Windows XP's integrated CD burner is powered by the Roxio engine but lacks the familiar Easy CD Creator interface. There is no CD Burner icon on the desktop or in the start menu. So where is this promised CD burner? There are two answers, depending on if you want to burn audio or data CD's.

To burn data CDs

Open a folder. Look at the folder options on the left of your screen. You should see an option to Copy All Items to CD or Copy to CD, depending on your folder view. You can also right-click a file or folder and choose Send To and then CD drive. I appreciate that XP has made it as easy to drop files to a CD as it is a Zip disk. It does not copy the files immediately. Instead, it places them into a repository and waits for further instruction on when and where to burn the CD. Now, place a blank CD into your CD drive or navigate to your CD drive in My Computer, and choose to write the files to a CD.


To burn music CDs

The Windows Media Player was always a monstrosity, and now it now includes a new function -- CD burning. Select a song in your My Documents folder, and choose Copy to Audio CD from the folder options on the left. Surprise! Up pops the Windows Media Player, waiting for you to choose Copy to CD. Hit the record button, and have a good time.


Limitations of the incorporated CD burner

You cannot create bootable CDs with the Windows XP CD burner, nor can you create a CD from an image (like a .iso file). If you want this functionality, you need to install your favorite CD burning software. Don't try to install Easy CD Creator 5 just yet -- Windows XP won't let you.


Roxio will have XP patches available on their website soon, but only for their latest edition of CD creator. Roxio will not support Easy CD Creator 3.X and 4.X for Windows XP, and the user will be required to purchase the upgrade to Easy CD Creator 5 Platinum.


Windows XP does not have a CD burning interface, but it has CD burning artfully integrated into the operating system. However, third-party CD burning software is still necessary for those who want to burn more than the occasional audio CD.

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Vishnu vardhan Reddy Boda is Tech Blogger and Software Engineer.

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