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Old 23rd February 2021, 03:07   #1  |  Link
Cyber Akuma
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How to properly capture/extract video from a DVD-RAM disk?

I have pretty much no experience with DVD-RAM disks or devices. My father gave me an old DVD-RAM disk that he was hoping I could get the videos off of it and either convert them to a standard DVD or a video file.

I checked my optical drive's specs and it did say it supported DVD-RAM disks. When I got the disk it was a mini-disk in some plastic caddy and was two-sided. I took it out of the caddy and tried to read it on my PC.

I was able to view the contents of the disk, but I was not sure how to playback the data, or even if I was playing it back properly.

The disk had three folders on both sides:

DCIM - which other than some subfolders was empty (I assume the camera had some photo feature that was not used)

DVD_RTAV - which contained three files: "VR_MANGR.BUP" "" and "VR_MANGR.IFO" "VR_MOVIE.VRO"

RTR_EXTN - which contained two files "RX.DAT" and "VR_STDUM.000"

I have no idea what any of these files are for, the only one I was able to make any sense of was the VRO file, which since all the others were a few KB in size while that one was in gigs as well as it's obvious filename, was clearly the video file. (I assume the others are some sort of chapter/metadata but I was not able to figure out how to read them after googling about it).

Trying to playback the VRO in MPC:HC or VLC worked..... but only kinda. It claimed the file was only about 3-4 min in length, which makes no sense for compressed video.... and eventually I found out why, the timer just plain doesn't work in any player I used. If I try to skip ahead/rewind it just keeps calculating nonsense times, and keeps going long after the video should have been over.

So I really have no idea what to do.

First of all.... did I even get all the files off the disk right? I just simply copied the files off the disk that Windows could see, but as I said, I am unfamiliar with DVD-RAM disks. Are they designed with any sort of multiple layers or metadata or something of that nature that I would have missed from just simply trying to copy the files as if it was a standard data CD or DVD? And if so, what method should I use to actually read all the data off of it?

And if I did get the data off the disk properly, how do I properly view it? Much less extract/encode it? I couldn't figure out how to try to load the BUP/IFO files to get proper chapter data, or how to even playback the VRO file properly since it's timestamps and playback length were utterly broken. And I have zero idea what the RTR_EXTN folder is even for or if that is some camera-specific metadata that is useless for trying to convert the video.
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Old 24th February 2021, 20:20   #2  |  Link
AviSynth monkey
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Copying the files straight off the disc should be all right. DVD-RAM was intended as an erasable, recordable version of DVD-ROM, so there shouldn't be any copy protection.

Years ago, it was possible to open the DVD_RTAV in the (now obsolete) TMPGEnc DVD Author and make a DVD. I don't know if its successor, TMPGEnc Authoring Works has retained this functionality, but it's trialware, so you could have a go.

Alternatively, try renaming the VR_MOVIE.VRO to VR_MOVIE.MPG. Can you open the resulting file in DGIndex and demux/index it? Also, try running MediaInfo on the file to get some information about it.

Renaming the .VRO to .MPG is not absolutely ideal because the content might be fragmented, but the choices are likely to be limited. I don't have a DVD-RAM to test, so I don't know what software supports it these days. It's been ages since I've seen one.
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Old 24th February 2021, 21:58   #3  |  Link
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DGIndex will open VRO natively, list of extensions
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Old 25th February 2021, 00:41   #4  |  Link
AviSynth monkey
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Even better! I thought it might be able to do so but couldn't remember off the top of my head.
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