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1/10/01 Wednesday's News: Story DetailReturn to News Page

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Reader's Guide/Tips for Discburner/Itunes CDRW Support
Published: 1/10/2001
Last Update: (more reader tips): 5/27/2003


(Panther Notes: According to a report from a user of Panther Developer release, Apple has changed the structure of support files. See this page of notes/tips posted June 27th, 2003.)
NOTE: If you don't want to edit/modify files and have an unsupported (by iTunes/Discburner) drive - remember to check the FAQ's CDROM/CDR section which has a large list of already modified files for many unsupported drives.
More Hexedit Editing Tips for OS X Device-Plugin files
Here's the latest reader notes on using Hexedit (the most popular editor since 2001 for these files) that includes info already mentioned, but also has notes about editing/revising unequal length string (model number) replacements. (Comments from Hussein Holland which clarifies using Hexedit better than some previous older tips/comments.)

" To modify the support file, Download HexEdit

Directions for using HexEdit for equal character-string length Drive Models:
NOTE: Replace "Vendor" with your brand (LiteOn, Toshiba, etc)

1) Install & Open HexEdit. select Menu Bar>Options, and make sure Overwrite Mode is NOT selected.

2) Go to Finder>Find and enter VendorCDR.device-plugin (while you are here, click once on the icon, and write down the file path displayed in the lower window - you'll need it later to replace the original file)

3) Double-click the icon in the search window, it will open as a data file. Be very careful not to click or drag anything in the file, adding or subtracting characters will render the file invalid, we will merely be substituting one model for another,

4) From HexEdit, do a File>Save As, and save the file to the desktop
4a) You need to know an existing model# from your Vendor. Refer to this 10.2.4 supported drives page, and choose the last model listed under your Vendor.

5) From HexEdit, select Find, and enter (model #) in the "Find:" field, and (your model #) in the "Replace with:" field. Click the replace button.

6) Occasionally, step 5 will not work (I haven't figured out why) In this case, enter (model#) in "Find" field, and HexEdit will take you to the data we need to change. You will see (model#) highlighted. Type (your model #), close and save the file.

7) On your desktop there will now be 2 copies of the file. The one with a tilde (~) at the end is the original, you can trash this.

8) move the modified file into your harddrive icon so you can easily find it in OS9

9) reboot in OS9, use the file path noted in step 2, to navigate to the original. Replace original with newly modified file. (make a backup copy in case a future 10.2.x update overwrites it)

Ignore 8-9 if you are familiar with Root User and/or you don't have OS9 to boot into

OR: Use a Terminal window and enter the following to replace one file with another (again, replace Vendor with your brand)

sudo cp ~/Desktop/VendorCDR.device-plugin
/System/Library/Frameworks/DiscRecording.framework/Versions/A/Resources/DevicePlugIns/VendorCDR.device-plugin

Directions for using HexEdit for unequal character-string length Drive Models:
NOTE: Replace "Vendor" with your brand (LiteOn, Toshiba, etc)

1) Install & Open HexEdit. select Menu Bar>Options, and make sure Overwrite Mode is NOT selected.

2) Go to Finder>Find and enter VendorCDR.device-plugin (while you are here, click once on the icon, and write down the file path displayed in the lower window - you'll need it later to replace the original file)

3) Double-click the icon in the search window, it will open as a data file. Be very careful not to click or drag anything in the file, adding or subtracting characters will render the file invalid, we will merely be substituting one model for another,

4) From HexEdit, do a File>Save As, and save the file to the desktop. Hexedit Find/Find, enter your Vendor, this will take you to the general area of the file that contains the model #'s.

5) Scroll down to the last model listed, highlight (model#) , and enter (your model#)

6) If your model # is longer, highlight additional ". ." following the model # as needed to make up the model character length. If your model # is shorter, highlight ". ." as needed to cover left over characters from the original model#.

7) On your desktop there will now be 2 copies of the file. The one with a tilde (~) at the end is the original, you can trash this.

8) Move the modified file into your harddrive icon so you can easily find it in OS9

9) Reboot in OS9, use the file path noted in step 2, to navigate to the original. Replace original with newly modified file. (make a backup copy in case a future 10.2.x update overwrites it)

Ignore 8-9 if you are familiar with Root User and/or you don't have OS9 to boot into

OR: Use a Terminal window and enter the following to replace one file with another (again, replace Vendor with your brand)

sudo cp ~/Desktop/VendorCDR.device-plugin
/System/Library/Frameworks/DiscRecording.framework/Versions/A/Resources/DevicePlugIns/VendorCDR.device-plugin

Note/Reminder: Literally all OS X version updates will overwrite existing device-plugin files so keep a copy of any edited ones so keep a backup copy of your modified file in case the OS X update does not add native support. Sometimes file formats have changed in X updates, so previous version modified files may not work in later OS X versions, although many do within OS X updates of the same dot version (i.e. 10.2.x, but not 10.1.x plugins don't work in 10.2.x and V/V reportedly.

