Mac ISO burn tip - How to burn an ISO image to a CD on Mac OS X

Mac ISO burning FAQ: How do I burn an ISO image on Mac OS X?

It seems like lately all I'm doing is burning stuff to a CD or DVD on my Mac OS X system, first backups, and now I'm burning ISO images.

If you've never burned an ISO image to a CD or DVD on a Mac before, it's pretty easy. Here's how I just burned a Fedora ISO image on my MacBook Pro, which is a Mac OS X 10.4.10 system.

Mac ISO burn tip - How to burn an ISO image on Mac OS X

First, of course, is to have an ISO image ready to burn on your local disk, or a network share. Once you have that, just follow these steps. (Note that, to date, I've always burned ISO images to a CD. I assume you follow the same process to burn to a DVD, but I don't know that for sure.)

  1. Start the Mac OS X Disk Utility (click Applications, then Utilities, then Disk Utility).
  2. Drag your ISO icon to the left sidebar of the Disk Utility application. (Figure 1 below.)
  3. On that left sidebar, select the ISO you just created.
  4. From the menu bar choose Images, then Burn...
  5. You're prompted to insert a disk, as shown in Figure 2 below.
  6. After inserting the disk you're prompted one more time to proceed with the burn (Figure 3).

Mac ISO burn - screenshots

Images you'll see during the ISO burn process are shown next.

Figure 1: Shows the Mac Disk Utility, with my Fedora ISO file selected.

Figure 2: The prompt to insert a disk.

Figure 3: You get one last chance to cancel.

Figure 4: The Mac Disk Utility progress bar as the disk is burned.

All of these ISO images are from the Disk Utility on Mac OS X version 10.4.10.

Mac ISO burning - summary

That's all I had to do to burn an ISO image to CD on Mac OS X. I hope these "Mac ISO burning" steps and images are helpful to anyone else going through this ISO-burning process.


A reader posted a comment that came across a little too much like an ad for me, so I removed it, but their general suggestion was good: There are software tools for the Mac OS X platform to make it a little easier to burn CDs and DVDs. (I personally didn't find this process hard, just hard to remember.)

Here are a few of those. First, here's an open source CD/DVD burning tool for Mac OS X named Burn. I haven't checked it out yet, but I'll give it a spin the next time I need to burn something.

Next, I started to compile a list of Mac DVD burning applications, but this page has a nice list going, so I won't bother to repeat what they already have.

Finally, going in the other direction, I also ran across an open source tool named HandBrake that can be used for DVD-ripping.

As one more quick follow-up, I recently burned several CentOS ISO images to DVD on an iMac running Mac OS X 10.5.x using these instructions, and they all burned just fine.

A lot of people have asked me to include links to Mac OS X tools that can be used to burn an ISO image to CD or DVD, so I've compiled the following two lists, one for open source tools, and another for commercial CD and DVD burning and ripping tools.

Open source tools for CD and DVD burning and ripping:

Commercial tools for CD and DVD burning and ripping (listed in alphabetical order, by company):

If you know of any other tools that should be added to this list just let me know, and I will add it.


Great article! Thanks so much! I used it to burn a windows 7 ISO on a mac!


Great article! And so simple. You should see some of the super complicated solutions posted for this same issue. I knew there had to be some built-in functionality that could handle burning ISO images. And without necessarily installing third-party apps.