How To Play DVD In Ubuntu 14.04 And 16.04

Can't read DVD in Ubuntu?

Ubuntu won’t play DVD? Even after you installed all codecs from Ubuntu Restricted Extra package? Welcome to the club. You are not alone who cannot play DVD in Ubuntu Ubuntu 14.04. In this quick tip, I’ll show you how to fix the issues with playing DVD or even encrypted DVD in Ubuntu 14.04.

This article was originally written for Ubuntu 13.10 but as many readers have verified that it is also applicable to Ubuntu 14.04 and Ubuntu 16.04.

This issue was raised by an It’s FOSS reader Etienne Batori on things to do after installing Ubuntu 13.10. Here we shall see, in a more organized way, what we did to fix this issue of Ubuntu not reading DVDs.

Play DVDs in Ubuntu 14.04 and 16.04:

We need to install few codecs required specifically to play DVDs comfortably. These are:

  • libdvdcss2: to recognize DVD
  • libdvdread4: to read DVD
  • libdvdnav4: to navigate DVD

Step 1:

First step (actually optional) is to get VLC media player. You can install VLC from Ubuntu Software Center or using the following command in terminal:

sudo apt-get install vlc

Once you have it installed, install libdvdcss2. It used to come by default with Medibuntu repository. But since Medibuntu is no longer available, you will have to install this library from the VLC repository. Use the links bellow to install libdvdcss2:

Double click on the downloaded deb files to install it via Ubuntu Software Center. Alternatively, you can use GDebi to install .deb files more easily.

Step 2:

Once we have it, lets install libdvdread4 and libdvdnav4. Use the following command in the terminal:

sudo apt-get install libdvdread4 libdvdnav4

If the DVD play back does not work, try to set your region code. You can follow the instructions given here to set the region code. It worked for me without it.

Suggested read
Fix No Bootable Device Found Error After Installing Ubuntu

That would be it. I hope that after completing all these steps, you would be able to play DVD in Ubuntu 14.04 (as well as in Linux Mint 17). Let me know if it worked for you or if you still can’t read DVD in Ubuntu 16.04 or Ubuntu 14.04.

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Still not working after following this procedure. VLC returns the following error:
Playback failure:
DVDRead could not open the disc "/dev/sr0".
Your input can't be opened:
VLC is unable to open the MRL 'dvd:///dev/sr0'. Check the log for details.

How do I check logs? This is a necessary skill that I should already know.

I'm still a few days old user for Ubuntu and I bought my PC with Ubuntu pre-installed on it.

I have been trying to copy some audio files from old CDs I have. I managed to copy files from 3 CDs without any problems and suddenly starting the fourth CD I started getting the message "Unable to mount audio dist .. Message recipient disconnected from message bus without replying". And now I can't access the files on my CDs!! I tried some workarounds from this forum but nothing worked with me (like installing something called "backend").

Now, I'm trying to download VLC and try this solution of yours to see if it will work but the installation goes up till 100% and then stops there and does not move!! Any suggestions?


You are using Software Center to install VLC? It should be installed already. Did you check it in the menu?

Yes, I installed and the problem still persists. I think something is wrong with the CDs because I tried others and they worked find on VLC. Thanks a lot for taking the time to answer my question.

Editing my above comment: Yes, I installed VLC and the problem still persists. I think something is wrong with the CDs because I tried others and they worked fine on VLC. Thanks a lot for taking the time to answer my question.

Michael Lindberg

It says my movie is 15 seconds long and is just a black screen and that's all it plays. Any ideas?

Thanks, worked good, only installed libdvdcss2 as terminal said the other two were latest versions already. Thanks for keeping it.

Dear Abh, Many thanks; this worked flawlessly for Lubuntu 16.04 on 32bit - I will now do this on my 64 bit machine. You are a star! Ri.

Thank you so much. It worked for me on 16.04. after simply following the instructions.
Laptop : Lenovo G580 ( DVD drive : MATSHITA DVD-RAM UJ8C1)

Worked for me on Kubuntu 14.04 - thanks

Thanks so much. Worked for me ubuntu16.4

Hi! I am currently using Peppermint 7
I hope this will work for me too

I'm using Kubuntu 16.04
I followed the instructions and it worked, thank you.
However, since I rebooted my laptop it no longer works.
When I try to open a DVD in VLC media player, I get :
Playback failure:
DVDRead could not open the disc "/dev/sr0".
Your input can't be opened:
VLC is unable to open the MRL 'dvd:///dev/sr0'. Check the log for details.
I followed the instructions again, but it still doesn't work.
Any help would be much appreciated.

