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Paladin77

A few tips Guide to a Successful Burn!

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@ Mods Feel Free to move this topic the appropriate Section if necessary

 

I've been hanging around for a while now reading all sorts of issues faced by many of the users of this great tool and wondering why is this happening only to them despite of recommending this software to many many of my friends co workers and haven't received a single complaint regarding what it can do.

 

I searched around the forums and read many of the solutions posted by the apt and capable staff of this forum and will try to summarize and add a few tips of my own hoping it would abolish all the issues others are facing. So lets start Shall we :)

 

1. Use Decent High quality Media: I can personally guarantee that 90% of your issues will disappear if you push a few more bucks from your piggy banks and invest in better quality media, trust me on this it will save you the hassle, frustration and your money by having less coasters. So Where and how to get Decent Media? Refer to the Media section here to find the best media available to you. Also check the Media ID (our cool imgburn natively supports this feature; you can find Media ID through program interface so you don't need to download extra software to know your Media ID) and refer to the following article: http://www.digitalfaq.com/reviews/dvd-media.htm to avoid counterfeited and find best quality media by Media ID.

 

Remember Its a combined drive/Media combination. So If you use an old drive it might not be compatible with the disc you're using even if its considered decent and hence I personally recommend (and I think LUK agrees with me) Verbatims (Made in Singapore) which are are best media out there as they support most drives old and new.

 

2. Use your Drive/Media to your advantage: I know that in our modern times we like to buy things plug it in and use it instantly (the working out of the box experience) and I can't fault you on that. But won't it be better if you invest a few minutes of your time to check the specs of your drive and media to see what it can or cannot do?!

The reason I am saying this because I've seen many strange practices when burning discs that leads to coasters, errors and other undesired outcomes which are blamed either on discs or imgburn so let me put those OLD WIVES' tales to rest:

 

SLOWER BURNING IS NOT ALWAYS BETTER: Many of us don't mind waiting for around 55 minutes while burning a DVD at 1X thinking it would result in a quality in burn when in fact they are torturing the drive by forcing it to slow down from its manufacturer designed speeds as well as forcing the disc to write at a speed that is almost considered obsolete now hence giving rise to many writing errors that may render the disc unusable and resulting in a coaster. I mean for the love of.... you get yourself a brand new drive that can write at 22X for instance and you use it to write a disc at 1X. You don't see me going at 30 mph in my aunt's Ferrari 456 GT; instead I get myself a court date for excessive speeding and reckless endangerment :P

The newer drives and newer discs can write flawlessly at faster speeds; so as long as you're using a decent drive and media you should have no problems. The ONLY time I would recommend you using a slower speed is if you're using JUNK media and I certainly don't recommend 1X as a speed. Only reduce the writing speed to HALF max. speed supported by the media e.g if you have an 8X max DVD junk media set writing speed on 4X.

 

Trying to write at a speed NOT supported by Media or Drive: What?! Don't blame me or LUK or imgburn if the manufacturer of your drive has set a minimum write speed for your drive or your media. Imgburn is merely a software that feeds the drive with a set of commands to achieve a successful burn. It can only work within the limitations specified by the device manufacturer. I mean if you want different speed support from your drive I am pretty sure that can be achieved via drive firmware not imgburn. Same concept goes for Media. Buy a Media that can support your desired speed.

 

Can never write on Maximum speed All through: Believe it or not the Drive cannot start writing at the maximum designated speed. Again blame physics for that (you have to accelerate first to reach any speed). If you believe your drive is slow despite of decent media and recent firmware then you should enable your DMA: http://forum.digital-digest.com/showthread...;threadid=44808 and try not to use your computer extensively while burning to provide more memory for burning.

