Computer Services

Tel 650.548.1010
Burlingame, CA USA


Watching DVD movies on your PC

Revised on

Originally posted on January 13th, 2003

InterVideo vs. PowerDVD

I have a TV and a DVD player at home to watch movies like most us but a lot of people like to use their laptops or computers to watch DVD movies. Probably the most popular are college dorm rooms where students with limited space combine computers with DVD players.

Most laptops, desktop PCs and Apple Computers come standard with DVD player drive built in. Surprisingly, Windows XP doesn't have the capability to play DVD movies right out of the box. Unless of course if you purchased your PC from a leading reseller like Micron or Dell. These guys bundle a third party DVD player like Intervideo's WinDVD or CyberLink's PowerDVD.

When I first got my copy of Windows XP home some time ago I was very excited with the idea of watching DVDs in my office or demonstrating this to prospective clients who come in to my store. So, I followed the instruction of a Microsoft tech support person and downloaded InterVideo's WinDVD XPack for Windows XP. I loaded it up and not soon after that, I discovered that my video locks up while watching the movie (Cable Guy).

I called Intervideo and got on hold for one of their excellent support techs... he came on and told me to do 2 things. 1. check my Task Manager and look at the CPU usage. I did and it was at 13% with no other programs loaded... anyway you get the gist of what he was doing... shrugging me off. Number 2 was the download the latest driver from my video card manufacturer... oh the days of Windows 98 are back! Man. I thought we dumped those days when Win XP came out.

So do you wanna know how I fixed the problem? I had a copy of PowerDVD by CyberLink sitting right on my work counter that came in a boxed of DVD reader drives and I loaded it right up... It worked. I watched Cable Guy and my Dave Mathews Band video CD with no jerks or skips or anything.

Lesson: the guys at InterVideo don't right good drivers. At least for my setup.

When I wrote this article my computer consisted of the following:

Asus A7V333 mobo, 512mb, ATI Radeon 7500 and a SB Audigy. I didn't have any issues with my system at all and it ran perfectly.

So, go out and get yourself a copy of PowerDVD.




Website | 1675 Rollins Road, Suite B2 | Burlingame | California | 94010 | 650.548.1010