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nce upon a time, some people are ridiculous. The ridiculous people I’m referring to are the ones that “license” decoders for DVDs. Not only do you have to pay for DVDs, but you have to pay for the right to watch those DVDs. You may not know it, but you’ve already paid for this right. It came bundled in the price for your standalone DVD player, or in the price you paid for your Windows machine. Manufacturers pay for the right to include a DVD decoder in their products. To me this seems a bit wacky. Something like not being able to store food in your own refrigerator, unless you’ve paid a third-party a storage fee. But that’s the screwed up world we live in. Linux, being an open source product, cannot offer DVD playback right out of the box, because of the litigious licensors. However, there is a relatively easy way to get your Ubuntu 8.04.1 (Hardy Heron) installation playing DVDs (albeit without the DVD menus). Here’s how:

Open up a Terminal window and type 

sudo wget -O /etc/apt/sources.list.d/medibuntu.list

Then type

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install medibuntu-keyring && sudo apt-get update

Then type

sudo apt-get install libdvdcss2

Now reboot. Your default Media player “Movie Player” should be able to play the main DVD movie directly off the DVD.

One more note, if you are running Ubuntu inside Virtualbox as I do, you may also need to change a Virtualbox configuration (Settings/CDDVD-ROM, check “Enable Passthrough”). And they all lived happily ever after, (once DVDs became obsolete). ZZZZZZZZZZ



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