Buying and storing computer games can be tricky. You may lose the disc or they will all be scratched. Most games nowadays require a disc to be installed in order to play. Learning how to copy PC games to your computer can save you time and frustration if you lose your physical copy.
Step 1. Download and install CD / DVD copying software and virtual disk software
These are 2 things you need (in addition to your CD-ROM drive) to burn your game image to your hard drive and you need to know how to use them. This article assumes that MagicISO is used to copy the image and Alcohol 52% to emulate the virtual disk. Almost all software that performs the same function is similar enough to follow the same instructions.
Step 2. Insert the disc into the drive after installing the software
Open MagicISO and select the "Tools" menu and click "Make ISO from CD / DVD-ROM". Select the source drive (it should be automatically selected for you), decide how you want to name the file and where you want to save it, complete the operation. This should take about 15-20 minutes.
Step 3. Install the image to the virtual drive
Go to "My Computer" from the Start menu or Desktop and right click on the virtual disk icon. Click on the "Mount Image" button and find where you saved the ISO file. After installing it, double-click on the disk and this should start the auto-start (autoload) function sequence.
- Many PC games have disk protection, which means they won't start until you have a physical copy of the game on your CD / DVD. If so, using free software probably won't work. Even if you have a disc image, you will not be able to start the game. The solution to this problem is to buy a full-featured CD / DVD ripping software.
- Alternatively, you can skip the virtual aspect and burn the image to disk. You can do this in any of 2 ways. First: have 2 CD / DVD discs (one of them must be Writer - write) and write directly from 1 disc to another using any CD burning software. The second method is to use ISO copying software as shown in these steps, and then burn this image to disc.
- Beware of copyright infringement. It is illegal to copy computer games for any purpose other than backing up a game that you legally obtained and for your personal use. This tutorial is about learning how to copy computer games - for purely personal, legal use.
- If your backup is not working due to copy or disk protection, avoid downloading broken games from questionable sites. This is dangerous and illegal as these files often contain viruses and other malware.