on your computer using specialized software that can rip the contents of the DVD to a digital file format. Whether you're running on Windows or macOS, this post have listed ways to download the video files from a DVD to your computer.
4. How do I copy a DVD to my laptop without a CD drive?
If your laptop doesn't have a CD/DVD drive, you can still copy the contents of a DVD to your laptop by using an external USB DVD drive or by creating an image file of the DVD on another computer that has a DVD drive and then transferring that file to your laptop.
5. Is it legal to rip a DVD I own to computer?
The legality of ripping a DVD you own to a computer depends on the laws of your country. In some countries, it may be legal to make a backup copy of a DVD for personal use, while in others it may be considered copyright infringement.
In the United States, for example, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) makes it illegal to bypass digital rights management (DRM) technologies used to protect DVDs, even if you own the physical disc. However, it's widely considered as legal to rip a DVD that a user legally purchased.
Notice: The DVD ripper developer only encourages you to use this DVD ripper Mac version to rip and convert DVDs for legal personal use, instead of illegal reproduction or distribution of copyrighted content. Please obey your local DVD copyright law before doing it. DO NOT do harm to others' lawful rights and interests.