The acidrip utility gives you access to many of the common mencoder functions that rip and encode a DVD in a GUI.
In "Encode a DVD to MPEG4 from the Command Line" [Hack #60] , I discuss how to use mencoder's 2-pass encoding to turn VOB files you have extracted from a DVD into an MPEG4 .avi file. This method works great; however, some people are turned off by the thought of doing encoding entirely from the command line. If you want to use mencoder to encode a DVD, but would rather have a GUI, the acidrip utility provides you with most of the major mencoder options you might want in a GUI interface.
First, install acidrip. If you search Google a bit, you can find third-party acidrip packages for most distributions. For example, Debian packages are available in Marillat's third-party repository that also houses packages such as mplayer and mencoder. If you can't find a pre-built package, then download the acidrip and accompanying lsdvd packages from the official site at http://untrepid.com/acidrip and follow the installation instructions.
With acidrip installed, type
acidrip to start the program. The default
screen that greets you (see Figure 3-5) can be a bit
intimidating at first since it has so many options. For basic ripping there are only a few options you need to worry
about, and the nice thing is that acidrip will remember your settings for next time. That means that after you have it set up, you can rip multiple DVDs ...