I tried downloading DVD Shrink (used in the past I think) but it doesn't seem to be available anymore.
I'm still getting very large file sizes and I don't know why. I just edited a home video which is supposed to be 320x240 lines of resolution, although I think when I captured the footage months ago for some reason I captured the footage at 720. When I edited the video down to 30 seconds and then saved as an uncompressed AVI file, for some reason the outputted file was 752MB. I am aware that AVI takes up alot space being very large, but for a 30 second video it surely shouldn't be that large should it?.
DVDShrink is still available, the latest version costs $5 about £3.50 (its a donation). Download DVDShrink for FREE from the OFFICIAL DVDShrink Site! - dvdshrink.org
I collect films, got thousands of disks but don't bother converting these days, simply no need as the majority of modern DVD/BR players will read various video formats, many have a USB port and you can just copy your ripped DVD to usb stick and watch via that. These days I rip to home network (NAS) and my TVs access the files directly, no need for disks or external drives.
If your loosing random files I'd suggest you get a new external drive asap. If your TV is connected to your router you should be able to easily share the videos stored there, your smart TV should be able to read the files, your making your own network.