In order to create a CD, CDRW or DVD disc that is only viewable once a
password is entered, it's going to require that the contents of the
disc are first encrypted before being stored onto the disc. This way
an intelligent user can't simply "browse" outside of the root folder
of the disc to obtain access to the files they want. You also don't
want to force the user of the disc to have to load special software on
their PC in order to access the disc (or maybe this is only for your
PC). I'm going to list a couple of different options for password
protecting removable media:
"The SecurDataStor product line is designed to provide a
comprehensive software security solution that manages and controls
access to sensitive information that you need to share internally and
externally. With its end-to-end protection of sensitive business
information, SecurDataStor products protect sensitive information when
used by the originator, stored locally on a hard drive or file server,
and when shared. Users can safely share sensitive information across
different Microsoft® Windows® operating systems, over different
network and firewall technologies, and across different forms of
removable media. After you have shared the information, it remains
protected while the recipients or third parties are using it. They do
not need to possess their own copy of the software to access and use
The SecurDataStor product comes in three different versions - Basic,
Premium and Platinum. I would recommend the Premium as it includes the
CDR plug-in. It retails for $99 on their website.
Information about the CDR plugin specifically is available here:
Excerpt: "SecurMedia is ideal for sharing all types and forms of
sensitive information on PC removable storage media including audio,
video, documents, spreadsheets, and presentations. The
SecurMedia/SecurWebCD plug-in is compatible with all Microsoft®
Windows® operating systems, including Windows 98 SE, ME®, 2000®, XP®
(Professional and Home versions), and Windows NT® 4.0 and higher."
Another option would be to simply use WINZIP (http://www.winzip.com)
to create a self-extracting executable of the entire contents of the
disc that is password protected. You could have this self-extracting
file set to autorun when the disc is inserted. Only problem with this
solution is that the contents must first be completely extracted to
the user's hard drive before whatever is on the disc can be
Here's a few words on the password security of self-extracting zip
To create a password-protected self-extracting Zip file, simply use
password protection on the standard Zip file being used. WinZip®
Self-Extractor will automatically create a password-protected
self-extracting Zip file; the user will be prompted for the password
when the self-extracting Zip file is run. Unless the correct password
is supplied, the files will not be extracted.
If the standard Zip file is not password-protected, then the
self-extracting Zip file won't be password-protected either.
To create a password-protected standard Zip file using WinZip, choose
Password from the Options menu and specify a password before adding
files to the Zip file.
About Password Security
WinZip uses the industry standard Zip 2.0 encryption format. Password
protecting files in a Zip file provides a measure of protection
against casual users who don't have the password and are trying to
determine the contents of your files.
There are several other ways to encrypt the files that can be stored
on a removable media, but the two mentioned above are probably the
best options as they don't require the user to decrypt a single file
at a time and/or load a piece of software on their computer in order
to access it. I've placed some links to other encryption products at
the end of this answer. If you goal is to simply require a password on
a CD that will ONLY be used on YOUR pc and you don't mind loading
encryption/decryption software on the computer, please let me know and
I'll make some more suggestions for you.
Some things you simply might not be able to password protect in the
way you want - like audio cds and/or authentic DVD movies. You may
have to play around with the different software packages to find one
that works best for your needs.
I hope this helps to answer your questions. Please don't hesitate to
ask for clarification if I can be of further assistance on this
question -- I'll be happy to conduct further research if necessary.
Password Protection System - CD Edition
PGP Desktop Encryption