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Save A Disc As A Dmg File With Disk Utility

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8/19/2013 9:04:58 AM

Take a CD or DVD and save it to your Mac as a dmg file using its built-in software

Difficulty: Intermediate

Time needed: 15 minutes

Whether you’re moving to a new Mac without an optical drive or simply want to clear out some discs that are cluttering up your desk, converting CDs and DVDs to dmg files is a very smart move. A dmg file on your desktop will behave just like a physical drive, for example, an external hard drive, flash drive or disc. So, if you have a new MacBook Pro or iMac you can carry on using your old discs even though you don’t have a drive to insert them in.

Converting a disc to a dmg file is done via the Disk Utility app which is built into OS X. It is a good way to get a disk’s content permanently on your system. As mentioned it’s the best way of keeping old discs on new machines without an optical drive, or for sharing programs online that you may have developed yourself back in the day.

Converting a disc to a dmg file is done via the Disk Utility app which is built into OS X. It is a good way to get a disk’s content permanently on your system.

Converting a disc to a dmg file is done via the Disk Utility app which is built into OS X. It is a good way to get a disk’s content permanently on your system.

Create a dmg image

Looking at the options available to you

Size: Go to File>New Blank Image and you will see a host of options appear. They include the ability to select a custom size and the drop-down will suggest different media sizes

Knowledge base – Backups: One good reason to create a dmg file from a CD is to back up the program that is on it. This means if you ever lose the CD (or DVD), you needn’t worry because you have it stored safely on your hard drive. Having up-to-date backups is always essential, but do make sure you keep any product numbers to hand just in case.

Encryption: It is possible to encrypt your dmg file. A good one to try is 256-bit AES encryption which may be slower than many others, but it is secure

Create: When you tap Create, you will be prompted for a secure password and asked to verify it. This way you will have a secure dmg image. The password is needed for mounting it

Image format: If you want to be able to add and remove files on your disk, as we will, then ensure that the image format is selected as a read/write disk image

Step-by-step: Disk Utility Create dmg files from CD/DVD

1.    Open Finder

The first step is to launch the Disk Utility application which you can find by opening Finder and then navigating to your Applications folder.

Open Finder

2.    Launch Disk Utility

Find the Disk Utility app. Double-click this icon and it will launch on your Mac. A new window will open and it will contain lots of CD disk options.

Launch Disk Utility

3.    Familiarize yourself

You will see the main interface. To the left is a list of available disks and this includes the hard drive and any memory cards. Icons run across the top.

Familiarize yourself

4.    Insert a disk

Grab a CD and place it in your Mac. This will show up on the left and it will also call up a list of options in the main window when you highlight it.

Grab a CD and place it in your Mac.

5.    New image

Now, with the CD highlighted, tap New Image from the top and a pop-down menu will appear. Write a file name which best identifies the content.

New image

6.    Fill in options

You can decide whether or not you wish the image format to be compressed and also whether you want to encrypt the dmg file you’re creating.

Fill in options

7.    Select, save, create

Now select where on your hard drive you wish the dmg file to save and when you are ready, simply tap the Save button and the file will be created for you.

Select, save, create

8.    Access the file

The file will take a few minutes to create. If you wish to access the file in the future, you can open Disk Utility and select the dmg file that you have created.

Access the file

9.    Burn the file

If you want to burn the file to another disk, then eject the original CD or DVD and insert a blank one. Then click Burn, highlight the file and Burn again.

Burn the file

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