How to Copy Protect a Data CD

by Lita McLeary
cd-r image by matteo NATALE from

A copy protection software is useful if your data CD contains valuable files that you do not want duplicated. It basically "locks" the CD so that no other user will be able to copy the contents of the CD. Since Windows operating system does not come pre-installed with a program that offers copy protection for an optical media, you will have to download and install a software that will do it for you.

Step 1

Burn the data onto the CD. To burn, copy the files from their location and paste it to your CD drive found in "My Computer." Click "Write files to CD" and follow the on-screen instructions of the "CD Writing Wizard." If you have already burned the data onto the CD, skip this step.

Step 2

Search for a copy protection software over the Internet. Some of these programs are free while others will require you to pay for a fee before you can download them (See Resource list).

Step 3

Save the software and install it to your computer. Reboot the computer if necessary.

Step 4

Launch the program and browse the location of the CD. Look for an option that allows you to "Encrypt Files," or something similar. Select "Copy Protect," or something similar, to commence the copy protection process.

Eject the CD from the optical drive and insert it back in. Click on "My Computer," and then select your CD drive. Check if you can copy the files that are stored in the CD. If you can't or the computer prompts you that the CD is copy protected, then the copy protection process was successful.


  • Note that copy protecting a CD does not provide fool proof protections, as there are CD ripping software available that can decrypt or break through the copy protection.


  • Some paid copy protection software may allow you to download the installer and use the free trial version. Take advantage of this and copy protect your CD.
  • Make sure that your CD-ROM is equipped with a "burning" or "writing" feature. Otherwise, copy protection will not be successful.
  • Consult the user guide of the copy protection software you installed for specific instructions.


Photo Credits

About the Author

Lita McLeary started writing professionally for the "Philippine Inquirer" in 1989, a daily national newspaper. She has written for private online clients for over seven years. At present, she writes full-time for various websites. McLeary holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in liberal arts from the University of the Philippines.

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