Play Blu-rays on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS

Couple of month ago I bought a blu-ray USB drive for my xbmc box. At this time I wasn’t able to find a good solution to play Blu-rays on XBMC – now I found a couple of tools which at least allow me to play blu-rays on my Ubuntu Laptop (14.04 LTS).

First we need a tool called MakeMKV which is some kind of Blu-ray ripper, but we don’t use it to copy it into mkv or anything else. MakeMKV has a nice feature which let us stream the content of a Blu-Ray. So let’s start and install MakeMKV from a PPA

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-ebower/ebower
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install makemkv-install
makemkv-install latest

This will install the latest version of makeMKV which in my case is 1.9.0 . Next tool we need is VLC which is in the standard ubuntu catalog.

sudo apt-get install vlc

Connect your USB BluRay and open makeMKV with the command „makemkv“. MakeMKV will start with this window and scans you drives to find a blu-ray drive:

makemkv1

Now insert a Blu-ray and click on the drive, after makMKV has read the disk it will show you the available titles:

makemkv2

Click on the stream icon

makemkv3

After makeMKV has read the disk again it will provide you with a streaming URL. Open VLC and open a network stream:

makemkv4

Add „/stream/title<nummber>.ts“ to the provided URL and start the playback. On some Blu-rays title0 is not the movie, so just read the output of makeMKV to find the right title or just try a couple of them.

bluray1

And now wer’re ready to play Blu-rays on Linux. While testing, I was able to play almost every of my Blu-rays, just a couple of them which use the AACS V9 copy protection weren’t able to play. Well there’s also a script called playbluray.sh which does the job, but in my case I wasn’t able to run this.
This is still not a good method to play Blu-ray on Linux – also most new feature Movie discs will fail in the future cause of the copy protection. I also heard about a couple of tools which allow to play discs from XBMC, maybe I’ll give it a try next time.

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