Sunday, March 22, 2009

Calling All Computer Nerds! HELP ME PLEASE!!

I've been trying to figure out how to transfer all of my old home movies, from back in the VHS days to a form that I can use on my computer. I've got all of my video from when Lydia, Ross and Mark were little on one VHS, and it's dieing. I'm afraid that the next time I play it, it will die totally. I've got an analog to digital converter. That will transfer it to a form that my DVD player can play, but my computer can't really do anything with it. It turns them into two or three separate files, I think. There is a BUP file, a IFO, and a VOB file for each clip. I have an external hard drive that I'm wanting to save the video on, and then edit and burn disks / post things on here. What I think I need it a good program that can convert those BUP, IFO, and VOB files (one on them I think is just a menu, but I'm not sure) into a WMV, or an AVI or something that my computer can use. I could also go for a good program to capture from a DVD format, that could work. I tried a trial version of one program, I can't remember the name of it, but it stank royally! It took about 45 minutes to transfer 3 minutes of video, and then it doesn't work right anyway. You can't get the sound and the video to come out at the same time, and Windows Movie Maker couldn't play it right. ARGH! I'm wondering if my external hard drive is part of the slowness problem. How much memory do I need for that? The one I've got has 100 gig. Anyone have a clue? Do you know of some good software to help me, or just a better way all around? HELP ME PLEASE!!!

And for the rest of us, who know nothing about how to do this, here a clip from my good camera, that needs none of converting junk:

Check out his eyeballs!


Curtis Gibby said...

There's a program called VLC media player ( ) that can open and play the DVD formats you mentioned (as I recall, it's the .VOB file that actually contains the video information). That way you don't have to convert anything, just use the files you've already got! Good luck!

Brad Carter said...

I use a program called Magic DVD Ripper to rip all of my Netflix DVDs into MP4 files that I can watch on my computer or Xbox 360. It works perfectly and I've ripped probably 1,000 DVDs with it. Their website is

I'm not sure what the limitations of the trial version are. But $35 isn't too terrible of a price. I didn't pay for mine, though. I got it from bittorrent for free. I'm such a criminal.

If you'd like, I'll rip a few of your home movie DVDs into AVI files for you, Renae. You can just mail them to me and I'll mail you back AVI discs. It'd be really simple for me to do, so it's no trouble at all.

Also, be careful when trusting recordable DVDs to archive your family videos on! They don't last forever. They can start to deteriorate after just a year or two. Over the past 10 years I've had plenty of my own recordable discs stop working for no reason at all. Studies have put their shelf life at 5 - 10 years. But it'd sure suck to lose all your home videos.

I've kept all of my original VHS tapes of home movies since VHS will last decades. And I keep all my home videos backed up to several hard drives. I'm paranoid about losing pictures and videos! I've had friends that have lost their digital picture collections and it's not a pretty sight.

Renae said...

Thanks for the advice Brad & Curtis! I REALLY appreciate it!

LID said...