Play encrypted DVDs on Ubuntu

This is fool proof How-To for playing protected DVD’s under Ubuntu, thanks to Medibuntu repository your Ubuntu Linux system can play the popular media formats. Support for audio and video formats will be added. Medibuntu offers a different repository for each version of Ubuntu, make sure to pick the repository that matches your Ubuntu version. Lucky you this How-To is mostly about copy and paste.


First add the Medibuntu repository to the sources list using Wget. Choose the repository that matches your version of Ubuntu. Open a terminal window and type.

For Ubuntu 8.04 use the following repository.

sudo wget --output-document=/etc/apt/sources.list.d/medibuntu.list

For Ubuntu 8.10 use the following repository.

sudo wget --output-document=/etc/apt/sources.list.d/medibuntu.list

After the repository is added

Add the GPG Key. When asked answer Yes to accept the package.

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install medibuntu-keyring && sudo apt-get update

After the repository is added we can add support for encrypted DVD’s (movies) using APT.

sudo apt-get install libdvdcss2

Add support for other media formats like Windows media, Apple Quicktime among many other formats.

sudo apt-get install w32codecs

Just to make sure all the changes go into effect restart the system, by the way my player is Totem Movie player.

Food for thought

Multimedia, Entertainment & Distractions In Ubuntu (Medibuntu)
Software in the free component are not distributed in the Ubuntu repositories because of legal issues with that software in certain countries. Some software such as Amarok and Kaffeine are distributed through the main Ubuntu repositories but with certain functionalities taken away, again because of legal issues. Medibuntu distributes these kind of packages with those functionalities in place.

Software in the non-free component are not distributed in the main Ubuntu repositories because of the licenses that these software are distributed with restricts how they can be distributed. The software in the non-free component are usually not needed for general use as there are alternatives or implementations in other open source licensed software. Some software, such as Google Earth and Adobe Acrobat Reader, are available directly from the company’s website that owns the rights to them.

For other versions of Ubuntu go to

  • berke

    Big thanks!

    On my Ubuntu 8.04 works with default totem player.


  • Matt Zimo

    Thank you so much for posting this! I just installed a new dvd drive in my system this afternoon and was pulling my hair out trying to get it to work.