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Home > Software Reviews > Optical Storage > 12x CD-RW

Monday, February 18, 2002
Prassi PrimoCD Pro8 CD-R Software

1. Installation

PrimoCD Pro Pro 8 v1.1.317 - Page 1

History

Prassi Europe SARL was founded on September 23, 1999 in Le Mans, France. The company was established to provide a worldwide freedom of choice in easy to use yet remarkably advanced CD and DVD recording software. In October 1999, Prassi Europe released its first product, a professional CD Mastering and Duplication software package called PrimoCD Pro. PrimoCD Pro is the first truly simultaneous, multitasking CD Mastering application capable of preparing and executing many different jobs at once.

Overview

PrimoCD Pro is a professional mastering software designed for CD and DVD Recorders, Towers and Autoloaders. It performs direct disc copy, perfect disc imaging to file, ISO and UDF mastering, Audio disc from Wave MP3 and WMA files. Several recording jobs can be prepared and run simultaneously, or queued and run in sequence.

If the autoloader is equipped with a printer, this application takes care of handling the disc printing as well. A complete activity log, full error code return, sophisticated verify, beside being suited for a fast computer equipped with several SCSI boards and many recorders (virtually up to 64), make this application the ideal tool for the professional in disc mastering and replication. However, even the advanced power-user with 2-3 cdr's will see several unique benefits too.

What PrimoCD Pro can do ? (Source Prassi PrimoCD Pro On-line Manual)
- Direct Disc Copy / Stream Job: Direct copy from a CD-ROM or DVD-ROM to the target recorders can be made. When running an Autoloader, the "Stream Mode" Job is available, where the source discs are put on the top and in the middle of the input stack, thereby minimizing user intervention.
- Global Image: A disc can be completely copied to a .GI (Global Image) file where all the information and the disc geometry are stored. This .GI file is one you can save or send over a network to recreate later or elsewhere the exact source disc. The Global Image stores also disc printing and user information.
- Audio Mastering: An audio disc can be made with Wave or MP3 files with pre-gap editing. The MP3 files are decompressed on the fly. It is possible to make an audio compilation from MP3 files directly, without any conversion on disk, Disc at Once, at 8x recording speed using 8 recorders simultaneously, with just a 400MHz PC.

What is this "job" and why is important ?
Every Job is a file and the application is MDI based. Therefore you can create and open several jobs at once, may be even prepare a new one while another is already running. The jobs can run simultaneously (the application will alert you if you try to use the same drives or if the same bus is engaged) or queued-up for sequential operations. A set of opened jobs along with their sequence and position in the main window, is called Workspace, and you can save and reload several jobs at once just saving or loading one of the 8 available Workspaces. The log will list in different colors the different Jobs for better control of simultaneous long operations.

Installation

Prassi PrimoCD Pro comes as a single exetutable. After you click on it, a nice message pops up and the installer is checking setup files for corruption and possible virus infection. During the installation procedure you will be asked to choose the installation directory. After that PrimoCD Pro setup gives you a detailed report about installation files and where they are keeped. You will notice that "PxHelper.vxd" installed into \WINDOWS\SYSTEM\IOSUBSYS\ folder.

Actually PrimoCD can be work with WinASPI layer but Prassi says "..Under both Windows 95/98 or Windows NT, the PxHelper drivers maximize the SCSI performance and perform the File System blocking while recording..". It enables several other possibilities to PrimoCD as changing CDRom-CDR/W Windows settings inside PrimoCD...

I had problems with "PxHelper.vxd" cause it my Teac 532E-A showed 2 times into PrimoCD so i decided to work with WinASPI. It also screwed up the aspi layer in our Win2000 pro installation, but that was easily fixed by the OS itself after the reboot...

I started PrimoCD and i got a message that PxHelper did not load and Prassi PrimoCD could work without it (could be nice to make that screen not apear every time you run PrimoCD with WinASPI layer..).

After pressing ok you see the main window of Prassi's PrimoCD Pro which is devided into 3 main windows. The Drives window, the Jobs window and the right window into which all jobs take place. You can also add the log activity window to monitor all current activities. This log records all user actions and system responses during the recording process by time of occurrence. You can see all possible Error Codes and then figure what was the problem. PrimoCD manual has a full list of possible error codes so if something come up you can see what the cause of the problem is...

Into Drives window (left top) you can see all possible CD Rom, CDR/W, DVD Rom devices that are present in the system. If you right click on them you can choose from: Disc Explore and drive properties, Open/Close Tray and select/deselect reader & recorder. (Note : select/desect reader & recorder apear only when a job is started otherwise it stays grayed out.)




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