How to Unlock a Movie to Burn

by Sandra Parker

Creating copies of your family's home movies can be tough, especially if the DVD has been encrypted or "locked." In fact, the software that comes available on most computers these days can't unlock an encrypted DVD, leaving you without many options. But copying non-commercial DVDs that have been encrypted or "locked" can be accomplished by using a simple decrypting software that can be downloaded, either free or for a cost, from the Internet.


Download a DVD decrypting software. There are many options available on the Internet. Some of these are free while others come at a cost. One of the easiest decrypting software products to use is DVD Decrypter (see Resources).


Launch the application. After downloading and installing DVD Decrypter, launch the application by double-clicking on the desktop icon.


Insert the DVD you wish to decrypt into your DVD drive and define the source file. Simply click the drop-down box under source and choose your DVD/CD ROM drive. When the application has completed reading the disc and determined what encryptions are present, the DVD icon at the bottom of the screen will light up.


Determine the location of the output file. When you rip a DVD, the resulting ISO file will be saved on your computer. You need to define where the output file will reside so that you can locate it in the future. To do this, click on the folder icon located under the Destination section and browse your local folders until you locate the folder you wish to use.


Start the decryption process. After you have defined the source and destination locations, simply click on the DVD icon at the bottom of the screen to start the ripping/decrypting process. This process will generally take 10-to-20 minutes, depending on the size of the file and the speed of your processor. The resulting ISO file will be a completely unencrypted file that can be compressed and burned to a blank DVD for viewing in standard DVD players or other video viewing devices.


  • close Many consumer rights advocates have interpreted the laws surrounding "fair use" rights to mean that individuals can make backup copies of copyrighted works they have purchased. But, the actual laws surrounding this type of action are very vague. In fact, it offers very little for consideration for determining fair or legal use such as copying. You can peruse the text yourself on the U.S. Copyright Office Web site:

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