 

3. Update your Drive Firmware: This is quite self explanatory. If you buy yourself a decent Drive, your manufacturer isn't going to leave you to dry in the wind. He will release firmware updates to support more media types, more speeds and fix bugs in previous versions. Be sure to check your drive periodically for firmware updates (again our lovely imgburn has a shortcut to firmwarehq.com where you can find firmware updates). Needless to say download only the firmware for your drive, do not interrupt the update process, update the drive with no disc in the drive, reboot ONLY after the update is successful.

 

4. Other Tips: Those are other few minor tips I recommend for an optimal burning experience:

 

Update your device drivers, BIOS, enable DMA, OS updates and patches etc: Well although Imgburn is more than capable to work flawlessly on legacy systems as old as windows 95 if there is any degradation or failure in the operation of imgburn most probably it is due to generalized degradation in system performance.

 

Avoid using the computer extensively while burning: Although we like the luxury of having dual,quad and soon hexacore core rigs giving us the ability to multitask I still recommend waiting for a few minutes and giving imgburn enough memory to burn successfully.

 

Please use the Verify Option: I mean its there for a reason, with a few more minutes after the burn the verify option checks the disc entirely against the image that was written. Saves you the hassle of manual testing or expecting unpleasant surprises due to error-ed burn.

 

Remove or Replace or DISABLE interfering programs: There are many programs that will interfere with imgburn and other authoring tools' operation. Imgburn displays a warning for you if one of those are detected e.g SPTD driver used by Alcohol 120% and Daemon tools made by duplex secure is known to cause detrimental drop in drive performance in SOME systems. So if you have any of those I recommend disabling them before commencing a burn project or better yet find a better alternative e.g Virtual CloneDrive by ElaborateBytes and Slysoft is a great alternative freeware to Daemon tools that has no interfering effect.

 

Update Imgburn: Although quite obvious but from what I've seen many seem to miss checking the main page. Update your burning program for extra features, bug fixes, performance fixes and the list goes on for the reasons why you should update imgburn.

 

Experiment with Media: In addition to getting better and decent Media experiment with each of those HQ media to see which will work best for your drive. Once you've found it stick with it.

 

I hope this whole or part of this post was helpful to you to achieve a carefree successful burning. Other Members and staff please feel free to add more and more tips :)

 

Any comments or Criticisms are welcomed

Paladin77

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A good idea and generally good points. Here a few remarks, if I may.

 

Update your device drivers, BIOS, enable DMA, OS updates and patches etc: Well although Imgburn is more than capable to work flawlessly on legacy systems as old as windows 95 if there is any degradation or failure in the operation of imgburn most probably it is due to generalized degradation in system performance.

The way I see it few drivers affect burning performance. These are mostly IDE and SATA drivers in my opinion. In the first case I'd advise not to install any drivers whatsoever. Use Microsoft's buil-in drivers instead. SATA drivers might be updated if they are required for proper operation of SATA controller in the first place and there are some issues. Otherwise, if performance is already satisfactory, I don't think it's all that important to update drivers.

BIOS should only be updated if there is some kind of major issue with burning which does or might originate from the BIOS. It, however should be left alone in any other case, which is almost always since such cases are rare in my opinion. A good rule to follow concerning the BIOS: if it isn't broken, don't fix it. Kind of like the drivers situation but to a much greater extent.

DMA should actually be enabled by default so there isn't really any need for that. Perhaps the controller could be uninstalled and then the system rebooted (as described in the FAQ section) IF there are problems with burning even when no other programs are running.

OS updates don't really have much say in this. They are mostly, important to security.

 

Avoid using the computer extensively while burning: Although we like the luxury of having dual,quad and soon hexacore core rigs giving us the ability to multitask I still recommend waiting for a few minutes and giving imgburn enough memory to burn successfully.

