How to Fix Bad DVD Navigation Structure

Even small defects in the internal structure of a DVD can produce errors and playback issues.
... Paul Katz/Photodisc/Getty Images

DVDs are an optical media often used for storing large amounts of data, including video files and movies. The format has various internal structures which must be correct for the data to be read or further processed. Encryption and content scrambling systems can also affect these structures, as errors can be introduced when you attempt to copy or back up an encrypted DVD onto a file. Fix these issues with some troubleshooting or by using special software.

1 DVD Errors

DVD navigation structure errors can occur for a few reasons, and can occur from the actual optical media or a DVD in file format. When a DVD video has errors introduced in the actual recording process, or when a DVD copy or rip doesn't process correctly, then the DVD structure can be damaged and not play properly. Some fix programs can work directly with any DVD disc, while others only work with unencrypted and unprotected DVD file folders.

2 DVDFab DVD Copy

DVDFab DVD Copy is a program which you can use to burn a DVD onto another backup DVD, or make a copy of a DVD onto a hard disk, in an ISO image or DVD file folder. This program also lets you customize the backups or copies in various ways. Additionally, it lets you copy DVDs that are damaged or scratched. It can recover from most read errors, as well as repair internal structure errors so that you can get a backup or copy which processes correctly. As of January 2014, this program cost $50 and works on Windows XP through Windows 8; there is also a Mac version.

3 FixVTS

FixVTS is a free utility which processes DVD files and automatically corrects internal structural errors. These problems can cause stuttering playback or complete freezes of the video, and also "invalid DVD navigation" errors. You need access to the unprotected DVD file folder to use this program. The program can operate on particular DVD files or the full DVD. Unless you know the specific file which is causing problems, have the program run a full scan.

4 Burning Software

If you've burned your own DVD, however, and are experiencing problems with it, then you may want to try a few things before running any additional programs. Make sure the media disc you're using is of good quality. Low-quality media can introduce all kinds of errors and problems. You may also want to try a slower burn rate with your DVD burning software -- lowering the burn rate from a default value can sometimes fix problems. Finally, you may want to try different DVD authoring programs.

Michael Martinez has been working with computers since 1993. He fondly remembers the launch of Windows 95 and the original Pentium processors. Martinez has a Bachelor of Science in computer science.