DVD-R Incompatibilities forever? at DVinfo.net

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Old June 5th, 2006, 07:49 AM   #1
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DVD-R Incompatibilities forever?

CRITICAL ISSUES:

1. Is there a workflow method which creates DVD-R videodiscs that play correctly across the spectrum of 2nd gen to current DVD-/+ RW formats, in addition to PC formats running Apple OS, Win2K, and WinXP?

2. Does the DVD-R videodisc producer need to create multiple fininshed consumer product formats to accommodate at least two classes of system playback:

a. PRE XP: Win2k and pre DVD+R formats

b. POST XP: WinXP and DVD+/-R formats

DVD-R compatibility issues revisited:
A report & study inspired by the introduction of standalone DVD +/- RW DL recorders

A. Observational Experience with Microsoft Operating Systems DVD videodisc playback:

1. Win2k based Windows Media Player software does not support DVD video disc playback or recording.

2. WinXP Windows Media Player adds support for Record & Playback to DVD-/+ R discs, and will supports DVD video playback.


B. Late Model standalone DVD recorders -

2005+ consumer set top DVD video -R, +R, -RW, +RW player/recorders introduce new incompatibilities with DVD-R videodisc playback systems.

Test Machine:

2006 manufactured LiteON LVC9016G set top DVD & VHS combo recorder produces DVD-R's using its internally supplied real time MPEG2 & DD2.0 encoders.

These DVD-R discs are created with directory folders containing:

1. Video_TS Folder containing the traditional .VOB, .BUP, and .IFO files.

2. A new Video_RM folder with .IFO, .BUP, and .DAT files

3. The traditional Audio_TS folder does not exist.

A. A Major problem with DVD video discs created in this standard:

DVD-R discs created with this standard are NOT recognized, fail to initialize, and will not play on 2nd gen DVD set top Players such as the 1999 Pioneer DV-525, once recognized as a compatibility standard setting test machine of its time.

An Experimental Work around:

1. Transfer only the Video_TS folder to a DVD-R disc.

2. Do not transfer the Video_RM folder on the disc.


B. Compatibility test results of the modified DVD-R videodiscs created without the Video_RM folder:

1. The disc can now be recognized and played correctly by the 2nd generation machine set top DVD players with DVD & DVD-R playback capabilities.

2. This disc will also play correctly PC based systems configured with Win2k, including:
a. Win2k Ahead Nero Showtime
b. Win2k Cyberlink PowerDVD
c. Win2k Intervideo WinDVD

3. BIG TROUBLE WinXP DVD-R video disc playback:

A DVD-R videodisc missing the Video_RM folder will have playback problems Windows XP PC based systems including:

Windows Media Player

WinXP Intervideo WinDVD

Playback problems include:

a. The DVD-R videodiscs missing the Video_RM folder initialize slowly or corrupted

b. The DVD-R videodiscs missing the Video_RM folder prematurely stop playback - after Chapter 12.

c. Region code recognition trouble, and or playback format problems selecting between thumbnail or full screen images have also been described to me by customers.

What then is the real purpose of the Video_RM folder and its contents?
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Old June 5th, 2006, 07:56 AM   #2
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Why don't you use bit setting? Then all your DVDs will appear as DVD-ROMs (i.e., pressed DVDs).
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Old June 5th, 2006, 11:32 AM   #3
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Simple Solutions are best

Thank you Emre.

A simple solution like "bit setting" is an excitement!

Forgive my ingnorance, but could you elaborate on how you do this.

