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MacTheRipper is a Mac OS X application that enables users to create a playable copy of the contents of a Video DVD by defeating the Content Scramble System. During this process it may optionally modify or disable the DVD region code or the User operation prohibition features of the copied data. The previous lack of an OS X equivalent to the PC software DVDShrink gave this standalone DVD ripper widespread popularity among Macintosh users.[citation needed]

The current public release is version 2.6.6. The next release, version 3, has been in testing by a closed group since April 30th 2006.[1] Users can join the test group by making a donation to the project.[citation needed]

MacTheRipper was developed in 2002 and since that time, it has had over two million users.[citation needed]


Legal issues

The closed-source policy of MacTheRipper's authors may violate the GPL license of the libdvdread and Libdvdcss software libraries, which MacTheRipper is built on.[2][3]

The creation and distribution of MacTheRipper may violate the Anti-circumvention laws which the U.S. and EU have adopted as part of the WIPO Copyright Treaty, in spite of the fact that the software is designed for making fair use backups. In a case against the maker of a program similar to MacTheRipper, the court found that "the downstream uses of the software [...], whether legal or illegal, are not relevant to determining whether [the manufacturer] itself is violating the statute."[4] In that case and others that followed it, the court found the software manufacturer in violation of the DMCA.[5]


  1. MacTheRipper Official Site ( See Project News entry for Apr 30, 2006
  2. libdvdcss-devel mailing list A user notes the use of libdvdcss in a closed-source project.
  3. Jon Lech Johansen's Blog DeCSS author notes GPL code used in MacTheRipper, MacTheRipper author responds
  4. 321 Studios v. MGM Order Court Decision in case against 321 Studios, the makers of PC software similar to MacTheRipper
  5. 321 Studios Shuts Its Doors Wired News article about the entertainment industry lawsuits that forced 321 Studios to shutdown

See also

External links

Personal tools

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