How to Make a CD Auto Run

By Erin McManaway

You can allow CDs to auto run in your computer's disc drive depending on the type of media on the CD.
i cd-r image by matteo NATALE from

Certain CDs have the ability to automatically run once they have been placed in your computer's disc drive. This includes Music CDs and some software CDs that may have the built-in ability to AutoPlay. This allows a music CD to launch your preferred media player and begin to play music. This also allows game or software CD to launch the game or program as soon as the disc is read. You can configure your Windows AutoPlay settings to automatically run depending on the type of media the computer detects on your CD.

Windows XP

Double-click the "My Computer" icon on your desktop.

Locate the icon for your disc drive. This will usually be listed under "Devices with Removable Storage."

Right-click on your main disc drive and choose "Properties" from the menu.

Navigate to the "AutoPlay" tab. Here you will see the current Autorun settings for CDs with different media types.

Choose a media type from the drop down menu. For example, you can choose "Music CD" if you want to change the way a music CD plays when you insert it in your disc drive.

Place a mark next to the "Select an action to perform" option.

Click on the action that you would like to happen when you insert your CD into the disc drive. For example, you can choose "Play audio CD" for a music CD in the media player of your choice.

Click "Apply" and then "OK" to exit from the settings once you have made changes to your configuration. The next time you place a CD into your disc drive that includes that media type, it will Autorun using your newly configured settings.

Windows Vista and Windows 7

Click the Start button and choose "Control Panel" from the Start Menu.

Choose "AutoPlay" from the Control Panel.

Place a check in the box next to "Use AutoPlay for all media devices" if the box is not already checked.

Locate the media type from the list provided. For example, you can change the settings for an "Audio CD."

Click the drop down menu next to the media type to view the available AutoPlay options.

Click on one of the options in the menu to make that the default action for a CD with that media type. For example, you can set the default to "Play audio CD" using a particular media player installed on your computer.

Click the "Save" button at the bottom of the window once you have completed your configuration. Next time you place a CD with that media type into your computer, Windows will use your configured Autorun settings to launch it.