Tx ggd
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Old June 5th, 2006, 12:02 PM   #4
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It's easy, really. First, you make sure your DVD burner supports bit setting. I bought my BenQ specifically for this ability. Next, enable bit setting in your DVD burning software or with an OEM utility. After that you should be good to go! Read more here.
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Old June 5th, 2006, 01:58 PM   #5
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for best compatibility with dvd-r's, i believe that you need an audio_ts and a video_ts folder on the disc... the former will typically be empty.

i don't have the slightest idea what the Video_RM folder is, but i can tell you from the experiences of my neighbor that liteon makes lousy standalone dvd recorders... return that turkey, and ask for a refund.

as i understand it, no version of the windows media player comes with full mpeg2/dvd playback capability, because of the licensing costs... same thing with quicktime, so whatever problems you are having there could be related to dvd software player issues.

region coding is not part of the dvd-r format, so it should not be an issue with any player... i send hundreds of dvd-r's to england every year, no problems with region coding.
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Old June 6th, 2006, 08:51 AM   #6
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Update: WinXP DVD-R playback incompatibility

Windows XP Complicates DVD-R playback compatibility.

A 2005 vintage LiteOn DVD+/-RW standalone recorder will produce DVD-R discs containing an additional “VIDEO_RM” folder. The contents are two small 32kB .IFO & .BUP files, and a 1MB .DAT file. The classic “AUDIO_TS” folder is not present. The actual purpose of the “VIDEO_RM” folder – ? My personal opinion at the end of report.

These discs play on at least 3 different apps running Win2k. These discs also play on multiple apps running WinXP. I am OUTRAGED because these discs are not even recognized on older vintage standalone DVD set top players (1999 Pioneer DV-525 for example).

My first attempt to preserve backward compatibility was the obvious deletion of the “VIDEO_RM” folder, and the addition of an empty “AUDIO_TS” folder. DVD-R discs created in this manner play correctly on vintage DVD playback machines, OK on all tested forms of Win2k PC playback, but have serious problems with WinXP PC playback.

A very helpful dvinfo.net forum contributor advised implementing “bit setting”. The trail of research led to a freeware authoring tool available at www.videohelp.com/tools/ called FIXVTS. EXE. The primary application of FIXVTS is to correctly reconstruct the navigation pointers in .VOB menu files ripped from DVD-ROM and improve playback compatibility for DVD+R discs on stand alone set top machines. User feedback posted at the site about the tool call it “a genius piece of software”.

The FIXVTS tool claims that it rewrites the .IFO files. Perhaps it also forces a media descriptor flag that will identify the disc as a DVD-ROM, but does not make this claim specifically.

The FIXVTS modified DVD-R discs containing only the “VIDEO_TS” folder play on all Win2k PC playback setups, and on vintage DVD players. These discs will now play on 3 out of 4 tested WinXP playback systems.

Problem XP machine: A WinXPSP1 with Cyberlink PowerDVD 4.0 initializes, plays back, but allows program video to play out for a second, and then blanks the video feed with a green screen!

The other XP machines now work: A WinXPSP2 with Cyberlink PowerDVD 4.0 plays the disc. The audio continues to play. WinXPSP1 WMP 8.0 & WinXPSP2 WMP 9.0 play the DVD-R with FIXVTS processing.

Is 3 out of 4 good enought?

The presence or lack of the empty “AUDIO_TS” folder on DVD-R’s seems to be irrelevant to playback compatibilities across the range of playback devices.

Roxio Media Creator 7.0 prohibits burning both “VIDEO_TS” and “VIDEO_RM” folders to DVD-R. The “VIDEO_RM” folder is not written.

Opinion from direct experience: The “VIDEO_RM” folder seems to be a conspiratorial “Rights Management” layer, designed to prevent commercial Hollywood product from being replicated on set top DVD recorders. Trampling the rights and efforts of independent producers to create legitimate new product – just collateral damage. This is a devil’s triangle in a temporary truce between Hollywood political muscle, Seattle Microsoft XP OS monopoly, and east Asian hardware manufacturing interests.

