I have recently been having a lot of trouble with my MS Windows installations. I really like windows XP (not Vista), I just don't like the spyware, shareware and other junk that comes with it. Also the licensing issues have recently become such a nightmare that I have decided to switch to linux.
I have chosen Ubuntu as my distro of choice and things have been going great. Almost everything works out of the box. The few things that haven't have generally been because of licensing issues (in other words Ubuntu can't include the sofware I want because it isn't free).
My most recent hurtle has been making DVD's play on my Ubuntu installation. I ended up finding a great site (linked to above) which guided me to these two links:
After downloading the correct two packages for my machine ( they installed without any problems or headaches just link a Windows .exe file ) I was able to use MPlayer to play my DVD's. Totem still didn't work for them, but hey, that's ok, MPlayer is as good or better than any programs I could find for MS Windows, and it is free.
Here is a small excerpt from the site:
libdvdcss is a highly portable library for accessing and unscrambling DVDs encrypted with the CSS system. It is part of the VideoLAN project and is used by VLC and all other open source DVD players such as Ogle, xine-based players and MPlayer.
Installing w32codecs in Debian
#dpkg -i w32codecs_20060611-0.0_i386.deb
Installing liddvdcss2 in Debian
#dpkg -i libdvdcss2_1.2.9-0sarge0.0_i386.deb
I pasted the most important part of the site here in case they ever become unavailable. One of my biggest peeves on the web is people to link to something without giving me a summary or the critical information from the site, then having the link not work.