BURN  FILES  WITH  CD / DVD  BURNING  SOFTWARE

Continuing from the previous section, this section will teach you how to Burn (Copy) Folders/Files onto a CD/DVD Disc using AShampoo's Burning Studio FREE. It does not matter if you do not have this software because I will be showing you standard features that are in most, if not all, standard burning softwares.


Begin by double clicking on your burning software's desktop icon or START Menu menu-item. In this example on the AShampoo Burning Studio FREE desktop icon. This should bring up your software's main window which normally displays the software's categorized burning options. Typical categories include DATA (Create/Copy Data CD/DVD), VIDEO (Create Video DVD), PHOTOS (Create SlideShow CD/DVD), AUDIO (Create/Copy Audio CD) and BACKUP (Copy A CD/DVD) as well as having Tools (i.e. Disk Labeller, Eraser and Ripper). It depends on the money you spent for the software. Many computers these days come with built-in CD/DVD Burning software and therefore may be limited in features.

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.0 - Double click on your Burning Software's desktop icon to continue

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.1 - The main window with the Burning options split into categories

Ashampoo Burning Studio FREE is aimed at the beginner and therefore keeps its categorised burning options less technical and less complicated. The individual options for category can be seen by hovering over the category (Fig 1.1 above). Its categorised burning options are as follows.

Burn Data

Allows you to create a new Data CD/DVD, using a blank cd/dvd. A Data CD/DVD is normally a cd/dvd that contains a mixture of folders and files - Music files, Photo files, Microsoft Office files, Website Pages and so on. The data is not played directly into a MP3 Player or CD Player though because it is normally software related data (i.e. any burnt data such as Microsoft Office excel and word files will need to be opened by Microsoft Office software or at least by double clicking on a file to open its associated software).

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Another burning option in this category is the option to Update (add to) an existing (already burnt) cd/dvd. For example: If you have already recorded (burnt) files onto a cd/dvd you can record onto that cd/dvd again provided you have enough space left on that cd/dvd and have not fully closed that cd/dvd. Meaning: Each time you record something with Ashampoo Burning Studio 2015 it is known as a session (like a recording session in a recording studio). Normally cd/dvd burning software is set up to allow multiple sessions (Multi-Session) but this is something you would have to check in the software's settings beforehand.

NOTE WELL - The AShampoo UPDATE feature updates your cd/dvd by making a copy of the previous session's data before adding your new data to the current session. So when it comes to burning the current session's data, which also contains the previous session's data, the previous session is automatically unavailable/unviewable. You will only see the current session's data on the cd/dvd. If you remove any data from the current session, before it is burnt, such as a folder from the old session that data will not be retrievable unless you add it back again. So to clarify. If the previous session displays as files 1, 2, 3 and 4 and you then want to burn a new session with file 5 all is well. Your cd/dvd will display as files 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 once file 5 has been added/burnt. However, if you delete file 3 and then add file 5 your newly burnt cd/dvd will display as files 1, 2, 4 and 5 with file 3 missing/deleted.

Backup + Restore

Allows you to create a backup cd/dvd whereby its data (folders and files) can be restored later, if your computer has problems or you deleted a file by accident. It is not as powerful as a dedicated 'backup and resore' utility or Windows 10's own backup and restore feature, so I would not really use Ashampoo Burning Studio FREE for these purposes.

Music

Allows you to create a new Audio CD, using a blank cd. The blank cd can either be made into a proper Audio CD that you play through a CD Player for example or it can be made into a Music Data CD whereby the audio files (i.e. downloaded music files) can only be played through a computer or mp3 player for example.

You can also Rip music under this Music category. Rip means to make a copy of a proper audio cd's soundtracks and turn those copied soundtracks into .mp3 files for example, so that you can play those .mp3 soundtracks (music files) on a computer or mp3 player for example. Therefore, with Burn or Rip you can create an audio cd from .mp3 files and create .mp3 files from an audio cd.