It's not the processor that's the problem. It's the hard disk that's always striving to catch up with the rest of the system hardware. The hard disk has been the general bottleneck of a computer system for QUITE some time. And it's getting more and more noticeable since different hardware evolves at a different pace. When we look at the evolution pace of all the hardware that has anything to do with performance it's the hard drive by far that's at the tail. Hard drives haven't evolved nearly as much as any other hardware component in terms of speed. Well, there are 10 000 RPM drives and there is also RAID but these are hardly mainstream and beyond the average user's reach (unlike other rather powerful hardware), due to very bad capacaty/price ratio and increased complexity and price, respectively. Actually even then the hard drive would be the bottleneck, it's just going be less noticeable.

So it's basically the I/O tasks that should be avoided: copying/moving, extracting, scanning for malware, etc. Bascially anything that makes the hard drive work a lot. CPU intensive tasks aren't much of a problem. You can encode a video/audio (which is a very CPU intensive process usually) and have no issues burning whatsoever, because then it's the CPU that does the work, whereas the hard drive has an easy time and can supply the data for burning quickly enough.

 

 

Perhaps a tip to defragment the hard drive from time to time can be added. For example once a month or something like that. Depends how much activity there is on the hard drive.

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Please bear with me, as I'm a novice at DVD manipulation. How can I know what DVD drive I'm using, in order to check for firmware updates? It's simply part of my laptop (HP Compaq Notebook Presario). I've had the laptop for 2 1/2 years, so it's possible there IS a firmware update out there. Thanks, Susan

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Very Very Good point Night Raven, HDDs has always been the bottleneck of evolution of system performance and as u said 10k rpms drive as well as questionable SSD hasn't added much to the scene. Defragmantation is a good tip ESPECIALLY if user still uses the good ole' FAT32 filing system in the drive.

 

Also as to the driver's updating Night Raven, I agree with you in the point that if its not broken don't fix it. That remarks and tip were directed mostly to those who use legacy systems. Newer Microsoft OSs have better driver compatibilities and installs the correct and latest drivers for you.

 

So Generally here is a tip: Cleanup and maintain your system regularly. Defragment your HDD (especially system partition). Also if you're using Vista or later and do not search alot inside your HDD much disable the HDD indexing service.

 

Susan Welcome to the Forum: You can find the your Drive type from the device manager and then check for firmware updates www.firmwarehq.com. Alternatively an easier way to automate the search is to use imgburn to do it for you.

 

1. Start imgburn

2. Choose a mode that shows your drive e.g Read mode (create image files from disc) or Write mode (write image file to disc).

3. Right click on your drive which should be displayed over there.

4. Click check for firmware update.

5. Press Ok on the prompt that appears after you checked what firmware you have (you should have active internet connection).

6. Check in the Website if there is in fact a firmware update or not (sometimes it displays same firmware).

7. If there is a firmware update. Download it and save it on your HDD.

8. Remove any discs from the drive close any running programs before you run the update.

9. Run the update and WAIT till its over (Warning: DO NOT INTERRUPT THIS PROCESS or your your drive will be bricked).

10. Once Done Reboot your computer.

 

Note: Laptop burners rarely have firmware updates. Also check the HP site if there is firmware update for your Compaq laptop. My personal suggestion is using laptop burners for movie or game or quality burns is futile as they suck. Get yourself an external USB drive or an internal IDE drive with a USB enclosure to ensure yourself a quality burn.

 

Regards,

Paladin77

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Susan;

 

Start ImgBurn and right click on the drive, click on properties and go from there.

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!st. Thanks to all here! New here & love IMGburn!

 

Spinner, that was quick & simple. I have 2 burners & 1 firmware is OK, the other did not show on the list. There were 4 firmware updates listed though, so is it safe to update to the latest one? In other words bypassing the other 3?

 

I just know this is a stupid question! sorry

 

Mahalo!

Rich

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so is it safe to update to the latest one? In other words bypassing the other 3?

 

I Never had a problem doing just that, but, if you're unsure then just go through the steps upgrading each new one until you're at the latest and greatest. I do not believe that you can hurt the drive either way as long as the firmware is from the manufacturer and not a tweaked one. :thumbup:

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