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How to use your CD writer under Linux

First, you need a compatible CD burner. Linux works with SCSI CD-burners, IDE CD-burners (through ide-scsi emulation), and USB CD burners. In all cases, the device appears as a SCSI device. If you can see your device with the command 'cdrecord -scanbus', then you are ready to burn. If so, skip to section 2.

Section 1: Configuring your CD writer

Often, people have a IDE cd-writer, but don't have the ide-scsi emulation turned on. This is best done by editing the /etc/lilo.conf on your computer, and adding an entry to your current boot option:
image=/boot/vmlinuz-STD-current
  label=linux
  read-only
  root=/dev/device
  append="hdb=ide-scsi"

(NOTE: this is just an example, your root partition and CD-writer device might be different. If you have any problems identifying or configuring your CD-writer, contact help@cs.cmu.edu).
Once you have configured lilo, re-run /sbin/lilo to install the new bootloader, and reboot.

Section 2: Using cdrecord

The output of 'cdrecord -scanbus' will look something like this:
# cdrecord -scanbus
Cdrecord 1.9 (i686-pc-linux-gnu) Copyright (C) 1995-2000 Jörg Schilling
Linux sg driver version: 3.1.22
Using libscg version 'schily-0.1'
scsibus0:
        0,0,0     0) 'TOSHIBA ' 'DVD-ROM SD-R1202' '1020' Removable CD-ROM
        0,1,0     1) *
        0,2,0     2) *
        0,3,0     3) *
        0,4,0     4) *
        0,5,0     5) *
        0,6,0     6) *
        0,7,0     7) *

The CD writer is the device labeled '0,0,0' in this example. You can now use cdrecord to burn an audio or data CD, using that device number. Here's an example of how to burn an ISO image to a cd, using cdrecord:
# cdrecord -v speed=2 dev=0,0,0 -data cdimage.iso
Read the man page for 'cdrecord' for more options and examples.

Section 3: Making ISO images

You may want to generate a CD image containing data. You can do this with the comand 'mkisofs'.
       mkisofs  -r   -o cd_image   private_collection/
                     `---------'   `-----------------'
                          |               |
                 write output to   take directory as input
You can then use cdrecord to write cd_image to a CD.

Additional information

The following off-site links will open in a new browser window:

The Linux CD-Writing Howto
is a good place to find more information about writing CDs under linux.