Multi-Session is not available with Burn Or Rip Music. On other software this could be possible. It is possible with Nero Express for example.

Movie

The movie options are similar to the music options just mentioned above in that you can create a Movie DVD from a VIDEO_TS folder (containing .vob, .ifo and .bup files), a Video CD (VCD) from compatible MPEG-1 files (.mpg) files, a Super Video CD (SVCD) from compatible MPEG-2 files (.mpg or .vob) or create a data disc (cd/dvd) for storing other types of movie file on. In the latter case you could use the Burn Data option instead.

Copy A CD/DVD

Allows you to make an exact copy of a cd/dvd, regardless of its data type (i.e. Data DVD, Music CD and so on).

Disc Images

Allows you to create or burn a Disc Image (i.e. ISO) file, which is basically one file that contains a collection of files. Similar to a .zip file but not necessary compressed. An ISO (disc image) file is normally available for download, so that the person downloading it can simply burn it back into individual files again instead of having to download many individual files.

ISO files, when burnt, can also make a cd bootable (automatically start); which is particularly good if the author has made a menu program for the individual files. The average beginner will probably never need to use an ISO (disc image) file, but the feature is there in case. Saying this, if you want to install the Linux Ubuntu operating system on your computer, alongside Windows 10 for example, it normally has to be download as a .iso file.

An example of a bootable disk (FOR EXPLANATION PURPOSES ONLY) is the Windows 98 (and Windows ME) bootable floppy disk that allows a computer engineer to run certain programs in order to partition a hard drive, repair parts of Windows or reinstall Windows. This kind of bootable floppy disk can also be used to create a bootable image for a bootable cd/dvd. This would require a floppy disk drive and a floppy disk of course, which in 2015 are almost obsolete in modern countries, but theoretically still possible to create; with software that allows you to create this kind of bootable cd/dvd (i.e. Nero Express). In other words, you could download an older verson of a cd/dvd burner software to perform this task.

Advanced Functions

Allows you to format (erase/wipe/blank) a RW (Re-Writeable) cd/dvd such as a CD-RW or DVD+RW. A cd/dvd that is marked as RW means it can be formatted (erased/wiped/blanked) so that it can be used again. In 2015 cds and dvds are so cheap I can not really see the point of rw discs; simply burn the data again onto another disc rather than erase an existing disc. RW discs were great years ago when cds and dvds were very expensive, but these days.....

CREATE  A  DATA  DISC

Getting back to the cd burning, specifically with AShampoo Burning Studio FREE. When the main window appears (Fig 1.1 above) continue by hovering the mouse pointer over its BURN DATA category to make its options appear (Fig 1.2 below) and then click on the NEW DISC option. Doing so will bring up the Burn Files And Folders window (Fig 1.3), so that you can start adding folders and files to your cd burning compilation.

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.2 - Hover over the BURN DATA category and then select the NEW DISC option to continue

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.3 - Click on the ADD button so that you can start adding folders and/or files to your cd/dvd burning compilation

The Burn Files And Folders window allows you to add folders and files to your cd burning compilation by either clicking on the ADD button or by dragging folders and/or files into its white display area (main window). The Drag & Drop method (not exampled here) is exactly the same as described and exampled in the Copy & Paste, Drag & Drop sections of this website. In this example though I will show you the ADD method only.

After clicking on the ADD button (Fig 1.3 above) the ADD FILES AND FOLDERS file requester will appear (below), allowing you to select the folders and/or files you want in your cd/dvd compilation. If you want to select files from a folder (i.e. pictures files from the PICTURES folder) you must navigate the file requester to the folder storing the files (i.e. navigate to the PICTURES folder). And if you want to select the entire folder (i.e. the PICTURES folder), with its files inside it as well of course, you must navigate the file requester to that folder's parent folder (i.e. navigate to your USER folder (i.e. JOHN) so that you can select the PICTURES folder).

Use the blue (back) arrow CD Burning Software Explained button to navigate to the previous folder visited and the up-folder CD Burning Software Explained button to go up one folder level (up the folder hierarchy).