(Info from January 2003 and before follows - several methods (hexedit, resedit, OS X and OS 9 editing, etc. are farther down the page from past reports)

OS X Device Support Plugin File Mods from the Terminal: (from a recent reader email)
*NOTE* See farther down for easier methods of editing the files using Hexedit or BBEdit, etc. that were posted previously here.

" I noticed several modified device plugin files on the news page, designed to enable support for Sony or Plextor CD devices. I thought I'd provide a straight-forward (command-line) solution that anyone can use for various makes and models, rather than having to wait and hope for modified plugins for their device. (Past editing tips are below, using Hexedit or Resedit, etc.-Mike)

At least one (most likely all) of these modified plugin files simply replace the device ID for a supported device with the ID of the device that you want to use. (FYI - all mod files here use this method - see past notes/tips below on using Hexedit, etc. to do that.-Mike) I had to do this myself to support my brand-new FireWire CD-RW. Anyone can do this by looking up the device ID of their unsupported device (using Apple System Profiler for example-Mike), and editing the appropriate plugin file with a binary-safe editor to replace an unused device ID with the desired new ID. THIS WILL NOT MAGICALLY MAKE DEVICES WORK IF THEY ARE NOT COMPATIBLE WITH THE PLUGIN. It will only cause the plugin to _think_ it can handle your device (which it often can).

The command for adding support for a Sony CRX-215E1 device is the following (you should copy the device plugin aside first so you can restore it if need be):
(Note - this should all be one line, broken here by auto-wrapping in the browser. Also note there's already a modified CRX215E1 plugin for download in the FAQ here, as well as many others.-Mike)

sudo perl -spi -e 's/CD-RW  CRX140E/CD-RW  CRX215E/g' /System/Library/Frameworks/DiscRecording.framework/Resources/DevicePlugIns/SonyCDR.device-plugin

(That's all one line - if it gets broken up, make sure that you fix it before trying to apply it.)

This uses perl (installed as part of Mac OS X) to look for "CD-RW CRX140E" and replace it with "CD-RW CRX215E".

To adjust this for your own situation, you need to get the device ID for your unsupported device (look in AppleSystemProfiler - you need the device ID _exactly_ as shown, with spaces and all), find the plugin file for your make of device (look in the DevicePlugIns folder for all the possibilities), and find out what supported device IDs are in that plugin (run "strings" on the device plugin file, look for device IDs, and choose one for a device that you don't care about; like "strings SonyCDR.device-plugin"). The new device ID string must be the exact same length as the one you are replacing.

I'm not sure of the internals of the device plugins - it's possible that they can have conditional code for different devices, in which case it would make a difference which existing device ID you replaced.
-andrew "

For those that don't want to edit files, the FAQ's CDROM/CDR section has a large list of already modified files (including the Sony CRX-215E1 and other brands/models.) If your drive "brand" doesn't have an existing device-plugin file, you can try cloning a similar "brand's" plugin file and then editing it to include the reported (by ASP) drive model number and rename the file with the brand of your drive. (This is how the Memorex 48Maxx plugin in the FAQ was done - the drive was a firmware ID modified Lite-On 48X model sold by Memorex.)

(previous info/tips follow)

Simplied Sample Plugin/Support File Edit Guide:
Here is a short description to modify the driver under OS X:
(Note - example shows Plextor file and drive model# edits, but it could be Liteon, Sony, etc. HexEdit (link updated for v1.5) is a popular utility for editing the "brand" files to change one model# in the file to the model# of the drive you have and want to add support for.-Mike)

1. Search for a file called PlextorCDR and cd to that directory (cd <path of the file>)
(On Mac OS X 10.2.1, it is located in
/System/Library/Frameworks/DiscRecording.framework/Versions/A/
Resources/DevicePlugIns/PlextorCDR.device-plugin)

2. Make a backup with
sudo cp PlextorCDR.device-plugin PlextorCDR.device-plugin_original

3. Edit the file with
sudo vi PlextorCDR.device-plugin
change the expression PX-W2010A to PX-W4012A
(Example edit - the idea being change an existing drive model# in the file to the exact drive ID/model# of the drive you have that isn't supported-Mike)
(If you do not know how to do this with vi, man vi is your friend, otherwise use BBedit. If you use BBedit, you need to be logged in as root. Pico and TextEdit won't parse the file correctly)

4. BBedit specific:
Also, if you use BBedit, you need to copy the file via cp (man cp)
since BBedit might apply a Resource Fork:
sudo cp PlextorCDR.device-plugin PlextorCDR.device-plugin_new
sudo rm PlextorCDR.device-plugin
sudo cp PlextorCDR.device-plugin_new PlextorCDR.device-plugin
(There might be an easier way, but this works, too.)

