DVD Zone numbers

Home build / Premium
January 18, 2009 at 03:01:34
Specs: XP Pro/Vista (Dual), P4/3.1 3gig
My DVD drive has always recognised Zone 4 (Australia) DVDs now it has changed to Zone 2 and won't read my DVDs any longer. Googled for an answer and it appears I'm up the creek without a paddle now... how can I restore the Zone without what appears to be "flashing" the drive as the only option.

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January 18, 2009 at 06:42:45
"Most" DVD units (record/play or play only) currently allow you to set the region a max of five times; after-which it locks at the last one.. This means you set it the first time and have four more changes left...

OtH recently suggest that some of the newer units no-longer have the region-settng restriction antymore; that the restrictions are being somewhat relaxed in this regard? I can't comment further on that possiblitity as I haven't seen any other evidence thus far...

I have read that some manufacturers will allow you to send a unit to them for a reset (and thus again allows you to set it 5 times again etc...). There are also firmware "hacks" or "updates/downloads" that work "for some units" - but not all; which is what you have read and referred to as flashing... One has to be very careful using these firmware downloads...

What make is your unit?

A workaround that may work for you. Go to Slysoft.com; download the AnyDVD util; at least get the basic version - why not even the HD upgrade too... You can install it and use for 21 days; after-which you have to buy the license. If it can recognise your dvd unit it will effectively negate the region-code issue for you. This means that "any" region disk will play in your currently set region-2 unit.

Suggest you go there asapo - before midnight Jan 18th... as the licensing deal changes then...; details on their web-site.

AnyDVD will recognise a range of popular dvd units; but NOT the (Panasonic) Mats---a series... They are a true pain...; cannot be "firmwared updated either; thus they are best replaced as/when possible with say a Pioneer or similar?

Another approach: get yourself an external unit (I have Liteon multi-burner - which AnyDVD can handle happily). Set that to your local/home region. Install AnyDVD on your pc/laptop; leave the external as home-region - permanently. Any disk put in the Liteon will be rendered free of region settings (while being played) and allow you to both play it and copy etc. Logically you can use this external unit with any system...

If you have a desktop or tower system and have a spare bay, install an additional DVD (multi-burner?) unit there; set it to your local region; leave it that way; install/use AnyDVD to do as above? If in doubt about whether or not your possibly new/additional DVD unit is OK with AnyDVD... contact Slysoft; and ask them if they have any input re' your intended model? I have found them to be VERY helpful overall in this regard. Obviously they can't check every make/model in use...; they do confirm (as do other similar util manufacturers) that Mats---a region restrictions cannot be by-passed etc.

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January 18, 2009 at 09:39:19
Its really not that complicated. Go into MY COMPUTER, select the drive and right click. Go to PROPERTIES, select the HARDWARE tab, then and then select the drive your having problems with. Select PROPERTIES again, then DVD REGION...and go crazy.

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January 18, 2009 at 09:58:40
I am reading his post as he can no-longer change it; possiby as he has run out of changes...?

But equally it is possible he hasn't run out etc...; but then if he didn't change to setting then who dun it for him; and when etc...? And so on ad infinitum ad aspidestrum...?

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January 18, 2009 at 14:46:26
Thank you for your replies. I am a bit confused as to the term "set the region". How does this occur and how would my unit have set itself to Region 2. Does this occur when discs of different regions are inserted for playing because I have used Region 2 discs a number of times. As far as physically changing the region I have never done that.

There is no such thing as Health Food... just Health Fanatics!

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January 18, 2009 at 15:35:30
The dvd region setting (within a dvd unit) determines just what region (or zone as you called it) can be played in a given dvd unit; a common issue for both PC/laptop and domestic (tv etc.) units...

Originally these units "were" usually region free - or ne could change the region setting ad nauseum (as often as one wished). But due to pressure from US movie moguls (and Sony was involved here as well - I think they were leaned on rather heavily to change things...) that option soon disappeared...

Where to find that setting an change etc.?

Control-panel\system-folder\hardware\device-manager _"button"\cd/dvd-drives. Select yours and look at its properties. There is a tab for region setting(s)... Also it ought to indicate how many changes are left (if any...)

Not wise to play or alter that unless absolutely essential (for reason stated in earlier posts...).

Also when you try to play a disk with a different region setting/requirement you "may" get a window pop up allowing to change "your" dvd unit region setting (much as via control-panel etc. above...) Again think hard etc. before doing so?

I haven't ever come across a dvd unit's region setting changing on its own; usually it required a human intervention...?

You may have had this pop up; not really noted what it said and allowed it to (as in clicked OK or similar and thus) change the region setting for you from whatever it was to what the disk was at the time (if different to the then current dvd setting?

Again I'd have a careful look see as above (control-panel etc.) and see who many chages there are left - if any. If there aren't any left... seriously consider AnyDVD as an option; or get another drive and install that - either internally (and have two in the same "box") are perhaps better - an external one; which latter is then truly mobile/portable etc. And if a second drive (internal or external) set it to your local region - and leave it there. Then you may have one drive for region-2 and another for region-4 (or whatever yours is)? And also still seriously consider AnyDVD as well... as that will effectively make both drives "appear to be region-free"... and allow you to play any region dvd without changing dvd settings; providing of course your internal dvd is OK with AnyDVD - and you get a second drive (e.g. a Liteon) that is also OK with it?...

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January 18, 2009 at 18:52:12
Thank you trvlr... I think you may have hit the answer... one gets so used to clicking "OK" these days I may well have done just that and in doing so have inadvertently changed the zone setting. I'll check the Properties angle and look at the AnyDVD option also.

Regards and thanks again,

There is no such thing as Health Food... just Health Fanatics!

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