Ripping (Copying) Music CDs

Media Player isn’t just about playing CDs. The real idea is to build up a library of digital media on your hard drive, from which you can create custom playlists and music CDs. If you already own some music CDs, ripping a few CDs will be a great way to start creating your personal media library. Though the term “rip” might sound like something bad, it’s not. It simply means to “copy,” and no harm will come to the CD when you rip songs from it to your media library.

When you rip a CD, you store a copy of each song from the CD on your hard drive. That song is in a format that’s more suitable for computers than the song that’s on the CD. You can put the original CD back in its case, and leave it there so it doesn’t get scratched up. Play the songs straight from your PC, or make your own CDs to play the songs in a stereo. Keep the original CD as a backup in case you accidentally delete some songs you’ve copied.

Ripping CDs is easy, as you’ll see. But you need to make a few decisions up front, such as where you want to put the songs, how you want them titled, what format you want them stored in, and so forth. The sections that follow look at all of your options.

Options for ripping CDs

To choose options for how you want to copy CDs to your hard disk, use the Rip Music tab in Media Player’s Options dialog box. To get to those options:

1. Open Windows Media Player (if it isn’t already open).
2. Insert an audio CD in the drive and click the drive in the Library ...

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