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Stop DVD Player from opening when a disc is inserted, plus tips

Stop DVD Player from opening when a DVD is inserted, plus more

Macs are configured to automatically launch the DVD Player application when a movie disc is inserted. That’s great when you want to watch the DVD right away, but sometimes this behavior is unwanted.

How do you stop DVD Player from opening when you pop a DVD in your computer? Die-hard Mac fans are probably going to laugh or get annoyed that a whole post is being written about this subject, but the fact is that a ton of people are interested in the answer. It’s a very common question and, to be honest, rightly so. Apple didn’t put this setting where you’d think it would be, which has a lot of folks confused.

You would expect to find some kind of option in DVD Player’s preferences which takes care of this situation, but it’s nowhere to be found. Instead, we have to venture into System Preferences and the CDs & DVDs pane. At the bottom of this window there is a drop-down menu next to “When you insert a video DVD.” Selecting “Ignore” from this menu instead of “Open DVD Player” will achieve the desired result. No more auto-opening DVD Player!

Stop DVD Player from opening when a disc is inserted

Since this is a short tip, I don’t want any readers to feel shortchanged. Why not throw a couple more DVD Player related tips in here too?

The first thing we’ll tackle is the issue of aspect ratios. Movies are being made in a variety of widescreen formats today and, although our computer screens are going wide as well, they don’t quite match up. This results in black bars appearing on the top and bottom of the screen when DVDs are viewed in full screen mode. You can eliminate these black bars in Apple’s DVD Player by going to Window > “Video Zoom” and cropping off part of the picture. A semi-transparent black window will pop up, which lets you manually adjust the zoom amount. The easier method, however, is clicking the Auto Zoom button. Poof! The black bars are gone.

Video Zoom in DVD Player

The final DVD Player tip is kind of cool even though most users won’t really have a need for it. When playback is stopped in DVD Player a plain black screen is displayed. That seems logical, but there’s a more visually appealing option available as well. Go to File > “Get Disc Info” in the menu bar and click on the “Jacket Picture” tab in the window that comes up. From here you can either select an image of your choice or grab the current frame from the DVD to replace that black placeholder screen which displays while the DVD is stopped. Functional? Not really. Still kind of cool to try? It sure is!

Changing the Jacket Picture in DVD Player

8 Comments Have Been Posted (Leave Your Response)

Thank you very much !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

” the fact is that a ton of people are interested in the answer·” I don’t know whether there is a ton of people, but I was one of them. Many thanks!

I simply express my appreciation! Yay and thanks :-)

I might have never discovered this solution, in ‘Preferences.’ Thank you very much!

The OS X DVD Player has a preferences option that says, “When a disc is inserted: Start playing disc”. If you un-check this it has zero effect as far as I can tell, as the DVD Player still starts on its own when you insert a DVD. Your instructions corrected the issue. Thanks.

Captain Obvious
July 24th, 2015, 5:21 PM

It might be obvious, but although “Auto Zoom” will eliminate the black bars at the edges of the screen, part of the content of the movie at the other edges of the screen will be eliminated, as well.

I came looking for this because I am one of the peopler who knew that I would likely find the answer in System Preferences, felt great when I chose to ignore, but can[t figure out why, even though it is set to ignore DVDs, which DVD Player *still* launches when I insert a DVD. Is it because I sue a non-Apple LG DVD Player?

This is my first stop, but still unsure how I can get DVDs to stop launching, even though I have set this preference.

Adam K.S, I know it’s been years, but this may help *someone*. I had the same problem you did (running Mojave): it was already set to “Ignore” in System Preferences, but DVD Player kept opening. It turned out that what I needed to do was change “Ignore” to “Open DVD Player” then change it back again. Apparently the System Preferences interface can be used to change this behaviour, but can’t be trusted to tell you what the current setting really is.