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.4 - You can change the file requester's view (display area) so it displays LARGE ICONS (Thumbnails)

With photo files you may need to change the file requester's view (display area) in order to view photo folders and files as large or extra large icons (thumbnails). In Fig 1.4 above I have clicked on the VIEW MENU drop-down menu so that I can change the file requester's view to LARGE ICONS, by then clicking on the LARGE ICONS menu-item. If I could not see the photos properly I would of clicked on the EXTRA LARGE ICONS menu-item instead. These views are not from AShampoo Burning Studio FREE, they are the standard folder views of Windows 10.

Once the view had been changed (Fig 1.5 below) I then selected the photo folder called Renovation, the photo file called John_French.jpg and the photo file called John_Glasses.jpg to be included in my cd/dvd compilation before clicking on the ADD button.

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.5 - Select the folder(s) and/or file(s) you want to include in your cd/dvd compilation and then click on the ADD button

With the above example I could of just clicked on the FINISH button to go to the next phase of the burning process but, as this is an example, I decided to add more folders and files to my cd compilation (below). It was the same process as just explained above with the only difference being that I navigated the file requester to the DOCUMENTS folder before selecting some additional folders and files.

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.6 - Select more folders and files for your cd/dvd compilation, if need be.

Each time you make a selection and then click on the ADD button the file requester briefly disappears so that your selection can be added/updated to the cd/dvd compilation. When the file requester returns you have the choice of ADDing more folders and files to your cd/dvd compilation or clicking on the FINISH button to go to the next phase of the burning process.

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.7 - After selecting folders and files for your compilation click on the NEXT button to continue

After clicking on the file requester's FINISH button the main window (above) displays the folders and files added to your cd/dvd compilation so far. If you want to ADD more folders and files to your cd/dvd compilation, even at this stage, you can do. You can also remove folders and files from your cd compilation by selecting the folder(s) and/or file(s) you want to remove before clicking on the REMOVE button. When you are truly satisfied with your cd/dvd compilation click on the NEXT button to continue.

One thing you might want to do before clicking on the NEXT button is to rename the cd/dvd title. It always defaults to My Files when creating a new compilation but in this example I have renamed it Keep Safe, by clicking inside the TITLE edit box and editing My Files.


The Blue Gauge towards the bottom of the main window indicates and estimates the number of MegaBytes (MB) needed for your compilation. If your folders and files take up more than 700 MB (the maximum space for a cd compilation) then you will need a dvd instead of a cd for that extra, needed, space; and therefore will need to create a dvd compilation instead. Don't worry though as Ashampoo Burning Studio FREE will know if you have a blank cd or blank dvd in the DVD RW DRIVE.

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.8 - Click on the WRITE CD button to continue

After clicking on the NEXT button (Fig 1.7 above) AShampoo Burning Studio FREE checks the DVD RW DRIVE to make sure there is a cd/dvd inside it, that has enough space on it to burn your cd/dvd compilation. If all is well you will see a Green Tick inside the main window (above) and the WRITE button will not be faded out, otherwise you will see a Red X if there is not enough space on the cd/dvd or if there is an error in general. So assuming all is well, click on the WRITE button (i.e. WRITE CD button) to begin the actual burning process.

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.9 - Prebuffering - putting the data into memory sections (buffers), ready for burning.

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.10 - Writing the data onto the dvd (Burning/Copying/Recording the data, from memory onto the disc)

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.11 - Verify that the data has been burnt onto the disc correctly

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.12 - The data (dvd compilation) has been burnt (copied/recorded) onto the disc successfully

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 1.13 - Do you want to record the data again or EXIT?

When the burning process has finished you are given two important, but optional, options before clicking on the EXIT button. The first important, but often overlooked, option is the chance to verify the data. Clicking on VERIFY THE CD (or VERIFY THE DVD) double checks the cd/dvd tracks to make sure the data has been recorded (burnt) without errors. The second, less, important option is the chance to burn the data (cd/dvd compilation) again without the need to create the compilation. Clicking on WRITE SAME CD AGAIN (or WRITE SAME DVD AGAIN) re-burns the data using the data from memory that is usually stored as an image file for this exact re-writing purpose. If you do not need any of these options simply click on the EXIT button to complete the whole burning process.

