Mounting CD images - step-by-step guide needed!

vbimport

#1

Hello–
I’ve been searching throughout the cdfreaks.com forums trying to find step-by-step instructions on mounting CD images, so that I don’t have to keep swapping CD’s when the kids want to play various games on their PC.

It’s running XP Pro. It’s an AMD Athlon box and has a 30G drive that’s nearly completely full. I’ve got a new 160G drive sitting right here in front of me, waiting to be put in as the second hard drive.

I’ve read what I’ve found on cdfreaks.com and have figured out that I need either MagicDisc or Daemon Tools, so I downloaded both of those. However, it seems to me that none of the posts I’ve found on the forums have complete information (or perhaps I’m just slow).

Oh, I’ve also got Nero, which will create my disc images for me.

So, what I’m not clear on is:

  1. When I format the new disc drive, do I have to partition it into two dozen 700MB drives, each one which will later have an ISO image of one of the games installed?

  2. Do I uninstall all the games I want to do this for and then reinstall them from the new drives once I have the images mounted?

  3. Where does the “virtual drive” come into play? Does Daemon Tools make it look as though you have 24 CD-ROM drives each with a CD for a different game in it?

  4. I hope that I don’t still have to mount and unmount each game, every time the kids want to play something… I hope that I can either mount a dozen or two games and just let the kids play without bugging me or my wife every five minutes when they want to switch from playing Dora to playing Blue’s Clues. If I can only mount one at a time, then I’ll also need instructions on how to put together a series of batch files that will allow the kids to simply click an icon which will mount the game’s image and start the game.

What I need is for someone to reply to this post and give, simple, step-by-step instructions on how to do this, including the most simple of tasks.

Thanks.

korz

Brew Beer At Home!
I wrote a book that tells you how.
See: http://www.brewinfo.org


#2

Let’s say you have a game, The game is 3 cd’s.
Let’s say you have a CD/DvD Burner.

Use a program like UltraIso and create three images to a folder on your desktop. Call them, Name of game Disk 1,Disk 2,Disk 3.

Use program like Nero, Burn images to blank DvD-R as data.
Explore the disk after and you should see three iso images on the disk.

Install Daemon tools.
Place your newly burned data disk in drive. If Autorun option feature starts close window.
Double click on my computer, Notice that there is a extra drive letter added.
This is your virtual drive.
Notice icon on task bar right corner.
Right click on Daemon icon
Select virtual cd/dvdrom
Select device
Select mount image
Find the path to your drive,
Select name of game disk one and open.
Installation of game will begin.
When it asks for disk 2
Go to task bar and right click on Daemon icon.
Select virtual cd/dvdrom
Select device
Select mount image
Find the path to your drive,
Select name of game disk two and open.
Installation of disk two should continue or you have to tell it to resume.
Keep repeating until the game is fully installed.
If it as for disk one, goto back and mount disk one.

You will always have to mount disk one to play the game.
Play as normal.
Don’t forget to unmount image when you are finished playing the game.

Most games require you to have disk one in the drive. In this case you will have disk image one mounted with Daemon tools. Sometimes you will have to emulate protections such as safedisc,securom,laserlock and rmps. You can do this by selecting the emulation options. Now play your game like you would normally.

I know this is a mouthful, I tried to put it a simple as I could. But in a nutshell this is it. You will find out that sometimes even if you are emulating a protection your backup disk image might not always work. This is where it get’s a little more complicated and require other programs to get them to work. But in your case, because you are backing up kids games I don’t think you will have very many issues.

:cool: :cool:


#3

Thanks. That’s exactly what I needed! Perhaps this thread should be made sticky or maybe a pointer to platinumsword’s reply should be put into the FAQ.

Alas, it is as I had feared: it sounds like I’ll have to mount and unmount various games, so even though I won’t have to be constantly opening the cabinet (I have a locked cabinet for the case so that one of my kids can’t eject the CD or press the reset button while another is playing), I’ll still have to mount and unmount images for them.

That is, I guess, unless I figure out how to do the mounting and umounting from a batch file. By the way, you remind me not to forget to unmount the image. What happens if the kids power down with it still mounted? Not a catastrophe, I hope!

While I you were answering my question, I was installing the 160G drive into my #3 box (the kids’ PC). While I was there, I also replaced the ribbon cables with round ones and swapped out the ancient 4x CD burner for a slightly less ancient 16x burner (which I pulled from my #2 PC when I replaced it with a Benq 1655 Lightscribe). I didn’t build the 3# PC, by the way… it’s a Gateway 700MHz Athlon, but works fine for the kids, for now. I can’t wait until they insist they need dual Opterons and 4G of 2-2-2-2 RAM.

