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Category: Miscellaneous Applications

47. What's the easiest way to create a hybrid auto-launch CD?


1) Create a mounted disk image with all of the files laid out the way you want them to be. MacOS will copy your window settings, so be particular about it. Move support files down to the bottom of the window then resize it from the bottom corner, dragging it up, to keep the support files off-screen.

2) In Toast create a Custom Hybrid CD.

3) For the Mac volume, choose your mounted disc image. Select your file/application you want to auto-start. If you can't select a file for some reason then create an applescript application (Make sure it is not set to stay open and do not show splash screen) that launches your file.

4) Lay out your PC files as you see fit. Turn on Joliet names if you want to keep long file names, otherwise be sure to consider using short names (FILENA~1.EXT and PROGRA~1.exe instead, in examples below) -IF- your auto-launch is an application, you must have this in an autorun.inf file:

[AUTORUN] open=(path o)PROGRAM.EXE

If you have a FILE to run, not an application, then you must use


This will pass it off to the system handler for such a file. DO NOT write this file in simpletext. Use an editor such as BBEdit (Lite) or Tex(t)-Edit to write it making sure to save as a Windows text file. Mac line endings will mess it up.

5) Burn the CD. Test it in as many PCs/Macs as possible to make sure you got it working correctly. Be sure to check these steps to make sure you have auto-run enabled on the CD.

--- Troubleshooting ---

Q.) What if it doesn't launch on (SomeOS)? A.) Check to make sure that Auto-play is enabled. OS X and OS 9 handle it in QuickTime settings. Windows, well, I forget where it is.

Q.) How can I be sure someone knows what file to open? A.) Make an alias to the file you want to auto-launch on the Mac side, give it some gaudy bright icon (or just make it stand out cleanly) and call it something like START HERE. Windows Shortcuts can be harder to deal with, but if you have experience with a .bat/batch file scripting, and you are really so concerned, then write a batch file that will launch your document.

Q.) Your directions ruined my computer! A.) Actually, there's absolutely no way my directions would do so if you follow them to the intent and spirit they are written. However, since you should always read a document through before you follow any steps, I am hereby releasing myself from all indemnity here; use these steps at your own risk. I am a professional but I haven't burned any demo/expo/etc. CDs in a year or more. However, I wish you luck in your travails, and godspeed.

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