BURNING  OPTIONS

If you want to set up personal burning options before creating and burning a cd/dvd compilation you can click on the ADVANCED OPTIONS button on the main window (Fig 1.8 above), before writing/burning the data. Any options set (ticked) here will be permanently set (ticked/switched on) until you clear (untick/switch off) them again.

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 2.0 - Tick the options you want to use generally before clicking on the OK button

As you can see, the Options window has tick options on it that allow you to verify the data, finalize the disc (cd/dvd) and so on. Here is a brief outline of what each one does.

VERIFY WRITTEN FILES AND FOLDERS AFTER RECORDING

This is the same as VERIFY THE CD, as described above. Once a cd/dvd compilation has been burnt the cd/dvd tracks and data are scanned for errors. Verifying a cd/dvd is good if your data is important. Otherwise if it is just casual data, whereby you trust your cd/dvd recorder and burning software anyway, there is usually no need to verify. Especially if you could get hold of the data at any time, because you have a copy of it on your hard drive for example.

FINALIZE THE CD/DVD

FINALIZE means you can not Multi-Session (re-record on) a cd/dvd. Or put another way. Once this session's data (compilation) has been burnt you will not be able to burn any more data on this cd/dvd again. This is a good option if you are making a data cd/dvd for a friend for example whereby once their data is on the cd/dvd there is no need to record anything else onto that cd/dvd. It acts as a "Do Not Over-Write" safety precaution.

BURN CD/DVD IN "AT ONCE" DISC MODE

This option puts AShampoo Burning Studio FREE in AT ONCE mode, which means your data can be burnt in one go instead of burning each track individually. For Data CDs this is not much of a difference because they only contain a single data track. However, if AT ONCE mode is clear (unticked/switched off) for Audio CDs there may be very short periods of noise between the individual audio tracks. Therefore, it is recommended you use AT ONCE mode when burning Audio CDs.

COPY ALL DATA TO HARD DISK IMAGE FIRST

This option is good if you have an old, slow, computer. It saves your cd/dvd compilation to your hard drive first, as an image file, and then burns it to the cd/dvd one piece at a time (from image to memory, memory to cd/dvd). If this option is clear (unticked/switched off) the data is written straight to memory instead of from the image file.

The above concentrated mostly on a dvd and general data (Data DVD) but the above applies equally to a cd, a music cd and so on. In other words, you ADD to your compilation in the same way as above for a cd or dvd. To burn an Audio CD for example simply select NEW DISC >> CREATE AUDIO CD and then start ADDing your audio files. The guage will tell you how many Minutes, as opposed to MegaBytes, you have used as you ADD audio files. Once your audio compilation has been created click on the WRITE button to burnt it.

CLASSIC  FILE  REQUESTER

By default AShampoo Burning Studio FREE uses a new file requester that, for some strange reason(s), does not show a large icon or thumbnail view. To switch this feature off and therefore revert back to the classic file requester, as exampled above, you need to go to the SETTING menu, select the GENERAL OPTIONS menu-item and then tick the option called ENABLE OLD FILE SELECTION DIAOGUE from the General Options window that appears.

CD Burning Software Explained

Fig 2.1 - Tick the ENABLE OLD FILE SELECTION DIAOGUE option to enable the classic file requester

If you want FREE, Basic (No Frills), Burning Software you can not go wrong with AShampoo Burning Studio FREE or Nero MediaHome (16.0.03300). And if you only burn discs occasionally you could also download a Free, 30 Days, Trial burning software. Many of them are full versions but for 30 days only. After that they may become limited in features and/or functionality or just stop working altogether. Either way, you should have burnt your discs by then. A good reason to backup your data if nothing else.