You have iDVD only if you bought a new Mac containing a SuperDrive DVD burner, or you bought Apple's iLife software suite. iDVD lets you turn your digital photos or camcorder movies into DVDs that work on almost any DVD player, complete with menus, slideshow controls, and other navigation features. iDVD handles the technology; you control the style.
Sure, you can export your finished iMovie project back to a good old VHS cassette. But preserving your work on a DVD gives you a boatload of benefits, including better durability, dramatically better quality, no rewinding, duplication without quality loss, and cheaper shipping. (And besides, you can fit a lot more DVDs on a shelf than VHS tapes.)
DVD players sold since 2002 are generally a safe bet for playing back homemade DVDs, but check the master player compatibility list at www.videohelp.com if you're in doubt. Some players are fussy about which DVD-R brand discs they play, too.
Here's the basic routine for converting an iMovie movie into a Blockbuster-style DVD. (The following pages describe iDVD 5, although other versions of iDVD are similar enough.)
DVD chapters let viewers skip to predefined starting points within a movie, either using a Scene menu or pressing the Next Chapter or Previous Chapter buttons on the remote control. Thanks to the partnership of iMovie and iDVD, you can add markers that replicate this feature to your own movies.
In iMovie, click the iDVD button to open the iDVD palette ...