Microsoft appears to have refreshed/re-released Virtual CD-ROM Control Panel, a free utility that allows users of Windows 7, Windows Vista and Windows XP to mount ISO disk image files as virtual CD-ROM drives. The Virtual CD-ROM Control Panel can be useful for reading disk images to install software or recover backup files.
How to use Virtual CD-ROM Control Panel:
- Copy VCdRom.sys to your %systemroot%\system32\drivers folder. Execute VCdControlTool.exe
- Click “Driver control”
- If the “Install Driver” button is available, click it. Navigate to the %systemroot%\system32\drivers folder, select VCdRom.sys, and click Open. Click “Start”. Next Click OK.
- Click “Add Drive” to add a drive to the drive list. Ensure that the drive added is not a local drive. If it is, continue to click “Add Drive” until an unused drive letter is available.
- Select an unused drive letter from the drive list and click “Mount”.
- Navigate to the image file, select it, and click “OK”. UNC naming conventions should not be used, however mapped network drives should be OK.
- You may now use the drive letter as if it were a local CD-ROM device. When you are finished, you may unmount, stop, and remove the driver from memory using the driver control.
Virtual CD-ROM Control Panel download
Download Virtual CD-ROM Control Panel from Microsoft.
UPDATE: Although the Microsoft download page may state “Date published: 4/23/2013”, the utility is an old tool apparently having been first released in 2001.
Since Windows 8 natively supports mounting of ISO files, this kind of tool is not needed for Windows 8. In Windows 8, you can simply open an ISO file and Windows automatically assigns it a drive letter and reads it as a virtual drive.