Just for completeness, I suppose I should mention that I’ve got an NEC ND3440 in my #1 PC. The NEC and Benq have worked nearly flawlessly for me . I’ve burned probably 50 CD-R’s, a couple of DVD+RW’s, and a dozen DVD-R’s with only one coaster. I use TY CD-R’s and DVD-R’s and the best DVD+RW I could find were Taiwanese Verbatims, but the couple I burned haven’t given me any trouble yet.

If anyone knows if Daemon Tools has a command line interface (or, MagicDisc does… that plays the same role as Daemon Tools, right?) please let me know.

Well, thanks again platinumsword for answering my main question. :clap: I can proceed with the formatting and partitioning of the new 160G drive now.

korz

Brew Beer At Home!
I wrote a book that tells you how.
See: http://www.brewinfo.org


#4

Virtual Clone Drive is freeware from Slysoft.
Double clicking on the iso image will load it straight into the virtual drive.

Also, Game Jackal (not freeware) will dump a small image (sometimes less than 1MB) to your HD which will respond to any requests from programs to access particular cd’s.

Partitioning in windows->Right click my computer->manage->Logical Disk Manager.
Right click on the new drive->initialise.
Right click in the black space -> New partition & set size.
Repeat as necessary.

When you come to making the partition for the game CD iso … format it, allow compression, but don’t assign a drive letter (or you can if you want to, but also mount it to the folder)

Create a new folder on the desktop. Then mount the game CD partition in the empty folder on the desktop :wink:
(right click on the formatted partition->Change Drive letter & paths->Add->Mount in Empty NTFS folder->Desktop/games folder)

You can then dump all game images to the folder on the desktop.


#5

Get daemon tools and reed the help file. Problem solved there. Number two problem. Most games have copy protection so you will need to learn to burn them and at the same time eliminate the copy protection. That is not a easy thing to tell you how to do it. Different games different protection, different tools to burn them and even your burnner has a role to play. So I wish you luck on your new hobby because burning games is definately a new hobby.


#6

Thanks everyone.

So it seems that I can take two routes: 1. either DaemonTools or MagicDisk, or 2. GameJackal.

Can members post regarding GameJackal and let me know how you like it? It seems to be a great way to go. There’s even a trial version to see if it will work for me.

Most of the games are kids’ games (for example Dora the Explorer), so they really don’t have any serious copy protection. I have made copies of the CD’s simply using Nero DiskCopy and the copies run fine (I can store the originals away and make another copy if they get scratched up… which is likely because of how much disk changing we do). Three or four of the games are very new and for “grownups” so they are likely to have proper copy protection. One is Midway’s L.A. Rush, another is EA’s NFS Underground.

I’m leaning towards the GameJackal route… I’d appreciate either encouragement or warnings… whatever your experiences are.

I installed the 160G drive yesterday and tried to set up the system today, but hosed a few things. I found that 1/2 of my 30G boot drive was taken up by three directories: My Documents, Shared Documents, and Program Files. I thought that I could create four partitions on the new 160G disk (one for each of these, say 20G for My Documents, 65G for Shared Documents, 65G for Program Files, and 10G for Drive K, which is where I would put all the GameJackal files). I then thought that I could rename My Documents, create an empty dir called My Documents and mount the 20G “My Documents” logical disk on that directory. I would then copy everything from the renamed original dir over to the new disk, and delete the old dir. Doing this for the three dirs would free up 15G of space on the original boot drive and give me lots more space for swap and temp. Alas, it won’t work. My Documents and Shared Documents are special files with special links and I’ve succeeded in hosing my system… beyond even what GoBack and SystemRestore can fix.

In retrospect, I probabaly had made the Program Files dir far too big anyway. I had about 20 (mostly kids’) games installed and still Program Files was only 5.5G, so making it 20G would have been more than enough. I use this machine for storing most of our digital photos, and the Shared Dir is where I put them so I can access them from the other machines around the house. That’s the partition that needs to be the biggest, now that I think of it.

