The first time that I transferred movies to my hdd I believe that I used a program called anydvd
. This isn't a free program but it is worth it, and it comes with a 21 day free trial. This trial gives you access to all the features as well. As for a free program I am not sure of any good ones, but I can look around.
Ask for file type to create, I would recommend Matroska also called .mkv
. This format works a little better streaming over a home network in my opinion.