5. reboot

In Mac OS 9 it is easier:
(Again Plextor used as an example)
Just edit the file PlextorCDR with BBedit and change the expression PX-W2010A to PX-W4012A. (I.E. Change existing model# in file to the model# of the drive you have.)
If you can't find the file, do a search for "PlextorCDR".

After the changes, my Plextor works like a charm! quiet, fast and no coasters! -Mike
Questions - write support@cilly.com


(from the 11/7/2001 www.xlr8yourmac.com news page)
Several owners of recent Que 24x Firewire CDRW drives have noted no iTunes support (due to the fact some drives had Plextor 24x mechanisms instead of the Sanyo 24x drive Que sells as their IDE model.) One of today's Drive Database entries notes the mods to support files (similar to previous mod files/info noted here in the last year) that enabled support for the drive. (Since it's modifying the Plextor support file - IDE Plextor 24/10/40 drives should also work.)

Resedit w/Forker and Hexedit Editing Notes: (from the 11/7/2001 www.xlr8yourmac.com news page - reader had a Que FW cased plextor drive, but the method is the same for other brands - you edit the "brand" CDR file (OS 9) or "brand" device-plugin file (OS X) to include the model# of the drive you want to add support for. that may not result in 100% reliable operation however, but in many cases it does.-Mike)

Que Firewire 24x in Dual G4 (OS X)
Comments:
" QPS Que!Fire 24x10x40 with Plextor mech on a G4 500 DP. Drive works like a charm -- effortless, fast, beautiful burns and no coasters yet. Drive supports buffer underrun, but most do now.

Authoring Support had to be hacked. Here's the details:

For OS 9, use ResEdit with Forker to modify the data fork of:
/System Folder/Extensions/Authoring Support Files/PlextorCDR
[The original link for Forker I found here in 2001 no longer works as of 2003 and updated link from May 2003 no longer works as of June 2003. I searched Macupdate.com and Versiontracker.com and didn't find it listed as of May 2003. I'm tired of trying to keep up with the moving/bad links over time so I've decided to mirror a Forker 1.3 download here. Resedit is very common and available at MU, VT, etc. -Mike]

For OS X, I used HexEdit
(http://hexedit.sourceforge.net/) to modify:
/System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/DiscRecording.framework/
Versions/A/Resources/DevicePlugIns/PlextorCDR.device-plugin

In either case, look for "PX-W1210A" and change to "PX-W2410A" (unless you have a 12x Plextor mech attached, in which case pick another entry).
[The original reader comments had a typo ("PW-W2410A") - only the numbers change so you only need to change the "12" to "24" in the ID string.-Mike]

Save the file... and you're done. As always, work off a backup, then copy the file to the location listed above. For OS X, use Terminal and sudo cp or su to root then copy.

Everything works beautifully at full 24x burns: In OS 9.2.1 -- Toast 5.0.2, Disc Burner, and iTunes 1 & 2. In OS X 10.1 -- Toast Preview 2, Disc Burner, iTunes 1 & 2. I'm using the Hypermedia 24x discs I got free with my order from Outpost.

(NOTE: for OS 9, I disabled the Disc Burner FireWire and USB authoring extensions in favor of the Toast extensions.)
Steve H "


Info on Resedit Mods to iTunes Drive Support File: (from the 3/8/2001 www.xlr8yourmac.com daily news page)

" Hi Mike ,
Concerning iTunes and CD-burners I think i have found the way to make any burners "unsupported" --> "supported" which DOES NOT Mean that they will burn correctly , however iTunes will report them supported : all you have to do is open the "xxxxCDR" file in the authoring support files Folder in the extensions folder with ResEdit and Open the Data fork (You need *Forker* for Resedit to do that). (Mirror of Forker 1.3 download here-Mike. ) Then go to the bottom of the data fork code and look at the ASCII code (right column), there you will notice the name of the burners supported . For example, i have a yamaha 4260 cdr which is reported unsupported by iTunes, but the yamaha 4416 IS supported,
so i change the 4416 number in the ASCII part of the datafork to 4260 save the changes and ... it WORKS! iTunes now reports the burner supported , however i tried to burn a cd, it burned well, but the cd will not play in my cd player .... but i think it may work for others burners ...
excuse my english, i'm french !!
see ya
Riviera from France"


Reader Tip/Correction:

" I read with interest Eugene Kim's report on using Disc Burner on systems without internal Apple CD-RW drives.

