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    What is an iso file? An iso is an exact image of a disk. For example you can download a iso image of any linux distro and install from that disk just as you would like a Microsoft Windows disk from the manufacturer. The .iso file does not contain files and folders like a normal file does, it only contains the necessary low-level raw data of the disk. Think of it like an unassembled toy, worthless in pieces but when put together you get a fully usable toy.

The most common way to make use of the iso image is to burn it to a CD/DVD. This isn't the same process as burning music to a disk. You will need a burning software that will “assemble” the contents of the iso onto the disk. While researching multiple forums I saw people were having the same problem, they have burned the disk but it does not do anything after that. For example one person reported that he has “downloaded an ISO file from a torrent (it was legal, don’t worry) and tried to burn it to a DVD but it wouldn’t do anything after that. I finally realized that I had to ‘burn the image’ with my burning software, not just stick the file on the CD.” This seems to be the most common problem when creating iso images, to avoid this problem I recommend using burnCDCC to create your image. It is a very basic software that will burn the raw data of a disc image from the selected file onto a blank disc. I have found this software works well and is very dependable/consistent due to the fact that it ONLY burns disk images, however any burning software will suffice (as long as it can create .iso images of course).

How to Create a .iso Disk Image Using BurnCDCC:

  • Download the software from here burncdcc .
  • The file will download as a compressed .zip folder and you will need to extract the files (Windows can do this for you or you can use third party software like 7zip to unzip the folder)
  • Start the program through the extracted .exe file
  • Choose the .iso file image you wish to burn
  • Make sure that the file you select ends in a “.iso” or the whole process will fail
  • Insert a blank disc with enough space
  • Click “Start” and wait for the image to create!

How to create an image on Linux:
    • The iso creation process for Linux varies from the process done in Windows. In my opinion, Linux makes it easier.
    • There are two ways to create an image in Linux. Command line, or GUI application.

  • Command Line/Bash:
    • Startup Linux
    • Create a file for the iso image to be extracted from in the proper directory.
    • Now run.
    • dd if=/dev/cdrom of=/tmp/cdimg1.iso

    • Make sure that a blank disk is inserted and the iso image will begin to burn.
    • This command will extract the iso image from the disk in your drive and create a file on your hard drive. The file will contain many things, most can be overlooked, the most important file is the .iso (image of the disk).

    Brasero for Linux:
    • Brasero is a tool used to burn things like data and iso images onto a disk. This tool becomes very important for Linux users because you must have some way to get an iso download onto a disk. Linux distros are just useless file downloads, until they are burned onto a disk, the proper way. I have found the best way to create iso images while running in a linux environment is to use the Brasero application. Brasero works with ease and has a very user friendly interface making for quick use. It will always check the integrity of any iso files before burning them, protecting you against downloading a bad package. Now, let’s get started.

    • Getting/Using Brasero:
      • First you are going to need to install the software
    • Open your package manager for your distro, ‘Software Center’ in Ubuntu
    • Search for ‘Brasero’ and install the pack
    • Once installed launch Brasero
    • As you can see there are many options provided by the software, we want to burn image
    • Select the ‘Burn Image’ option at the bottom of the list.
    • Once you do so a box will appear on your screen with two fields that require filling out.
    • The first box is for the .iso file and should say ‘Click here to select a disk image’. Click here and navigate to your .iso file and select it.
    • Next you need to select the media for the image to be burned to
    • By default Brasero will pick up on any media that you have inserted into your pc
    • Insert a blank disk and Brasero will automatically pick up on it and select that media for the burning process
    • If you inserted your blank disk at the beginning of the process, don’t worry it will not cause any problems, Brasero will automatically choose that media.
    • Click ‘Create Image’ and the burning process will begin
    • It will take a bit longer than a normal data disk will mostly due to the larger size, but also because Brasero has to check the integrity of the image as well.
    • The disk will begin burning, when complete you should have a fully functional disk image.
    IMG Burn Windows:
    • IMG Burner is a multi-purpose burning tool compatible with all versions of Windows. You can use this tool to create a mp3 CD or burn a movie onto a DVD. There is also an iso burning option, the desired option for this document.
    • Download
      • You can download IMG burner here at Filehippo.
      • 2.5.7 Latest version as of 11/20/12
    Using IMG Burn
    Once the program has been installed properly startup the application.
    • Select “Write image file to disc”
    • Select the file you wish to move burn to disc.
    • Select media destination for the burn.
    • Click the ‘Write’ graphic located at the bottom.
    Brian Brennan 11/20/2012