/me hates my DVD drive

I’ve finally given up on my DVD drive.  For a long time, VLC has been the only thing that would countenance even trying to play DVDs on it, and even that occasionally claimed that there was an audio CD in the drive until it was removed and put in again.

Now, after upgrading libdvdcss and unplugging a harddrive from the IDE channel my DVD drive is on, trying to play dvds gets me:

export DVDCSS_VERBOSE=2 && vlc /dev/dvd

libdvdnav: Using dvdnav version 0.1.10 from http://dvd.sf.net
libdvdread: Using libdvdcss version 1.2.9 for DVD access
libdvdcss debug: opening target `/dev/dvd'
libdvdcss debug: using libc for access
libdvdcss debug: disc is scrambled
libdvdcss debug: requesting AGID
libdvdcss error: drive would not authenticate
libdvdread: Could not open /dev/dvd with libdvdcss.
libdvdread: Can't open /dev/dvd for reading
libdvdnav: vm: faild to open/read the DVD

Epic fail.  Other people have had this problem with AOpen drives, so I think it’s high time I got a new DVD rewriter.  Preferably one that can write double-layer DVDs (which mine currently can’t).

The main reason I’m posting this is because, after I googled for problems with DVD playback, I discovered that almost no-one knows about the DVDCSS_VERBOSE environment variable.  There’s a corresponding one (DVDREAD_VERBOSE) for libdvdread, although I couldn’t get that to do anything.  I only found out about these debug variables by looking through the source code trying to debug the problem (after libdvdread claimed it couldn’t open /dev/dvd, but dd if=/dev/dvd of=/dev/null count=200 had no problems).

Oh, and strace is really cool.  That was one of my debug steps, and one I’d never have thought of until I saw someone’s blog about it a few weeks ago.

Maybe I’ll finally be able to use Dragon player (which has a cool icon) when I get my new drive.

[edit] At Spanner‘s suggestion, I fixed it by setting the region with regionset.  Now Dragon Player works too! [/edit]

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7 Responses to “/me hates my DVD drive”

  1. Diederik van der Boor Says:

    If you don’t like this drive anymore, perhaps the libdvdcss guys do, to improve their software? Just a thought.

    But if you’re serious, why not contacting them? ;-)

  2. Smarter Says:

    The libdvdcss env variables are documented in the mplayer manpage(probably not the best place, but better than nothing :P)

  3. Spanner Says:

    It sounds silly, but you have remembered to set a region for the DVD writer’s firmware using e.g. the ‘regionset’ utility haven’t you?

  4. Sebastián Benítez Says:

    Get an LG. They work fine.

  5. randomguy3 Says:

    @Diederik van der Boor: I don’t think it’s a libdvdcss issue. The problem is that the DVD_AUTH ioctl is failing. So it’s either the kernel or the drive.

    @Spanner: no, I haven’t. I’ll look into that.

    @Sebastián Benítez: I’ve had issues with LG drives before. Well, only that Nero never worked with them, but that doesn’t make me hopeful about their implementation of ATAPI.

  6. randomguy3 Says:

    @Spanner: thank you, that fixed it. I think I’ll still buy a new drive at some point, if only because my current one doesn’t write dual-layer DVDs, but there’s no longer any rush.

  7. Pierre Says:

    Somehow this sounds familiar!

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