It’s been over two years, so it’s time to reload the OS anyway. I’m probably going to swap the drives so that the 160G is the boot disk, reload the OS (XP Pro), reinstall all my software, and then copy all my personal data over from the 30G drive. Not sure what to do with the 30G. I might make three partitions, 2G, 2G, and 26G. Use the 26G for online backups of the most important files, and use the 2G partitions for the swap space and temp dir. To be most beneficial, I’d have to reorganize the drives so that the HD’s would be the Masters and the CD-R and CD-RW drives would be the Slaves, so that the two HD’s would not share an IDE cable. Now, would I put the CD burner on the IDE cable with the 160G or with the 30G… is my data likely to go straight from the original directory to the CD burner, or is it more likely to be copied to the TEMP dir and then to the burner? I usually only make one copy, so I would guess the former is more likely, right?

Comments?

Thanks again.

korz


#7

Quick … Do yourself a favour & download MS powertoys-> “Tweak UI” :wink:
It lets you set the directories easily & painlessly (per user settings, except Shared directories).

Why seperate “My Documents” & “Shared Documents”? It seems unnecessary.

50GB total for “Documents” should suffice for the next few years, until you buy a 1000MB drive :wink:

50GB for “Program Files” would give you about 10-20 NEW Games (or about 200 old games) + every office / imaging/ DVD application you’d ever expect to use.

1/2GB for game jackal files would suffice they are VERY small, although I’d suggest they would be stored in either of the above anyway, so creating an entire partition would just slow you down anyway.

A 1GB/2GB partition at the start of the drive would be helpful for a swap file. Have 2/3 on your new drive & 1/2 on your old drive.

As to the organisation… tough call.

You have 2 HD’s, one old, and 2 old CDR drives?
HD1->133.
Old HD2->66
CDRW->33
CD->33.
I’d still suggest putting the optical drives seperate to the HD’s.
Make your new 160GB the primary master.

Use the 30G for temporary stuff :wink: Outputs from video operations, etc.


#8

I have my personal “My Documents” directory separate from “Shared Documents” because this is the kids’ PC, although I still have a bunch of my own files on there. The kids have their own login. I’ve backed up the files onto CD’s and have copied all of them over to my new machine, but still sometimes want to have access to them and I don’t always have both PC’s up (actually, my LAN is currently down, ever since a lightning strike… both NICs seem okay… I think the actual cable got fried… probably will go wireless this time). I put all our family’s digital photos in the Shared Documents directory, so I can access them from any machine over the net (when it works). I’ve got XP Pro, so I can password protect My Documents and then the kids can’t go in there and change my 2004 tax return.

Debro says:
You have 2 HD’s, one old, and 2 old CDR drives?
HD1->133.
Old HD2->66
CDRW->33
CD->33.
I’d still suggest putting the optical drives seperate to the HD’s.
Make your new 160GB the primary master.

Use the 30G for temporary stuff Outputs from video operations, etc.

I don’t know that much about game cracks, but I do know quite a bit about PC’s in general. I’ve built three, the latest an Athlon 64 X2 3800+ box with 2G of dual-channel DDR RAM and dual 250G drives. The mobo has a controller channel for each of my 3 drives, so my OS/App HD and my DVD burner are each a primary on their own ATA133 channel and the Audio HD is on a SATA150. It’s tweaked for multitrack audio recording (everything non-essential is ripped out or turned off… LAN/firewire/parallel&serial ports: all disabled in the BIOS, classic windows interface although I’m running XP Pro, not even a modem in the case) and I can mix over 100 tracks simultaneously.

The way you choose what goes where on your IDE and SATA controllers is that you want to make sure that you split anything up (i.e. don’t share a cable) that will need to talk to each other or will need to be used simultaneously.

Therefore, if you are running something like Sonar 5 PE (multitrack audio recording software), as I am, put the OS and applications on one drive on an ATA133 or SATA bus and the drive on which the audio (.wav) files go should be connected to a different bus… in my case a SATA controller. Now, there is no chance of the audio stream being interrupted because Sonar 5 needs something.

Similarly, if you are going to be burning a CD’s or DVD’s from data that’s on your boot drive, you want to put the boot drive and the burner on different cables. The burner will still be the bottleneck, but putting them on separate cables means you can still do things with your PC while burning.

My only uncertainty here was whether Nero uses TEMP space even when you are burning a single disk (i.e. not burning multiple disks). I’m pretty sure that if I’m burning, say, .jpg’s from my boot drive, Nero doesn’t make a copy of them to TEMP first. Therefore, I would want to put the burner on the other cable, not share it with the boot drive.

