Friday, November 18, 2005

Lost Disks No More

Here at the office we have a constant problem, people "borrowing" install CDs and never returning them. I got so sick of this phenomena that I started making ISOs of CDs and placed them on a linux box running Samba. CD ISO images can be "mounted" as file systems in Linux using loop devices. For a full explanation of this process click on this link. Combining this capability with Samba (basically creating a Microsoft Windows network share) you should be able to tell people to install from your CD server instead of handing out the disks.

For those pesky people that want a CD you should be able to just tell them to burn the ISOs from the CD server to a CD with Nero or Easy CD Creator. If a installation program absolutely requires that the disk be in a "CD Drive" use a tool like Daemon-Tools (see picture below). This basically mounts a ISO image on your Windows machine and emulates a CD drive. With these tips you should be set to stop losing those precious install CDs. Viva la installacion!

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