DIKO is the only free automation tool to convert video to DVD and SVCD. It can allow to reach up to 6 hours in 1 DVD-R or 2 hours in 1 SVCD. Because it's free, for each step of the conversion, there's an optimal way to do it and a optimal software (generally freeware) to use. That means DIKO is actually the core from where all the other free applications are controlled through you commands. It does all the calculations, decides the best quality and gives the right orders.
Coparing to older versions DIKO gained a lot of new features and improvements: much more intuitive interface, all the settings are integrated into tabs, loads automatically the subtitle if it has the same name as the video file and is a srt file, etc.
Being a collection of applications, every parameter can be customized. If you don't make any change, the result files will be an MPV video file, an AC3 or MP2 audio file and the subtitle track. These files can be imported in any authoring application to create the DVD image. But if you wish you can set this to be done by the application. The result file will double in size on your harddisk, but you will get also an .iso image prepared to be burned on a DVD where you will find all the video and audio files. You can let even DIKO to burn the DVD if you prepare a blank disc and choose the 'Burn using ImgBurn' option.
For a newbie it will be a little difficult to understand all the options and features of DIKO. Only after reading the Help you will get in touch with this software.
Pluses: can even burn your DVD's and SVCD's; can create the subtitles for DVD format or fixed, has support for AC3 audio encoding; free
Drawbacks / flaws: works only with .srt subtitles;
In conclusion: The best free DVD and SVCD creator.