Occasionally, I have the need to download something of the Web that comes in disc image form. New Linux distributions, usually, which I can then try out. Sometimes, however, I don’t want to burn the image to a disc in order to try it out, so I’ll use VirtualBox to create a virtual computer and use the disc image that way. Other times, I don’t even need that; simply being able to mount the image as if it were an actual disc is enough. In the past, I’ve used AcetoneISO2 or Furius ISO Mount, and they’ve worked well enough. But what if the disc image isn’t in a standard format (AcetoneISO2 is unable to mount multi sector images)? Enter a program that’s new to me called Easier Mount Tool.
Easier Mount Tool is really simple. It’s a python utility that takes advantage of tools more than likely already installed on your system. In fact, the list of requirements necessary to run it is small: Python, PyGTK, beesu, gksu or sudo (for obtaining administrator privileges), and… well, that’s it. Once you’ve downloaded the available archive, extract it and navigate to the “emt” folder. Once there, simply launch the Python script (called emt.py), and you’re in business.
The main interface to Easier Mount Tool shows four options: Mount, Unmount, Convert and Close. Simple and exactly what you’d think. If your disc image is in ISO format, simply click the Mount button, navigate to the image and select it. You’ll also need to create a mount point – an empty folder that Easier Mount Tool can use to mount the image – so create one (it can be on your desktop or anywhere else), then click OK and the image will be mounted. From that point, your computer will treat the mount point as an actual, physical CD, and you can interact with it as you regularly would.
When you’re finished, simply click the Unmount button, then navigate to the mount point and choose it. It will be unmounted, you can delete the folder and the disc image itself, assuming you’re finished with it, and close the program.
The third option – Convert – is really handy. By itself, Easier Mount Tool is only able to mount ISO images, but it does have the ability to convert bin, cdi, daa, gbi, mdf, nrg and uif images to the ISO format, which provides access to those formats, even if Easier Mount Tool itself is unable to mount them. Converting an image is just as simple as mounting or unmounting one. Navigate to the image you wish to convert, choose a name and location for the newly converted ISO, and click to convert. The process is quick (although large files obviously take longer than small files), and when you’re done, the new ISO file is ready for burning or mounting.
Easier Mount Tool isn’t just a catchy name; it’s the reality of this tool. Mounting disc images is something that can be accomplished with the Terminal simply by typing in a string of commands, but Easier Mount Tool really does take the complexity out of the process. Point and click is the rule of the day, and in that regard it absolutely succeeds. Sure, it would be nice if it was able to mount more disc image types directly, or could convert from more formats (or to different formats than simply ISO), but that isn’t the aim of the tool, at least as far as I can see. Easier Mount Tool aims at being a simple tool for mounting disc images, and in that is succeeds admirably.