Burning CD-Rs or CD-RWs within the Mac OS X Finder is extremely easy and very similar to working with any other storage device. To make the process as transparent as possible, Mac OS X creates a hidden CD-sized temporary storage area on your hard drive. Applications, files, and folders that are added to a CD are actually copied to this location until the user tells the system to burn the CD. Only after the burn starts are files actually transferred to the CD media.
To write your own CD, first insert media into the CD writer. The Mac OS X Finder will prompt you to choose where you want to use the CD, as seen in Figure 3.31. Again, this doesn't actually write anything to the CD just yet, but it tells the computer what your intentions are for the disc.
Figure 3.31 Before you can start using a CD, you must tell Mac OS X what type of CD it will be.
Enter a name for the CD you are writingit will appear with this name on the Desktop. Next, choose an action. There are five provided:
If you'd like to leave the CD in the drive but not prepare it, click Ignore. You can also choose to make the current settings the default with the Make This Action the Default check box.
Because this is a chapter about burning files from the Finder, choose Open Finder, and then click OK.
After a few seconds, an icon representing the CD will appear on your desktop. You can interact with this virtual volume as you would any other under Mac OS Xcopy files to it, delete files, and so on.
When you've created the CD layout that you like, you can start the burn process by choosing Burn Disc from the File menu, or by clicking the Burn toolbar shortcut. In addition, dragging the CD to the trash will also prompt for burning to begin. Mac OS X will display the dialog shown in Figure 3.32.
To choose Burn Disc from the File menu, the frontmost Finder window must be the CD's window. If the CD is not the active window, the menu item will be disabled.
Figure 3.32 Choose Burn to write the CD.
Choose your Burn speed and click the Burn button to start the process of writing the CD. This will take a few minutes, and will be tracked by the Finder much like a normal copy operation. If you've decided against writing the CD, click Eject to remove the media and erase the CD layout you've created.