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[tutorial] Backup original AoK/AoC CDs (no cracks needed)

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[tutorial] Backup original AoK/AoC CDs (no cracks needed)

Postby  BugA_the_Great » Thu Jul 15, 2010 8:14 pm

Image
With special thanks to bcn_246 from Club MyCE for showing how to make backup copies of original, protected discs.

If you have the original copy of "Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings" (AoK) and its expansion "Age of Empires II: The Conquerors" (AoC), I guess you thought of making a backup at least once for all these years. Discs may scratch or become unreadable over time, or may even get lost (we all have friends that tend to forget returning things ;) ), forcing you to buy the game again. It`s pretty cheap, true, but there may be a better solution - a backup copy, and yes, it`s possible to copy your original CD so it stays original (no need for cracks) - it`s fine when you do it for your personal use, while sharing these copies may be considered software piracy and it`s against the law in many countries around the world.

Back on subject, if you own original AoK/AoC discs, and would like to make backup copies just in case (or you would like to avoid putting the CD in every time you want to play), here`s a way to do it.

Making local backup (image)

Image First, we`ll need a program called "Alcohol 120%" (15 day trial full version can be obtained from official site, here). Once you install it, it will make a new, virtual CD/DVD drive (which may be used to "mount" virtual CD/DVD, so called "image", so you don`t have to put it in your real CD/DVD player each time you want to play).

Next, you`ll need original AoK/AoC discs (you do need those if you want to back them up ;) ). Put them in your CD/DVD player (one by one, please), and repeat these step for each one of them:

    1) Start "Alcohol 120%".
    2) Click "Image Making Wizard".
    3) Set all options like this:
Image

Note: "CD/DVD Device" will be your CD/DVD device (it doesn`t have to be (F:) drive letter, it should be the letter of your CD/DVD device). "Read Speed" may be set to higher value (up to maximum), but slower speed usually means better copy (very important if we want to get exact copy of the original disc). Make sure "Datatype" is set to "SafeDisc".

    4) Click "Next", change any settings if needed, and click "Start".
Note: It may take (quite a lot) time to copy the disc (because of all the reading errors you`ll get - those are normal, and in fact represent the SafeDisc protection of original disc(s)).

Once the image making is over, you`ll end up with original copy of your AoK/AoC disc(s). Feel free to remove the disc from your real CD/DVD device.

You may now put your backups ("mount" them) into "Alcohol 120%" program using "File" > "Open", then selecting created image (.mds) files and clicking "Open". When they show up in the main program window list, just double click the desired disc (AOE2 or AGE2_X1, or whatever you named them) and it will be mounted in the virtual drive, starting the game (autorun). Because we made original copies along with SafeDisc protection, you won`t need any cracks to play the game as long as you have the correct disc inserted in "Alcohol 120%"`s virtual drive.

... you can finally put those CDs to rest a bit ;)


But, what if something happens with backuped files on your hard drive, what if you want to write them to another CD and keep them that way? It is possible, too.

Burning backup dics(s)

To write another original CD (an exact backup copy of your original CD), put a blank CD in your CD/DVD writer and follow these steps (one blank CD per game disc, and one at a time, please):

    1) Start "Alcohol 120%".
    2) Click "Image Burning Wizard".
    3) Click "Browse" and choose the image (.mds file) you would like to burn to blank disc, click "Next".
    4) Make sure you set writing options like this:
Image

Note: "CD/DVD Recorder" will be your CD/DVD device (it doesn`t have to be (F:) drive letter, it should be the letter of your CD/DVD device). "Write Speed" may be set to higher value (up to maximum), but slower speed usually means better copy (very important if we want to get exact copy of the original disc). Make sure "Write Method" is set to "RAW DAO", and "Datatype" to "SafeDisc".

    5) Click "Start".
Note: It may take (quite a lot) time to burn the disc (because of all the reading errors you`ll get - those are normal, and in fact represent the SafeDisc protection of original disc(s)).

When the program finishes, you`ll have a perfect 1:1 copy of your original AoK/AoC disc(s), which you may use in order to protect your original discs from damaging. Just remember, making backups for personal use is fine (as you do own original disc), but sharing copied CDs around is a software piracy... ;)

Enjoy playing!
Image
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Re: [tutorial] Backup original AoK/AoC CDs (no cracks needed

Postby  _key_ » Fri Jul 16, 2010 10:49 am

thank ya!
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Re: [tutorial] Backup original AoK/AoC CDs (no cracks needed

Postby  omega » Tue Mar 22, 2011 10:17 am

it`s fine when you do it for your personal use, while sharing these copies may be considered software piracy and it`s against the law in many countries around the world.

It can't be piracy, AOC's copyright ran out years ago.
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Re: [tutorial] Backup original AoK/AoC CDs (no cracks needed

Postby  [EIF]BokiSergy » Tue Mar 22, 2011 11:19 am

Nice tut ;)
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love songs:
"Aganju": http://youtu.be/J71FLwVNps8
"Girl from Ipanema: http://youtu.be/UJkxFhFRFDA
"One Man's Dream": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ubTveCihjoQ
;)
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Re: [tutorial] Backup original AoK/AoC CDs (no cracks needed

Postby  RoR_BzH » Tue Mar 22, 2011 11:27 am

  22 Mar 2011, 09:17 GMT » omega wrote:
It can't be piracy, AOC's copyright ran out years ago.


go tell that to microsoft, gl
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Re: [tutorial] Backup original AoK/AoC CDs (no cracks needed

Postby  omega » Wed Mar 23, 2011 9:53 am

copyright 1997-2001
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Re: [tutorial] Backup original AoK/AoC CDs (no cracks needed

Postby  superesky » Wed May 04, 2011 9:35 pm

Hmm... When I try to double click the mds files with alcohol, nothing happens. :( Am I doing something wrong?
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Re: [tutorial] Backup original AoK/AoC CDs (no cracks needed

Postby  BugA_the_Great » Tue Sep 06, 2011 7:58 am

Hm, and what are you trying to do, mount (insert) a virtual disc into a virtual drive? You can also right click the disc image in Alcohol main window file list and select Mount on Device.
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Re: [tutorial] Backup original AoK/AoC CDs (no cracks needed

Postby  Fuzer » Tue Sep 06, 2011 8:08 am

Necro Thread detected.
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Re: [tutorial] Backup original AoK/AoC CDs (no cracks needed

Postby  Skimmey » Fri Mar 16, 2012 10:27 pm

I followed the instructions to make a local backup (image). and burning backup disk(s) using Alcohol 120 and when i try to play the game form the disk it brings up the menu where you choose click to play and then it brings up the loading screen. after this an error message appears that states that i need to insert the correct CD-ROM.

I am not technologically inclined so i do not understand a lot of the lingo used.
The only parts of the instructions that confused me are the parts where it states to set "Datatype" to "SafeDisc".
i did not see this option.
Also on making a local backup step 3)
3) Set all options like this:

image is all i see there is no actual image.
the same thing occurs for step four on burning back up disks.
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