We are a software vendor that produces an installation program that is large enough to go on a double-layer DVD – i.e., we make a “data disk,” not a “video disk.”
For internal testing purpose, we’ve been producing ISO images and having the testers worldwide mount the ISO images as hard drive-based DVD-ROM’s. Producing and distributing test DVDs would’ve slowed down iterative testing, and the ISO images contain exactly what the customers will get (data-wise).
In the past, we’ve shipped master DVDs to the replicator, but are looking into electronic delivery of the data, mainly to speed things up. The replicator is requesting a DDP image of each layer from the master DVD because that’s the industry standard. They claim that an ISO image doesn’t have the formatting information provided in a DDP image; i.e., they don’t want the burden of partly “authoring” the DVD because they cannot guarantee the results if they burned the ISO images themselves.
(1) Are the duplicator’s claims true? Does an ISO image contain just the data, plus some basic information like the volume label?
(2) How much does “formatting” matter for a pure “data disk,” versus a “video disk”? Surely, things like layer breaks wouldn’t really matter for a data disk.
(3) Eclipse Suite 3.0 seems to offer ISO-to-DDP conversion functionality. Does it basically add formatting information to the ISO image, depending on the physical media the user will ultimately ship to customers?
(4) There are tons of free ISO-mounting utilities. Is there a similar utility that can simultaneously load the two DDP images meant for a DVD-9 disk, to emulate a production DVD? (The idea is to aid in quick testing worldwide.)
Thanks a lot.