MacMost Now 135: Watching DVDs On Your Mac Without the DVD

Gary Rosenzweig looks at the software DVD Drive-In for Mac. This makes an image of a DVD on your MacBook's hard drive so you can watch the DVD while traveling without having to bring the DVD with you.
Video Transcript / Captions
Closed captioning for this video is available on YouTube: MacMost Now 135: Watching DVDs On Your Mac Without the DVD.

Ahoy there mateys and welcome to another episode of MacMost Now. In the past I've told you about ways to take movies from your DVD collection and store them on your laptop or iPod or iPhone so that you can watch them, say, on an airplane trip. Well, there's a new piece of software that does this in an even better way. It's called Drive-in. Drive-in is a cool piece of Mac software that you insert a DVD into your computer and you can go ahead and make a copy of that DVD on your hard drive that behaves pretty much as if you had that DVD in the drive. Not only that, but when you use Drive-in, you have the ability to import in all sorts of information about the DVD, so you not only have all the contents of the DVD, but you also have all the information that is on the box of the DVD. You can store it in a library of DVDs so you can take several with you and store them for later use. So the advantages of Drive-in are: 1) It takes the entire DVD, all the extra features, all the extra audio tracks, everything -- it's just like having the DVD in the drive, and the quality is the same as the DVD. 2) Another advantage is speed. It actually doesn't take very long. It only took about 15-20 minutes to copy a DVD to my drive. When you actually rip a DVD using something like HandBrake, it can take hours to do the same thing, and it's just not possible when you want to do it just before you leave for the airport. 3) The third advantage is it's kind of more legal. You see when you rip a DVD to a file, you're actually decrypting the encryption code on there, which is illegal according to the digital writing copyright act, if you care about that. But Drive-in is not decrypting anything, it's just making a straight copy of the DVD, and it's kind of keeping it safe so there's no piracy. So, if you're concerned about the legalities, Drive-in is a better option for you. Although whether it's a completely fail-safe legal option is for the lawyers and the courts to decide. Now the disadvantages of Drive-in are: 1) It's not free. 2) It can't be used to put movies on your iPod or iPhone. It only works on the drive of a Mac Book or Mac Book Pro. So if you travel al lot, particularly if you watch DVDs on your Mac Book when you travel, I think this software is a must-have. You can get it from It costs $39 for a single license.
Hey, if you happen to be going to Blog World Expo this weekend, say 'hi.' I'll be talking on a panel there and I'll be all over the place. Also remember to tell your friends about MacMost Now. I'm trying to boost the rankings of MacMost Now at iTunes, so I'd appreciate it if you can send into And happy talk like a pirate day to all you lily-livered bilge rats.

Comments: 3 Responses to “MacMost Now 135: Watching DVDs On Your Mac Without the DVD”

    11 years ago

    Great tip Gary!
    Would you recommend this program for a per-intel iMac desktop as well?
    I will buy it for my MacBook Pro if it’s faster then Handbreak.

    11 years ago

    Daniel: I think it is best for laptops, specifically for people who watch DVDs on them while traveling. If you have an iMac and your DVD is in the same location, then it isn’t as useful. Haven’t tested on a pre-Intel Mac, tho.

    11 years ago

    Thanks for the info!

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