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I'm using Ubuntu 13.04. I want to take an ISO copy of XP installation CD but when I insert CD it's seen as empty CD. Is there any way to access the content of CD?

  • How did you check the CD? Could you post the output of mount (browse to the CD directory first if using a GUI file viewer)? – Graeme Feb 23 '14 at 20:03
  • @Graeme I use Thunar file manager, on the left pane it lists drives and my XP CD seen as Blank CD-R Disk – kenn Feb 23 '14 at 20:09
  • Can you post the output of udisks --show-info /dev/cdrom | grep blank, this is another way to test for a blank CD. – Graeme Feb 23 '14 at 20:38
  • udisks --show-info /dev/cdrom | grep blank blank: 1 – kenn Feb 23 '14 at 20:39
  • By the way some suggested running sudo modprobe sr_mod but I think that module is not builtin my kernel. I get sudo modprobe sr_mod libkmod: ERROR ../libkmod/libkmod.c:505 kmod_lookup_alias_from_builtin_file: could not open builtin file '/lib/modules/3.8.0-35-generic/modules.builtin.bin' error – kenn Feb 23 '14 at 20:42
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From what you have posted, this sounds more like a hardware issue than a software one. It is likely that the drive isn't reading the disc because either the CD is dirty/scratched, the lens in the drive is dirty and/or the drive is near the end of its life. For the drive, you would tend to first notice issues with copied and/or scratched discs.

Another possibility for a copied disc is that there was an error when burning (or it simply wasn't formatted correctly).

Either way, I would suggest trying the disc in another drive. If it reads ok, at least you can rule out that it is completely corrupted.

Otherwise you could try:

  • Clean the disc - ideally with something made of soft cotton.
  • Clean the drive lens - ideally gently with a soft cotton bud and iso-propyl alcohol, although this may require dismantling the drive. You can get lens cleaning kits, though often they aren't that effective.
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If /dev/sr0 is your CD-ROM device, you can use dd if=/dev/sr0 of=./XP.iso to make a local copy.

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    Thank you for your post, I already tried that with no luck. I get following output dd if=/dev/sr0 of=./XP.iso 0+0 records in 0+0 records out 0 bytes (0 B) copied, 0.000210851 s, 0.0 kB/s – kenn Feb 23 '14 at 19:56
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depending to the comments above:

On automounter you won´t see errors. Try to mount it manually on shell.

The command on ubuntu should be

sudo mount /dev/yourdevice /your/destination

And see if it prints some errors.

But: If dd was not able to find anything your cd, it is really unreadable, so they are too many scratches on it. Try to clean it up and test it again. If it doesn´t, try to download Windows XP related to your version on CD. So, your key should work on this download. You can also try ddrescue. In this case, because CD´s are only readable, you may use ddrescue direct (remember first using dd for nearly broken hdd´s and then ddrescue on the mirrored file(s)).

  • None of this will work if the disc registers as blank. The drive needs to register that there is data on the disc before any of it is available via the device file. – Graeme Feb 24 '14 at 14:23
  • Good point about downloading Windows XP though - there actually seem to be official sources for this. – Graeme Feb 24 '14 at 14:24

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