Category Archives: CD/DVD Tools

Ashampoo’s “No Charge” Five App Giveaway – Continues

imageI first reported on this Ashampoo giveaway in early January, 2012, and while driving around the Internet today, I found that the original free offer is still valid. If you missed out – now is your chance to take advantage of this super offer.

If you’re wondering if you should bother; here’s what regular reader, super user, and good friend, John Bent, had to say following the last free offer.

I can endorse your comments about Ashampoo, particularly Burning Studio. I installed this a couple of years ago and liked it so much I upgraded to the paid-for version. Subsequent upgrades are a bit more than one third the cost. It’s not something I use daily but, when I do want to do some copying, it’s good to know I have something reliable in the locker. Anyone who is not familiar with Ashampoo’s products should certainly grab this offer.

Original post:

Ashampoo, is noted for developing top quality, easy to use applications, and periodically makes available free, current or previous versions of their retail products. This time round, Ashampoo is offering 5 of their applications, gratis (retail value $110, or so). I believe this a limited time offer and, there is no guarantee the offer will not be withdrawn without notice.


Click to expand graphic.

Applications include:

Ashampoo Registry-Cleaner – Update your registry and optimize the performance of your PC.

Ashampoo Photo Optimizer 3 – Click-and-go editing for point-and-shoot photos.

Ashampoo Photo Commander 8 – The only tool you need for organizing, editing, presenting and sharing your digital photos!

Ashampoo Photo Converter – Your powerful tool for photo conversion, size adjustment, watermarking and lots more!

Ashampoo Burning Studio Elements – Get your burning projects done – fast and simple.


If you’ve not used Ashampoo’s applications in the past, then you’re in for a treat. This company develops absolutely first class applications, and I recommend that you give all of these applications a try.

To take advantage of this offer, go here and enter coupon code – merryxmas.

I must point out that registration is required to unlock any application past the original 10 day trial period. You might consider this process a bit of a hassle. But, then again – maybe not.

System requirements (all applications) – XP, Vista, Win 7.

Ashampoo loves to remind you occasionally of the value of their full software lineup, so if you find it bothersome to receive this type of email, you’d be better off passing. Personally, I find it easier to stay in the loop on new software developments.


Filed under CD/DVD Tools, downloads, Free Full Versions, Giveaways, Graphic Software, Image Editors

Free ImgBurn – Is It One Step Ahead Of CDBurnerXP?

imageA recent review of the freebie CD/DVD burning application – CDBurnerXP – led a number of readers to offer their views on burner applications. A particular free favorite amongst readers, and one I’ve run with on and off over the years is – ImgBurn.

Since there’s no better time like the present, and driven by curiosity as to why readers found ImgBurn so compelling – I revisited this application and ran with it for several days. Glad I did.

I’ll jump ahead here – directly to my conclusion. ImgBurn is a superior CD/DVD burning application. No hesitation – this application ROCKS.

The following screen capture illustrates the wide range of application settings available. For those of us who are conversant with all of the ins and outs, this is very advantageous. An average user might well skip by these selections. Still, the options are there and, jumping into the Settings menu offers a terrific learning opportunity for those who are interested .


Ez Mode Picker GUI shown. As you can see, I’ve chosen to write an image file to disc. Writing image files to DVD, is the most common use I have for burner software.


Since I’m burning to a rewritable disc – ImgBurn has given me a “just in time” warning – saving me from what could have been a critical error – overwriting valuable data. It’s not likely that I would have saved important data on a DVD+RW but, that doesn’t mean that it couldn’t happen.

So, the warning popup as shown in the following screen capture – is absolutely necessary, in my view.


Given the go ahead, the application got right down to work – erased the disc; burned the ISO image; and verified the data. Total time to completion – 4 minutes 18 seconds (586 MB).

I do agree with regular reader Muncher W., that we could do without the blast of celebratory music.   Smile


In a comparable test (in conjunction with this review test), running CDBurnerXP, which I reviewed several days ago, that application, including a manual erasure of the disc’s contents (* more on that in a moment), took 4 minutes and 10 seconds. An inconsequently  time difference.

* If you are using a DVD-RW (as I did for these tests) which already contains data – CDBurnerXP will not warn you that you are about to overwrite that data. Bad! Very Bad!


As an expert user, I make it a practice to always read a rewritable disc before using that disc on a new job but, an average user might easily be burned (no pun intended), if that simple step is not followed. Better, I think, that a burner application should shout out a warning.

While CDBurnerXP, with its simple straightforward GUI and limited choices, is a very fine application for those who are relatively new to CD/DVD burning – the lack of a warning has the potential to cause havoc.

The chances may be slim – but, they are real, nevertheless.

The usual offer on installation. As always – caution is the byword.


System requirements: Windows XP, Vista and Win 7.

Download at: ImgBurn

A portable version is available at: The Portable Freeware Collection.


