How to Rip Copy-Protected DVD on Mac 2021 (Big Sur Included)?

Rosa Reyes
time October 21, 2021 Preview 27.9K
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Some of my friends are keen on DVD collections, especially those popular DVD movies and classic music videos. They prefer to play DVD videos on portable devices, like iPhone, iPad, smartphone, etc. so that they can enjoy themselves on the trip. It’s a good solution to rip and copy these DVD discs to Mac or other digital players. However, there are some problems they met while ripping, say, the quality is not as good as the original DVD movies, or unable to edit videos as they like.

So, I start this article to share my experience and advice about DVD ripper for Mac. You’ll get some useful information on why it is hard to rip, and how to rip copy protected DVD on Mac.

Why So Hard to Rip DVD on Mac?

To prevent commercial DVDs from being used for illegal purposes, DVD producers work through a way to protect them.

DRM (Digital rights management) is such a systematic technology to protect copyrights for digital media including DVDs.

The most efficient and trustful DRM approaches are called CSS (Content Scramble system) and RCE (Regional Coding Enhancement). They stop DVD owners from backing up and sharing copyrighted DVDs on their Mac. As a result, you failed to rip and copy DVDs with some software or the output quality is hard to drive with a 1:1 ratio.

So if you want to rip protected DVD on Mac with a 1:1 ratio, read the content below to obtain the professional DVD ripper or the welcomed open resources.


How to Rip a DVD on Mac Most Efficiently?

Cisdem Video Converter is an all-in-one and pretty stable DVD ripper to copy protected DVD on Mac. It has the ability to rip any video and audio files on a DVD to the hard disk, USB, Plex, iTunes, HDTV, Apple device, Apple software, mobile Phone, and various kinds of devices/players. Cisdem Video Converter allows you to remove all copying restrictions, be it protected by CSS, Region Code, Disney X-Project DRM, Sony ARccOS, UOP, RCE, RipGuard, or others.

It also helps you extract audio from video, edit media files, download videos from portals, and more. The software is lightweight, and compatible with Mac OS X 10.10 or later, such as recently released Big Sur, Catalina, Mojave, High Sierra, etc.

Step 1. Launch Cisdem Video Converter free trial version

Insert a copy-protected DVD disc into your Mac.

Download and open the Cisdem DVD ripper, then stay at ripping interface.

cisdem interface

Step 2. Load DVD source

After you insert a DVD disc, drag and drop its DVD folder into the software.

drag copyrighted dvd to cisdem

Alternatively, go to the top menu bar, click on "File" > "Add DVD", and load the encrypted DVD.

add dvd from menu bar

Step 3. Select titles and languages

On the interface, there is a "✓" checkbox in the upper right corner of each title. If you only wish to export the main title, cancel the other "✓".

In addition, a copy-protected DVD may offer subtitles and soundtracks in various languages. Cisdem DVD ripper can detect all of them. Just pick the language as you like.

pick titles and audio & subtitle languages

Step 4. Choose the output format

Click the format icon to open the output file panel, which involves loads of format options.

All formats are well categorized by the terminal devices. Choose whatever you want.

choose output format

Step 5. Rip copy protected DVD on Mac

After you've done all that, you can start to rip your encrypted DVD video. Click conversion icon on the bottom right corner.

Tip: Edit your DVD movie

If you don’t have a demand to edit the video, just skip to Step 4. If you want to beautify the DVD video for a better custom look, you can use its built-in editor.

Drag the ripped files to the “Convert” interface. Click the pencil-shaped icon to call up a window where you can fine-tune your video with crop, trim, special visual effects, watermarks, subtitles, and so on.

edit dvd videos



How to Rip Protected DVD on Mac for Free?

What's the free way to help you watch DVD on tablet, smartphone, and more portable media players? Here's how to copy a protected DVD on a Mac for free, so you can play the movies on your favorite gadgets.

HandBrake is an open-source video transcoder that aims to rip a DVD or convert a file. You can easily obtain the app from This page provides download links for all versions, Intel 64 bit for Mac and Apple Silicon Mac included. Since Apple has dropped support for 32-bit Mac applications with their release of macOS Catalina 10.15, you can see that there is no Handbrake 32 bit on the page.

In fact, it’s unable to copy protected DVDs natively. You have to get an outside DVD decrypter plug-in to circumvent the publisher’s digital rights management technology. For Windows users, you can download DVD43 PLUG-IN (DVD43.DLL). For Mac Yosemite or earlier users, install the libdvdcss package file. But if you are using El Capitan or higher, you should first download Homebrew - a Terminal command that will enable you to install libdvdcss.


  1. Freeware
  2. Available for conversion and ripping.
  3. Support adding chapters and subtitles to your video
  4. Compatible with Windows, Mac, and Linux


  1. Unattractive interface: it designed with many technical-looking input areas for you to add files and specify output preferences, such complex.
  2. Not many output formats: only MKV, MP4, and WebM supported
  3. The conversion speed is pretty slow. You should have more patience while using it.
  4. Not friendly for beginners to rip encrypted DVD on Mac OS X El Capitan or newer
  5. Only unprotect certain DVDs encrypted by CSS or Region Code, not all

1. Download and install HandBrake on Mac.

Note: Before ripping protected DVD, download libdvdcss to help bypass the built-in disc restrictions.

2. Insert the DVD you want to rip.

3. Click the “Source” button and select the DVD from the drop-down menu, it would scan the disc for titles to copy.

4. Click the “Title” drop-down menu to choose the section to copy.

Note: When in doubt, rip the longest title--that's most likely the actual movie, not the trailers or special features.

5. Look at the preset menu on the right side, you can preset outputs for a slew of Apple devices or straightly select MKV, MP4, or WebM as the output format.

6. Fine-tune your project under the “Video” tab.

7. Choose languages from the “Audio” and “Subtitles” tabs.

8. Hit on “Start” at the top of the interface.

remove copy protection from dvd mac handbrake



We have shared two apps to rip copy protected DVD on Mac. Cisdem Video Converter is the handiest and the easiest one to operate. It’s able to decrypt any DRMed content (regardless of releasing by Walt Disney, Sony Pictures, Warner Bros., MGM, etc., or others), and supports a wide range of digitalized output formats. Whereas Handbrake itself can't rip protected DVD on Mac, you need to install extra add-ons. Even if you have libdvdcss package installed, it merely removes copy protections of partial DVDs.

You can look for alternatives as well. But I suggest you use a dedicated and paid DVD ripper. Some freeware like RipIt, MakeMKV, and MacTheRipper can't actually unlock various types of DRM protection.

Rosa Reyes
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Rosa has worked in Mac software industry for more than eight years. She believes that the purpose of software is to make life better and work more productively. In addition to writing, Rosa is also an avid runner.

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