Ok, I have been using the following to rip/write DVD;s O/S: W2K External DVD-R: Sony DRX-530UL IEEE 1394 Bus Host Controller: Adaptec PCI Firewire Card Ripping Software: DVD Shrink 126.96.36.199 Writing: Nero Ultra 188.8.131.52 Media: RICOH-JPN / CMC-MAG Stand Alone DVD Player: Sony (el cheapo model) My success rate using the above method has been very good, about 95%. The few problems i have had, involved DVD shrink not being able to complete the encoding, for whatever reason. In future situations where DVD Shrink is unable to rip, I was thinking about trying to use DVD43.exe to rip and then Nero to write. I've read the posts here concerning how DVD43 works, but i'm a little confused about a couple of things. 1.) Is DVD43 designed to work as a stand alone ripper? or as some sort of utility that runs in the background, to assist a ripper like DVD Shrink? 2.) Is it necessary for DVD43 to always be running in the background? 3.) Does DVD43 require an ASPI driver? (I have W2K, and do not have an ASPI driver; i don't need one to run my current routine) Ok, what I really want is an alternative stand alone ripper, which does not require an ASPI driver (i know I can download one from either MSN or Nero, etc, but i prefer not to, if at all possible)and works with W2K. Also, I do not want any program that requires that it always be running in the background (only Norton, my firewall and normal sys processes run all the time). Is DVD43 for me? Thanks in advance for any comments/info.