Burning a CD or DVD in Ubuntu - Adventures in Switching to Linux

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Burning a CD or DVD in Ubuntu

Every year my wife and I get calendars made with family pictures for grandparents and/or parents. We use digital photos and also scan in some older photos. Unfortunately I could not get my Memorex MEM 48U USB scanner working in Linux so I had to boot into Windows which lead to my discussion of dual booting Ubuntu and Windows. If I hadn't waited until the last minute, I likely would have spent more time on the scanner. There might be more on that issue in the future.

So after firing up Windows, scanning all the pictures and getting them all organized, I still needed to burn them to CD to take to Office Max. I rebooted into Linux figuring this would be an easy task. I looked and looked and looked for CD burning software but didn't see any pre-installed. I was a little disappointed. I fired up Add/Remove applications and installed GnomeBaker. It had 4 stars (out of 4) for popularity and "integrates well" with Gnome. No problem, not everyone wants to burn CDs.

At this point I fired up GnoneBaker and stuck in my blank CD. Up popped this message:

Oh Gnome, I'm so sorry for underestimating you! Why would I need an external CD burner when it is built into Gnome already?! Duh! After choosing "Make Data CD", I just had to create some directories and use some drag and drop to setup the content for my disc.

Then I selected my burning options. I changed the name from the default shown in the screen shot below. I generally play it safe too so I changed the disc to burn at some super low speed like 4x. I had other things to do before I headed to the store anyway. I could wait.

And then make it write the disc... (the preparing to write step took a lot longer than I expected, what was it doing?)

And there you have it. I burned a CD in Linux, so simply. After the successful burn without it, I uninstalled GnomeBurner. The GnomeBurner interfaced looked a little confusing anyway. Maybe I will install it again some other time if I want to do something more complex but until then I'll stick with the easy way.

Update: And burning an Audio CD was just as easy. Start from the same dialog when you pop in a blank disc and then up pops Serpentine to burn your audio CD.

Drag and drop in some mp3 (or other file formats too I am sure). Whoops, I added too many at first.

Start the disc burning.

And then wait a really long time. I assume this step is converting the MP3s I selected into wav files to burn to the disc. The during this process, CPU usage ramped up to a solid 50% (I have a hyperthreading P4).

And the next thing I knew, it was done!


RedZeppelin said...

Hi. I'm considering switching from XP to Linux and I'm glad I stumbled upon your blog.

Have you done any DVD authoring with Ubuntu? From this post it looks like burning CDs is simple, but I burn a lot of divx discs and dvd videos, so being able to do the same in Ubuntu would be very important to me.


Forrest said...

I have not done any DVD authoring but I plan to in the near future. I am planning on transferring some home videos to DVD. I am sure I will write about some when that happens. I found a few good links that I plan to look at first that may be a helpful read for you. The first one has a great graphic showing many of the different applications you can use for each step in the process. What program(s) do you use in Windows?
A quick guide to DVD authoring
Creating a simple DVD using 'Q' DVD-Author

RedZeppelin said...

Well, I'm sort of bouncing between Windows and OS X for my DVD burning & ripping, but I'm about to lose OS X so I need to find a total solution for either XP or Linux.

In XP I use Nero for all my burning and a program called Super for video conversion. I've been using Toast on OS X to burn divx discs for my divx-compatible dvd player, but I've yet to try that in Nero. Not sure if it's even possible.

I also do a lot of DVD-ripping to PSP, and I use a Windows program called Avex DVD to PSP. I haven't looked for a comparable Linux program yet, but as hard as it was to find a good one for Windows I'm not optimistic.