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libdvdcss (or libdvdcss2 in some repositories) is a free and open source software library for accessing and unscrambling DVDs encrypted with the Content Scramble System (CSS). libdvdcss is part of the VideoLAN project and is used by VLC media player and other DVD player software packages, such as Ogle, xine-based players, and MPlayer.
1.4.2 / March 23, 2018
Linux, BSD, BeOS|
Windows 95 and later
Mac OS X, Solaris, HP-UX
|License||GNU GPL v2|
Comparison with DeCSSEdit
libdvdcss is not to be confused with DeCSS. Whereas DeCSS uses a cracked DVD player key to perform authentication, libdvdcss uses a generated list of possible player keys. If none of them works (for instance, when the DVD drive enforces region coding), libdvdcss then performs a brute-force attack, ignoring the DVD's region code (if any). The legal status of libdvdcss is controversial but there has been - unlike DeCSS - no known legal challenge to it as of May 2018.
Many GNU/Linux distributions do not contain libdvdcss (for example, Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora and openSUSE) due to fears of running afoul of DMCA-style laws, but they often provide the tools to let the user install it themselves. For example, it used to be available in Ubuntu through Medibuntu, which is no longer available.
Libdvdcss alone is only a library and cannot play DVDs. DVD player applications, such as VLC media player, use this library to decode DVDs. Libdvdcss is optional in many open-source DVD players, but without it, only non-encrypted discs will play.
- VLC FAQ
- Many Debian derivatives provide a script in /usr/share/doc/libdvdread4/install-css.sh
- http://mac.softpedia.com/get/Development/Libraries/libdvdcss.shtml LibDVDcss compiled and install instructions for Mac OS X