Bloody mechanics . . .

Pessimistic buggers, the lot. "Oh . . . dunno. Could be next week."

[24 hours later] "It's done."

He did both of them in the end as the other one was pretty much as badly rotted. "They'll probably last longer than the rest of the car now." Almost certainly, I'd say.

ION . . . what's the best way to play real DVDs (ie encrypted ones) under Debian? Mplayer and gXine and things won't do it with any library or plugin I can find.

On Sunday I went to see Chanbara and then La Clique with L&therecoveringS. Chanbara's a Japanese show with drumming and swordplay/dance. I was mainly there for the drums (excellent - went a little way towards missing Lughnasa) and while the swordplay was sometimes just distracting, at other points it was very good. La Clique's a variety show with about ten acts some of which were merely good and others were stunning. Highlights included Paul Zenon appearing implausibly large things from within pads of paper, a pair of brothers from Sao Paolo (they said) with an impressively intricate and sometimes very funny tango, and a very strange Norwegian contortionist, Captain Frodo, doing things with tennis rackets that I can't bring myself to describe. I haven't been so close to laughing myself sick in years.
  • Current Location: the boxroom
  • Current Mood: pleased
  • Current Music: NoMeansNo - Human
You need to install the libdvdcss package (or possibly libdvdcss2)
Check to see if you have this file:

If you do, run it:
$ su -
# sh /usr/share/doc/libdvdread/examples/
[magic stuff happens]
Excellent. It's been moved to

but here goes . . .

Nope. Thanks, though. Worth trying.
Yeah, I've got that.

The fact that I can't get anything to work is making me wonder about the drive. But I can't prove anything.
It's been a while but essentially, since (IIRC) it's technically illegal to do so, DVD playing isn't included in the core Debian packages.

Assuming you managed to find and install libdvdcss2 correctly (I can't make out from waht you say below) then I got xine-ui to work on sarge.
libdvdcss2 claims to be installed, but Mplayer won't open the disks. libdvdread and libdvdnav claim to be too, but gxine doesn't work.
I think the pacakge I used was called xine-ui but memory fails (As usual). Tried building xine from source? Or is life too short?
Chanbara sound good, I will keep an eye out for them. Thank you!
I understand VLC has the deCSS compiled in, but will only play one .vob file at a time like this, so you have to load all the vobs into the playlist by hand.
I couldn't get anything working by the end of Tuesday. On Thursday I tried again and it had decided to play any disk I threw at it, perfectly.

I have no explanation for this other than malice on the part of the computer.