Filed under CD/DVD Tools, downloads, Freeware, Portable Applications, Software

Have A Need To Burn CD/DVDs? – Checkout Free CDBurnerXP 4.4.0


The predictions are  – CDs and DVDs, as storage media, are on the way out. It seems a reasonable prediction given the  availability, and cost effectiveness, of both large capacity USB Flash Drives and large capacity USB portable Hard Drives. We’ve come a long way from the days when I bought my first USB stick – with its tiny 128 MB capacity (huge, in its day) – to today’s mega monsters.

It’s hardly surprising then, that CD/DVD costs have taken a dramatic tumble. I recently came across an offer at a local “excess inventory” outlet, which makes that point eloquently – 100 Memorex DVDs for $2.96. I couldn’t buy drink coasters at that price and, old/damaged CD/DVDs make very acceptable coasters.   Smile

So, despite the fact that solid state devices are cheap and portable and, are often ideal for long term storage, I still have a need to burn data to DVDs. If you have a similar need, and you’re looking for value in a CD/DVD burner (and what can be better than free), then CDBurnerXP (last updated November, 2011), is definitely a significant freeware application.

The fairly simple interface makes it a breeze to use for even the most inexperienced user, although it should be said that some users have mentioned the interface has some confusing aspects.  Hmm, I don’t see it.

I have burned dozens of DVDs in the last year using this free application, and in every case, CDBurnerXP did the job flawlessly. I can’t tell you how many times, over the years, a burner has misbehaved – but lots, comes close.

If you’re looking for a free CD/DVD burner application to do what it says it will do, with an easy to work with interface, then CDBurnerXP could be the program you’ve been looking for.

The following screen captures illustrate just how “one click simple” it is to burn an ISO for example, using CDBurnerXP.




Now, how hard is that?

Quick facts:

Burn audio-CDs with, and without gaps between tracks

Burn on the fly (you don’t have to image the disc in advance)

Rip Audio-CDs to a Hard Drive

Obtains track-information (ID3-tags) from the Internet

Burn and create ISO-files

Create bootable discs


Multilanguage interface

Customizable with many settings

Data verification after burn,

Simple cover printing

Supports most IDE, USB, FireWire and SCSI drives

Free – (for both personal and corporate use)

No adware, malicious components, or restrictions

Available languages: Arabic, Bahasa Melayu, Catalan, Georgian, Hebrew, Japanese, Korean, Slovenian.

System Requirements: Windows 2000, XP, Vista, Win 7 (64 bit available Vista and Win 7).

Additional Requirements: .NET Framework 2.0

Download at: CDburnerXP

A portable version of CDBurnerXP (last updated January 8th, 2012) which includes the full feature set (ideal for installation on a Flash Drive), is available at: Softpedia

Note: If you are using a DVD-RW (as I did for these tests) which already contains data – CDBurnerXP will not warn you that you are about to overwrite that data.


Filed under CD/DVD Tools, downloads, Freeware, New Computer User Software Tools, Portable Applications, Software

Two Thanksgiving Giveaways From Digiarty Software – MacX DVD Ripper Pro and WinX DVD Ripper Platinum

imageIn celebration of the upcoming American Thanksgiving holiday, Digiarty Software is sharing limited numbers of both MacX DVD Ripper Pro, and WinX DVD Ripper Platinum, as Thanksgiving gifts.

Giveaway 10,000 Copies of DVD Ripper for Thanksgiving 2011 from (Digiarty Software) MacXDVD Software.

The upgraded MacX DVD Ripper Pro is perfectly compatibility with Android, iPhone 4S, iPad 2, HTC, Samsung, XOOM, Galaxy Tab, etc. It can assist you to rip any DVD (including the newly released DVD movies) to almost any format that widely used by applications and devices.


WinX DVD Ripper Platinum Thanksgiving Edition

WinX DVD Ripper Platinum Thanksgiving Edition. The best way to backup DVD movie/music to iPhone/4S, iPad, iPod, Apple TV, Android, HTC, Samsung, XOOM, Galaxy Tab, PSP, etc. Support the latest Disney encrypted DVDs. It was tested by CNET as No 1 fast DVD backup & ripping solution in the market.


If you should find that all 30,000 copies of WinX DVD Ripper Platinum have been subscribed to, I’ve got 10 sponsored licenses to hand out – try one of these. (click on the license list below, to expand to original).


If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.


Filed under CD/DVD Tools, downloads, Free Full Versions, Giveaways, Mac, Software Giveaways, Video Apps, Windows Tips and Tools

Get uRexsoft DVD Ripper Platinum (Win) For Free

imageAnother month, another DVD ripper you’ve probably never heard of. Even so – from now until Sept. 30, this $35 program is absolutely free. And it works!

Best of all, and as opposed to so many of this type of offer – there are no hoops to jump through.


Read all about this software giveaway on CNET’s Cheapskate page here.

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.


Filed under CD/DVD Tools, downloads, Free Full Versions, Multimedia Tools, Software, Software Giveaways, Video Tools, Windows Tips and Tools

Save $49.95: WinX DVD Ripper Platinum KungFu Edition – FREE Until May 31

A shout out to long time reader Ben Blasto, for the tip on Digiarty Software’s latest license giveaway – WinX DVD Ripper Platinum KungFu Edition.

