How to Run CD and DVD Programs Without the Disc

By Quinn Marshall

Updated February 10, 2017

A spinning disc drive reduces battery life on a laptop.
i Southern Stock/Photodisc/Getty Images

If you have installed a program onto your computer that requires the disc to be inserted every time you use it, you might have noticed that your computer makes a distracting humming noise while running the CD/DVD or that your laptop's battery life decreases while using the program. These problems are caused by the disc drive, which consumes additional power to spin the disc rapidly while reading it. However, a computer program can be run without its CD or DVD by copying the program's files directly to your computer's hard drive.

Insert the DVD or CD into your computer's disc drive. You will need to use an external USB disc drive if your computer does not have a disc drive with DVD burning capabilities.

Right-click on your computer's desktop and choose "New" and then "Folder". Title the folder with the name of the program you are going to copy to your computer.

Download a CD and DVD copying program and install it onto your computer. Nero BurnLite, ImgBurn and Alcohol 120% can copy both CD and DVD discs. Nero BurnLite and ImgBurn are both free, while Alcohol 120% is shareware and has a 30-day free trial.

Launch the disc copying program that you downloaded. Click "File" and then "Open" and choose your disc from "Computer"; then click "Copy". When prompted, select the folder you created on your desktop as the "Save" location. Wait for the entire disc to copy before continuing.

Download a DVD image mounting program. Daemon Tools Lite, ISODisk and MagicDisc can mount ISO and other disc images and run them like virtual disc drives. Daemon Tools Lite and ISODisk are free, whereas certain versions of MagicDisc are shareware.

Remove the CD or DVD from your computer. Right-click on the disc image file inside of the folder on your desktop and then select "Mount" from the list. This will simulate putting the CD or DVD into your computer disc drive. The program will launch and run like normal.


Store your CD or DVD in a safe location as a backup, in case the file you created ever becomes corrupted.