53. Burn Files on a CD or DVD

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You can burn folders and files to a CD or DVD (depending on the drive types installed on your computer) using the K3b burning software. You can create data CDs (or DVDs), create music CDs, or copy a CD. Now here's the bad news: Linux systems are set up to protect direct access to devices by users other than the root account. So, you can log on as root, burn your CDs or DVDs, and then log off; no questions asked.

If you want to configure your system so that a "regular" user can access the burn drives and configure K3b so that it works correctly (and its core executables such as cdrecord have proper access), you are talking about several tweaks and changes to file attributes and configuration files.

Commands such as chown and chmod are involved, and you have to do a fair amount of work at the command line as the root user to get things working properly. Going through all the possibilities is certainly beyond the scope of this book, and applying the "fixes" incorrectly can have dire consequences for your system. If you really have NLD administration in mind, you might want to consult NLD and Linux administration books such as Emmett Dulaney's Novell Linux Desktop 9 Administrator's Handbook (as well as some of his other publications).

Before You Begin

14 About File Commands

15 Use File Commands

46 Use Nautilus to Manage Folders

47 Browse and Open Files

48 Find Files

49 Delete Files

Open K3b

From the desktop, select Programs, Multimedia, CD Burner. The K3b program window opens. A Tip of the Day window also opens. Select Close to close the tip window.


When you use insert a burnable CD or DVD in the burner drive, a hardware detection window opens. Click Yes to start K3b. This allows you to forgo starting K3b from the menu.

Start a Project

To start a new project, select one of the project options in the lower pane of the K3b window. For example, to burn data files to a CD, select New Data CD Project.


All the project types available in K3b are similar in terms of operation; you select the project and then select the files that will be burned to the writable media (CD or DVD). In the case of music CDs, you can burn a number of audio file types including wav and MP3 files. When you select to copy a CD, the process is really just a matter of identifying the source CD and then the drive that will be used to burn the copy onto the destination CD.

Select Folders and Files

You select the folders and/or files that will be burned to the CD using the two panes in the top of the K3b window. Use the left pane to locate the folder that contains the files. Select a folder in the left pane to view its contents in the right pane. After you have located a folder or file, drag the item to the lower panel. Repeat the process as needed until you have added all the items to the lower panel that you want to burn onto the CD (or DVD).


A space counter in the lower panel tells you the amount of space still available on the CD or DVD as you drag items onto it.

Open the Burning Dialog

To open the Burning dialog box (the place where you set the burn parameters), select the Burn button in the lower right of the K3b window.

Set Burn Parameters

On the Writing tab of the Data Project dialog box, make sure that the correct burning device is selected (if you have multiple burners). You can also choose the writing mode, which is set by default to Auto. Select the Writing Mode drop-down list and select DAO (data at once), TAO (track at once), or RAW (raw data).

To select the speed for the burn, select the Speed drop-down list and select a burn speed. You also have options that can be set: On the Fly allows you to burn the data directly to the CD without a copy being made on the hard drive. The Only Create Image option burns an ISO image to your hard drive, which can be used to create a CD at a later time.

You may also want to enter descriptive information for the newly created CD including the volume name. Select the Volume Desc tab of the project's dialog box. Enter a volume name in the Volume Name box. Enter other descriptive information as required.


Burning CDs and DVDs can sometimes be more of an art than a science. You many want to simulate the burn process to test your settings (select the Simulate option on the Writing tab). In some cases, you may also have to burn through a couple of CDs or DVDs just to determine the best settings for your particular CD burning device (fortunately, CDs are relatively cheap and CD-RWs can be erased). Sometimes you are just dealing with trial and error to determine your own best settings. After you establish the settings that work best for you, save them by selecting Save User Defaults.

Burn CD

When you are ready to burn the CD (or DVD) select the Burn button on the right of the project's dialog box. The files are burned to the CD. The Writing Data dialog box shows the progress of the burn process. When the process is complete, you can close this dialog box. When you close K3b, you are given the option of saving the parameters from the CD creation session.


There is also a quick but less elegant way to burn CDs directly from the Nautilus window. Select Go and then CD Creator. Drag folders and files that you want to place on the CD onto the CD Creator window that appears. Then select File, Write to CD.


When you use removable media such as CDs, right-click on the device's icon and select Eject before removing the media. This allows the Linux system to "unmount" the media before removal. Do the same for floppies; right-click on the icon and remove them from the file system before ejecting the disk.

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    Novell Linux Desktop 9. User's Handbook
    Novell Linux Desktop 9 Users Handbook
    ISBN: 0672327295
    EAN: 2147483647
    Year: 2003
    Pages: 244
    Authors: Joe Habraken

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