This post is informational only – I have not tested this application but, I have downloaded it. It just might come in handy.

Click on graphic to expand to original size.


Fast facts (from the site):

Bypass all Copy Protections & Region Locks – It provides breakthrough performance to access all DVD encryption technologies, including DVD CSS, region code, RCE, Sony ArccOS, UOPs, Disney X-project DRM.

Feature-rich DVD Ripping Software – WinX DVD Ripper Platinum offers worry-free conversion of DVD to AVI (DivX, Xvid), MP4, MPEG, WMV, 3GP, MOV, FLV, which makes DVD compatible with all popular Windows media players, Apple iPhone (iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4), iPad/iPad 2, iPod, Sony PSP, Zune, Mobile phone, etc.

Clone DVD to ISO & Copy DVD – The built-in DVD copy feature supports 1:1 full DVD disc to ISO image clone. It also allows you to copy full title/main content of DVD to MPEG-2 file with lossless video quality and 5.1 Channel AC3/DTS Dolby audio.

No.1 Fast DVD Ripping Speed – With this DVD converter, you can flexibly set CPU utilization. It also supports the newest CUDA, owns optimized configuring for i5 i7 CPU and Super Encode Engine based on MMX- SSE & 3DNow.

Enjoy Unmatchable Video Audio Quality – The embedded High Quality Engine and “Yadif Double Frames” De-interlacing Engine greatly improve the output video effect.

Rip DVD to iPhone iPad/iPad 2 – Perfectly rip and backup DVD to popular portable devices, including Apple iPhone, iPad, iPod, Apple TV, Sony PSP, Zune, Zen, etc. Plus, this program comes preloaded with a number of profiles for these devices.

Happily, you don’t need to visit the developer’s Facebook page to “like” (a pain in the ass marketing tool currently being used by too many developers), or register with the developer, in order to receive the license code. Simply download from the site and apply the following license code.


System requirements: Windows XP, Vista (32 & 64 bit), Windows 7 (32 & 64 bit).

Download at: the developer’s site (Digiarty Software)

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.


Filed under 64 Bit Software, CD/DVD Cloning, CD/DVD Tools, Digital Media, downloads, Giveaways, Software, Software Giveaways, Video Apps, Video Tools, Windows Tips and Tools

Free Nero Kwik – Media Management Application

Nero has just released a free media management application, Nero Kwik Media, that’s definitely worth a look. Richard Carriere, Nero’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing explains the new application this way – “Kwik Media …….. lets you do picture, music, and video organizing, managing, exchanging, putting up on social sites, viewing, and basic editing.”


Click graphic to expand to original.

The install is a two stage process. In the initial stage, a number of Direct 3D extensions and sundry other bits and pieces, are installed – as per the following screen shot.


Following the required reboot, the main Kwik Media application is installed. If you’re watching the install carefully, you’ll notice that an Ask Toolbar appears to be installed. The reality is – the Toolbar executable is copied to the HD. However, you will have an opportunity to reject activating the Toolbar.


The user interface is underwhelming from a styling perspective – a perfect example of form following function.

If simple and unobtrusive is what you want – then, you’ve got it here.


Click graphic to expand to original.

Media library user interface:


Click graphic to expand to original.

Media Center user interface:


Click graphic to expand to original.

Creation Center user interface:


Click graphic to expand to original.

Burn and copy Disc Center user interface:


Click graphic to expand to original.

Fast facts:

Move photos, videos and music anywhere – Move all the files your heart desires to and from your PC and mobile devices

Play back Blu-ray movies – View HD video projects on DVD and watch Hollywood Blu-ray movies on your laptop

Burn Audio CDs from MP3s – With just a few clicks, you can create a CD mix from your favorite playlists

Play and rip music – Play back your favorite jams from your laptop and rip Audio CDs to add to your computer

Find and organize friends by faces – Easily organize photos of friends and family by faces

Search and organize – Browse and organize photos, music and videos in one place

Play and rip music – Conveniently create projects to burn and share straight from your library

Edit photos before sharing – Make quick and easy edits of photos before sharing or adding to slideshows

Share videos on YouTube or myNero – Upload your photos, music and videos to social media websites with just a few clicks

Edit slideshows with effects – Add exciting, animated background themes to slideshows

Easy Media Syncing – Sync your music playlists as well as photo and video album contents from your PC to any mobile device with USB mass storage

Download at: Nero

Additional functionality can be purchased (although, some apps are free), from the Nero Store.


Click graphic to expand to original.

Bottom line:

If you’re looking for a reasonably inclusive free media application, capable of handling videos, music, and photos, then Nero Kwik Media should make your short list.

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.


Filed under Audio Software, CD/DVD Tools, Connected Devices, downloads, Freeware, Graphic Software, Image Editors, Integrated Solutions, Media Players, Photo Tools, Software, Video Tools, Windows Tips and Tools