Thursday, March 29, 2007

Is it Okay to Rip a DVD to Your Hard drive?

One issue for people with Media Center - type PC's has always been the legality of ripping your own DVD's to your PC hard drive. I personally think it should be okay for you to rip (or backup) your DVD from the disc itself to your PC. This gives you more flexibility in how you watch the movie - especially if you use an HTPC front-end.

You may have heard of a company selling the Kaleidescape system. This system was basically a high-end HTPC preloaded with a bunch of movies. You purchase the movies as part of the package, but they are on the hard-drive of the system. Sounds like an okay thing right? Well the DVD CCA, which licenses the Content Scramble System (CSS) for protecting DVDs didn't think so. they claimed that this Kaleidescape system was a breach of contract by creating a system that allowed or enabled people to copy protected DVDs onto hard-drive servers.

From the article:

As Kaleidescape CEO Michael Malcolm explains, "The DVD CCA went on a fishing
expedition for three years, trying to find a breach." In the end, he says, Judge
Nichols agreed that "nothing in the agreement prevents you from making copies of
DVDs. Nothing requires that a DVD be present during playback."

This ruling avoided the actual legality of ripping copy protected DVD's, but it certainly a step in the right direction. Click here to read the full article