Stay tuned, after I reconfigure hardware & software to burn both FIXVTS version “VIDEO_TS” & “VIDEO_RM” folders to a DVD-R.
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Old June 6th, 2006, 01:32 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregory Davis
The FIXVTS modified DVD-R discs.
as you just posted, that bitsetting is only for the dvd+r format, so i can't understand why you'd attempt to use it for the dvd-r format.

claiming that it somehow fixes a compatibility issue with dvd-r is not correct, and it might lead other people out here to attempt the same thing... the last time i looked, the dvd-r format can not take advantage of that aspect of bitsetting.
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Old June 6th, 2006, 06:02 PM   #8
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I agree on the bit-setting. Evidently it's to address the compatibility issues of the non-standard DVD+R format, which should, for all our sakes, just be allowed to die.
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Old June 7th, 2006, 12:25 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug Boze
I agree on the bit-setting. Evidently it's to address the compatibility issues of the non-standard DVD+R format, which should, for all our sakes, just be allowed to die.
In the real-world the difference in compatibility between DVD-R and DVD+R is minimal. To quote the DVD FAQ:

"Very roughly, DVD-R and DVD+R discs work in about 85% of existing drives and players, while DVD-RW and DVD+RW discs work in around 80%. The situation is steadily improving. In another few years compatibility problems will mostly be behind us, just as with CD-R (did you know that early CD-Rs had all kinds of compatibility problems?)."

I believe those numbers may be out of date (I think the compatibility percentage is higher for both formats now, but couldn't find the numbers I think I've seen previously). In any case, a mere 5% difference is pretty small, if not non-existent once the margin of error is factored in. Personally, I wouldn't advise losing any sleep over it.

And the BitSetting (also called BookType) is a standard flag on the lead in of the DVD that identifies what format the DVD conforms to. The purpose of changing the BitSetting to DVD-ROM is to avoid problems with a few older players that balk if a DVD is not flagged as a DVD-ROM. In other words, it sounds as if the compatibility problem could just as well happen with DVD-R media. See the VideoHelp.com Glossary for more information.
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Last edited by Christopher Lefchik; June 7th, 2006 at 09:45 AM.
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Old June 7th, 2006, 08:18 AM   #10
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test results create new theories

Thank you Mr. Lefchik thank you for pointing this thread in a practical direction.

Thank you Mr. Euritt for offering cogent advice; throw away the LiteOn. Cosidering costs of my time and disturbed customers, he is correct.

Stating the facts again: Using the very same "VIDEO_TS" folder data set:

Pre FIXVTS fails 100% on XP platforms, and

Post FIXVTS worked on 75% of tested XP platforms.

I can make no claims as to why or how this comes to be.

I am hours away from hardware reconfigurations to permit burning both a FIXVTS type "VIDEO_TS" and "VIDEO_RM" folders to a DVD-R....

The goal is to re-establish 99%+ compatibility with late model + legacy standalone set top players, and the WinXP platform PC's.
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Old June 7th, 2006, 09:53 AM   #11
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And thank you for taking the time to do these tests and post the results. Please do let us know how things turn out.
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Old June 7th, 2006, 04:41 PM   #12
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LiteOn Created DVD-R data compatibility - Final tests

LiteOn Created DVD-R data compatibility Final tests

The remaining qualifier tests remaining with regards to LiteOn generated “VIDEO_TS” & “VIDEO_RM” folders, after having run the FIXVTS utility; What happens when both Folders are burned to DVD-R?

Results

1. Legacy DVD-ROM set top stand alone – OK
2. Recent vintage set top DVD+/-RW recorder – OK
3. Win2kSP4 Cyberlink PowerDVD – OK
4. Win2kSP4 – Intervideo WinDVD – OK
5. Win2kSP4- Nero Showtime – OK
6. WinXPSP1 – WMP 8.0 – Trouble with initialization & dodgy playback. (OK in previous test without VIDEO_RM folder)
7. WinXPSP1 – Cyberlink Power DVD 4.0 – Will not initialize.
8. WinXP SP2 WMP 9.0 – Loads slowly; recognizes the data set as Two titles with identical chapters, even though only one title is present. Navigation & Playback is OK from either Title/Chapter list.
9. WinXP SP2 Cyberlink PowerDVD – OK

Observed Test result summary:

1. The presence of the VIDEO_RM folder functions like a directory intercept "Rights Management" control system for WinXP playback. It also makes the DVD incompatible with legacy DVD-Rom standalone set top players.