Abhishek Prakash, It would help if you could add downloadable links to libdvdread4 and libdvdnav4 because they are no longer default list of ubuntu's terminal. Here are the links I used to get dvd's working in my computer:

Ps...I used to be able to get dvd's working in VLC by opening the disc in VLC and selecting 'DVD' and then changing '/dev/sr0' to '/dev/dvd' but with no result.

I did just manage to get a dvd menu to work in vlc by going: Media>Open Multiple Files... then I would go to my dvd player via the 'media' folder and then select the dvd's video files and pressing Shift or Ctrl and selecting all of the files in the VIDEO TS file and then selecting >Open.

I am using ubuntu 16.10 and I the terminal doesn't recognise any of these packages anymore so, I googled 'libdvdread4 official download' and I went to: (which I dowloaded and installed in the ubuntu software centre.

Then I googled 'libdvdnav4 official dowload' and found this link:

I dowloaded the .deb file and clicked and installed it in ubuntu software centre, then I opened a dvd in a default ubuntu video player and it worked.

I can't seem to get this to work in VLC either.

Thank You so much! It worked after thousand of attempts from other sources. You are brilliant.

I have used Ubuntu for more than ten years and it still frustrates me. Evidently when I upgraded from 12.04 to 14.04 in December I lost the ability to read DVDs, which I had before. When my wife brought home a DVD from the Library it wouldn't play. I spent several hours typing in commands offered by various sites as the solution to the problem before finding your site. Your instructions worked perfectly. Thank you very much. I assume the problem is that one of the necessary codexes is proprietary and Ubuntu refuses to include it in its distribution. That's well and good, but the purpose of an OS is to allow the user to use his computer -- not to demonstrate one's objection to practices of the commercial software world. How many thousands have given up on Ubuntu and returned to Windows? When Totem doesn't recognize a DVD couldn't it at least give a more helpful message than "An error has occurred"? And yes, I like VCL much better.
As a classic mystery lover, have you read The Moving Toyshop by Edmund Crispin (1946)?
Thanks again.

I did a fresh install of Ubuntu Mate 16.04. CD/DVD’s not working. Installed Ubuntu Restricted Extras. VLC was pre installed. Also installed “libdvdcss2” (32 bit), “libdvdread4”, “libdvdnav4” thru the terminal. When I go to play an instructional CD, a CD icon shows up on my desktop with the title of the CD showing that’s it’s in the CD-dvd rom. Back in Computer there is nothing showing that the CD is in the player, in either of the CD/DVD’s.

It seems to me that when I installed Ubuntu 12.04 that just putting in the Restricted Extras did the trick

I don’t know what to do first, or if there is a less complicated way to do this.

Before I go any further, and mess things up...Please help.


Hi, I bought a new TSST TS-U633A USB 3.0 drive and I an not able to use it in Linux. Mac is no problem. Linux (Lubuntu 16.04) is mounting it but no software will play the movie-files. MakeMKV is saying that there is protection on it that is not able to work around. Region is "SET", according to the terminal. And it is the correct region for my original DVD. So I used your libdvdcss2, but still not possible.

Install Mint 18 {Sarah} and after much tearing-out of hair, this worked. Thanks Heaps!!

Any idea why When I run

sudo apt-get install libdvd-pkg

I get this?

E: Could not get lock /var/lib/dpkg/lock - open (11: Resource temporarily unavailable)

E: Unable to lock the administration directory (/var/lib/dpkg/), is another process using it?


You probably tried installing something else and haven't closed the process.

If everything else has been closed, use this command, with caution:

sudo rm /var/lib/dpkg/lock

The "lock" file is exactly that, a file called "lock" in the folder "/var/lib/dpkg/" which the package manager checks for whenever it performs an action. If it finds the "lock" file it won't proceed; if you delete it, you can get back to doing what you wanted.

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