One of tonight’s tasks was to burn a freshly downloaded Fedora 10 DVD ISO image. My dad gave me some blank LightScribe DVDs a while back, so I thought I’d give them a try, not having done so before.
After a quick look around it appears the only LightScribe labelling software available for Linux is proprietary. LaCie provide the software in RPM packages which is nice if you are a Fedora user like me. (Apparently they have tested it with the other major distros, which is nice to see.) It installed fine under Fedora 10 beta, which was a nice surprise given that it was apparently written for Fedora 5. It didn’t install a menu entry, but firing up the “LaCie Lightscribe Labeller”, ’4L-gui’, provided a reasonably nice experience.
I grabbed some DVD media artwork from the Fedora art team. There were two labels in each image file, so I had to pick one and chop it in half with the GIMP. I then cropped it to remove the alignment patterns, and then did an autocrop to crop to the edge of the DVD label. Then it was a simple matter of importing it in the 4L-gui and selecting ‘fit image height to disc’.
Writing the disc label took a bewilderingly long 15 minutes. I suppose it is effectively doing the same thing as burning a CD, but it’s a big wait for little reward. The inscribed label is a hazy monochrome image that is below the surface of the disc.
In future I think I’ll just use a pen. Nevertheless, it’s interesting to the see the improvement in the quality of Linux software provided by a hardware vendor. It would be even better if they would free the code. This would enable distros to incorporate the software into the main repos, making the experience a bit more streamlined and integrated.