If I was going to be burning dozens of copies of a CD, say my music demos, I think that Nero would make an image in TEMP space. In this case, if I do use part of the 30G for TEMP, I think I’d want my burner to be on the same cable as my boot drive so that my system could read from the 30G and write to the burner simultaneously.

Thanks for all your help. I’m going to go reload the OS onto the 160G drive and start fresh on that machine. I’ll then get a trial version of GameJackal and see if that meets all my needs.

korz


#9

Daemon Tools does support command-line switches, so you could use a batch file, but I prefer the free scripting language AutoIt

;Sample AutoIt v3 script  http://www.autoitscript.com/autoit3/

;Replace following with path to ISO or CUE
$iso = "C:\Documents and Settings\Administrator\My Documents\Example.iso"

;Uncomment the following line if you want
;SplashTextOn("Loading...", @LF & "Please Wait...")

FileChangeDir("C:\program files\D-Tools\")

RunWait("daemon.exe -unmount 0")
RunWait("daemon.exe -mount 0, " & """" & $iso & """")

;Replace following with the appropriate game exe to run
Run("C:\Windows
otepad.exe")

#10

Your existing documents, shared document, kids documents & Program files directories currently only total 15GB. There really isn’t much point to allocating 50GB to Shared documents, 50GB to user documents & then 50GB to program files, it’s just going to end up wasted space.

I agree with breaking up the documents, program files & windows partitions, just the sizing seems a tad extreme.

If you just have to ensure your kids can’t access your documents, you can set them as users rather than administrators. Or “make your documents private” using the windows options. I don’t recommend the private documents option because if the system gets pooched, the documents are difficult to recover.

MS Office has a “briefcase” feature for this.

Wireless 802.11G is about 1/4 the speed of a wired network. And then you can get disconnects. Only use this if you have to.

Shared documents still doesn’t need it’s own partition & drive letter.

Yes. But if you are burning, your Burner will be running at UDMA33, and your HD at UDMA66/133 (please confirm your 30GB HD’s speed).
It’ll slow down everything. Which is why I suggest that the (slow) optical drives are lumped together.

If you didn’t have the second optical drive, I’d recommend lumping the old HD with the burner :wink:

Nero will cache to a temporary folder (on your old 30GB HD hint, hint) if you tell it to. You can also do it directly.
Given that you plan to put all your stuff on your OS HD, I’d suggest caching to minimise the time the PC is churning your OS HD.


#11

debro:
All good points. I’m pretty sure that the best my mobo can muster is 66. Since I posted last, I’ve been in the BIOS and everywhere I looked, I kept seeing “UDMA 4.”

I’m not really going to be doing that much burning with this machine, so the discussion is mostly academic.

Thanks for the info on the command line interface of Daemon, CyberSlug. That would make it more hands-off for my wife and me, although I think the GameJackal would also be easier and probably the games would come up faster than mounting a drive every time you start a game. The other concern with the Daemon solution is if there were problems if I don’t unmount. I would certainly put it into the script, but what if the kids crash the game or the whole PC… the mount could remain, no?

My current problem is that I have successfully installed XP (had to load 98 first and then XP because my version is an Upgrade), but I cannot see what’s on the 30G disk. I have the imporatant files on CD-R’s, but it’s much easier to copy them disk-to-disk. I see the 30G in the Computer Management> Storage, but it has no drive assigned. I think it’s a basic disk, not a dynamic, but maybe I’m wrong. The 30G was drive C: and I’ve read where dynamic drives retain their drive number, so there would obviously be a conflict. A conflict is a likely possibility, because the boot now takes a long time, as if something needed to time out. It takes something like a full minute to see the desktop. Another problem is that I’ve only got 127G of the 160G drive. I saw a lot of solutions on ExpertsExchange.com where I have an account, but the simplest is just to format the remaining 40G or so as a different partition.

Thanks again.

korz


#12

Mounts will remain until you
a) Mount a new image to that Virtual Drive.
b) Specifically unmount the image.
c) Image moves, is deleted, or the logical drive letter changes.

Boot off the update CD & it will ask for proof. Then insert the win98 CD.
Installing win98, then XP over the top is asking for problems.

It’s a basic disk. WinXP cannot boot from a dynamic disk.
Right click on the 30G partition & select “Assign Drive letter”.

This is a common problem with large HD’s. The bios can only directly access 128GB’s. Windows however can see that it’s a larger disc & is addressing it as such.
Update your bios, otherwise you will have serious issues.