How to Burn DVDs to Hard Drives

By Andrew Smith

Burning your favorite DVDs to your hard drive can be an excellent way to back up your favorite movies, concerts and other files found on DVDs. Doing so also allows you to watch these video files from a computer without the need of the actual DVD. While burning a DVD to a hard drive is a somewhat more involved process than ripping a CD, it is no more difficult.

Step 1

Begin by acquiring a DVD ripper software program. There are several programs that you can download and many will allow you to use a trial version for free.

Step 2

Insert the DVD you want to burn to your hard drive into the DVD-ROM.

Step 3

Open the DVD using the ripper software program. If a dialog box appears when you insert the DVD into your computer, click the name of the ripper software program in that box. Otherwise, you can open the DVD by clicking "File" and then "Open."

Step 4

Change the Input Settings. To do this, you will need to locate the Input Settings box or section for the program you are using. If the box doesn't automatically appear, you can click "Tools" or "Help" in order to locate the dialog box. Once you do, you will be able to change things such as volume and color and even add a watermark to the file.

Step 5

Change the Output Settings. Again, you will need to locate the appropriate dialog box found either in the toolbar or the "Tools" section. Once you find the right box for the program you are using, you will be able to set the format for the file (AVI, MPG), screen size and other settings.

Step 6

Click the "Record" or "Start" tab or button and the DVD will begin ripping to your hard drive. Depending on your computer and the length of the DVD, it could take some time until the process is complete.

Tips & Warnings

  • You can choose to leave the Input and Output settings to the "Default" settings if you are new to ripping DVDs. Most programs will automatically detect the best settings based upon your DVD.