One of the most common questions asked by new forums users is "how do I get my DVD player to read this file?" The answer often ends up either seeming too complicated for the inexperienced user or being user friendly at the expense of quality. Given the amount of work that's been put into the development of free and value priced software for the hobbyist market, there should be a way to dive in and make a high quality DVD.
This is the first in a series of basic DVD authoring guides. Each guide will walk you through a single step or the use of a single tool along the way from video file on your computer to DVD in the pickiest standalone DVD player. Since all the video files used in this guide are in the public domain, anyone with an internet connection can follow the same instructions to create the same DVD.
Besides helping you learn how to author DVDs, these guides should also provide a window into how commercial DVDs are authored. You may be surprised at how artistic the composition something as basic as a system of DVD menus can be. This project won't get into advanced authoring, but will attempt to show how you can create visually pleasing menus quickly and easily.
Like most people I have my own preferences when it comes to software. The project will be designed around using the tools I'm most comfortable with in a way I feel gives me good results. Later additional guides will be added for accomplishing the same tasks using alternate software. In most cases the software required for this project will either be free or have a free trial available. In other cases there may be free software available that isn't included in the first round of guides, but may be later.
Basic DVD Project guides
Last updated: 27 February 2008