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CD-ROM emulation in MS-DOS

This short document will guide you through the steps needed to configure a virtual CD-ROM drive on your DOS computer. This will let you run games that normally require a CD-ROM, even on computers that do not have a physical CD-ROM drive installed.

As a result, your games will run much faster, and you will not need to change CD's and cause undue wear on them. There is one drawback though. If the game relies on CD-Audio, you will not be able to hear the background music. If you know of a way or a workaround to enable CD-Audio, I'd like to know! :) Thanks.

Step 1 - Download the BCD utility

  • Go to this page to download BCD (Buldozer's CD faker). This utility will make any drive letter on a DOS/WIN3/WIN95 computer look and behave like a standard CD-ROM drive. Please download and unpack the file and then copy it onto your DOS computer.

Step 2 - Copy files from the CD

  • Copy the files from your physical game CD (in our case Command & Conquer GDI disc) to the hard disk of your target computer. You will need to copy all files, including hidden files if there are any. Copy them to a directory you can easily recognize.

In this example we copy the files from D: (physical, REAL CD-ROM) to C: inside the directory CC-GDI.


Step 3 - Assign drive letter for CD files and emulate CD drive

  • Use the built-in DOS command subst to create a drive letter of the directory you copied your files into. In our case, we copied the files to C:\CC-GDI, and we want the virtual CD to be drive E: so use:
  • Now you can run BCD to turn that subst'ed E: drive into a CD-ROM drive. We'll also give the CD-ROM drive the same label as the actual C&C CD, “GDI”:
BCD E: /n:1 /l:"GDI"
  • If you want to emulate several CD-ROM drives, E: and F: for example, use the following syntax, using the first letter as the first drive. BCD will then reserve the following letters
BCD E: /n:2 /l1:"CD1" /l2:"CD2"

Step 4 - Install game

  • Now run the installation program from the virtual CD drive.


CD-ROM Emulation Files Program downloads for emulating CD-ROM drives in DOS.

About this site

Resources on this site are provided as-is. I do not guarantee that the information is accurate and/or that the software will work as expected in your case. As such, I cannot be held responsible or liable for any damage(s) caused either directly or indirectly by using any resources or information on this site. That said, I've made every effort to make sure the information and resources provided on this site are as accurate as possible.

guides/dos_cd-rom_emulation.txt · Last modified: 2020-05-03 07:26 by omolini