While I won't be able to actually burn a disc until I get home, I'd like to note a small error in his instructions, and a method by which they might be simplified.

The file "ATA" should actually be in 'HD->System Folder-> Extensions->Authoring Support Files' rather than 'HD->System Folder-> Extensions'

As far as I can tell, if you've installed iTunes, you have all necessary files except for Finder 9.1.1, the Disc Burner application, and the Disc Burner extension, which makes Disc Burner installation using TomeViewer a bit less involved.
Thanks much for the always informative site!
Joe "


(Older info from January 2001 info follows)

Eugene Kim wrote with a step by step guide to getting Disk Burn to work with 3rd party drives. (Includes a long list of compatible CDRW drives.)

Note: To extract files from installers that will not run on your Mac, use Tome Viewer-Mike.

" This is how to obtain the cd burn capability of the new Power Mac G4 that Apple has announced yesterday. If you have any of the following 3rd Party drive this should work. This should work not only with internal drives but external as well from what i have read on the web.

* Mitsumi CR-4804TE
* Plextor CD-R PX-W1210A
* Plextor CD-R PX-W124TS
* Plextor CD-R PX-W8220T
* Plextor CD-R PX-W8432T
* Sony CD-RW CRX140S
* Sony CD-RW CRX145E
* Sony CD-RW CRX160E
* TEAC 4x4x32
* Yamaha CRW4416S
* Yamaha CRW6416S
* Yamaha CRW8424S
* Yamaha CRW8824E

Necessary Files
------------------------
* Disc Burn
- asu.info.apple.com/swupdates.nsf/artnum/n11901

* Radiologic CD Master Preview [UPDATE: As of 1/12/00 the page below was removed. The page link worked for about 24 hours when this was originally posted. However it has been pulled now-Mike]
- www.radialogic.com/products/cdmasterpreview.html

Necessary Apps
------------------------
* A file/creator changer application
* Tome Viewer

INSTRUCTIONS -- PLEASE READ NOTES AT BOTTOM
------------------------

1) Mount the "Disc Burn" on your desktop and proceed to extract the files onto your harddrive

2) Extract the following files from the tome located at and place as noted:

- Disc Burner->Installer Files->Disc Burner->Installation Files

HD->System:
* Finder

HD-Applications (Mac OS 9)->Utiliies;
* Disc Burner

HD->System Folder->Extensions:
* Apple CD/DVD Driver
* ATA
* Authoring Support
* CarbonLib
* Disc Burner Extension

HD->System Folder-> Extensions->Authoring Support Files:
* CD
* CD-R
* CDB
* MatshitaCDR
* SonyCDR

3) Using "CD Master Installer" install only the "CD Master Application" from the custom install menu

4) Remove the "PlextorCDR" from the plugins folder in the "CD Master Folder" that was installed in the ROOT directory of your hard drive

5) Take the "PlextorCDR" and change creatory/type strings with your favorite application for this to:

Creator: burn
Type: plug

6) Now place your newly recognized "PlextorCDR" into the "Authoring Support Files" folder

7) Restart and eveything should work as demonstrated by Jobs himself.

NOTES
------------------------
* remember to back up the Finder in case the new Finder doesn't work or your machine won't boot

* the heirarchy that is noted in the instructions is necessary... 9.1 restructured the way applications folder is named and the utilities folder is nested within this... iTunes will not be able to burn CD's because it won't be able to find the "Disc Burner" application

* my machine is as follows:

- G4 Gigabit OS 9.1
- Plextor CD-R PX-W1210A installed in place of DVD-RAM

I am fortunate because this drive boots with a CD Refer to xlr8yourmac's drive database to find if any of the forementioned drives will boot from a CD

COMMENTS
--------
This drive apparently burns at 12x from the background. I have no idea if "burn-proof" is working in the background but I am assuming that the new software has its own buffering methodology in order to prevent this. This email was written, as well as the folowing applications were open as i was burning a iTunes Audio CD:

-IE
-Finder
-AOL Instant Messenger
-Mulberry
-Gerry's ICQ
-iTunes

Everything works as Jobs has demonstrated, at least from what i have tested so far. I am not responsible for any damage that might occur from this procedure. I hope Apple starts shipping these drives instead of their wimpy 8x drives. Good luck and have fun...
Best luck,
Eugene Kim"


Related Links:

I welcome reports or tips on iTunes compatibility with 3rd party drives - enter a report on CDRW drives in our Drive Compatibility Database. (Use comments field for iTunes compat. comments.)


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