2. LiteOn Authored DVD-R discs will not play on WinXP systems if the “”VIDEO_RM” folder is missing from the disc. All other test conditions OK.

3. The FIXVTS.EXE utility seems to function by correcting the .IFO & .BUP files in the “VIDEO_TS” folder, effectively eliminating the intercept redirect authorization control set up in the “VIDEO_RM” folder.

4. The DVD-R with a FIXVTS modified “VIDEO_TS” folder only, plays on all tests above, except WinXP SP1 with Cyberlink PowerDVD.

5. New WorkFlow process: One Pass Master to LiteON DVD-R during dv Master tape transfer to editor. Use the FIXVTS utility on the Direct master DVD-R “VIDEO_TS” folder data. The “VIDEO_RM” folder can be discarded. The DVD-R disc copies will play on XPSP2 WMP9, all WIN2k, legacy DVD-rom set tops, and recent vintage DVD+/-RW set tops. (Clients have quit asking for VHS dubs of the camera masters, and now request DVD dubs instead).
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Old June 7th, 2006, 10:07 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Christopher Lefchik
In the real-world the difference in compatibility between DVD-R and DVD+R is minimal.
it's not a question of format compatibility comparisons, because as doug indicated, that train left the station long ago... dvd-r is the dominant format.

rather, it's a question of whether or not you can use bitsetting on a dvd-r, which gregory isn't quite sure that he's actually doing with the fixvts software:

"Although you will understand that it’s not possible to change the booktype field for DVD-R discs there still excists a DVD-R bitsetting. Some claim that this increases the compatibility but this has not been independently confirmed by anyone and as it’s technically impossible to change the booktype field it will still be possible for the hardware to find out that a disc is a DVD-R. The booktype setting for DVD-R discs seems to be based on a workaround that has not been proven to be working.

According to Michael Spath who studies both the +R and -R format and is known as an expert on technical DVD recording issues; "the trick is based on the fact that some drives read the booktype from the last border-in and not from the lead-in. Therefore if you create a second session on the disc you will create after the first session a new border-in, where you should normally copy the informations from the lead-in (including
the book type). With this trick, you instead write a DVD-ROM booktype in this second session, which violates the - standard. Also drives which read the booktype from the lead-in will not be fooled by this method (eg. some Pioneer drives".

http://www.cdfreaks.com/article/150
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Old June 8th, 2006, 05:00 AM   #14
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VIDEO_RM? That was not part of the original spec that I remember (it does not show up at the Demystified FAQ either.) So, the Lite-On is creating a non-standard disc. It may not be XP, but the reader in the computer that is not handling it also. Dash R or Plus R are just a red herring. It looks like the file format is the problem.

Remaster the disc using your tools on a computer (without RM). If you wish to use booktype of DVD-ROM, get a NEC 35xx and Liggy's at CDFreaks BIOS flash. I create all of my writable disc on TY 8X +R media with the booktype set.

I am kind of confused why you would master it on a stand-alone in the first place.
Edit- had a thought. Are you going Firewire to the recorder live?

Last edited by George Ellis; June 8th, 2006 at 11:00 AM.
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Old June 12th, 2006, 02:58 PM   #15
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Ive been going very deep into this for the past week and i have found some very interesting stuff. DVD+R/RW is a very rough format created by sony. DVD-R is the standard and is supported by the DVD-Forum. DVD-R are the next best thing From DVD-RA discs which are used for pro authoring. at the end of the day its all to do with the discs you get.
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