How to Copy Operating System Installation Files to CD

By Joshua Benjamin

If you're going to be using a computer for any length of time, you need to familiarize yourself with the concept of "backing up" your important data. Because computers are fickle creatures and prone to crashing at the worst possible times, it is always a good idea to make duplicate copies of your important data and store it on some kind of removable media--DVDs, CDs, external hard drives. This same principle should be applied to your important discs as well, such as install discs for your favorite programs, and your operating set-up disc. Fortunately, making these copies is not difficult, providing you have the right tools.

Things You'll Need

  • Computer with at least one CD/DVD-R/RW drive
  • Blank CD
  • CD/DVD burning software

Step 1

Turn on your computer and insert your operating CD into your CD drive.

Step 2

Load your CD/DVD burning software.

Step 3

Choose to copy the CD. If you have two CD drives in your computer, you will simply need to insert a blank CD into your empty CD drive, designate that one as the destination, and start the burn process. If you do not have two CD drives, read on.

Step 4

Find the option in your burning software that allows you to write a CD to your hard drive as an image file. This will create an image file on your hard drive that can be burned onto a blank CD.

Step 5

Choose to create an image file of your operating system install CD and specify where you would like it to be located on your hard drive. Your burning software will now copy your CD to the specified location.

Step 6

Eject your operating system install CD and insert your blank CD into your CD/DVD drive.

Step 7

Return to your burning software and locate the option to write an image file to a blank CD or DVD.

Step 8

Select the image file you just created as the file you want to be burned to the blank CD.

Step 9

Click the "start" button--other names for it include the "burn" button or the "write" button--and allow your burning software to burn the image file to the blank CD. You have now successfully copied the installation files from your original CD onto a backup CD.

References & Resources