No-CD crack

A No-CD crack is a modified executable file or a special "byte patcher" program that removes built-in CD check mechanisms allowing the user to run computer software without having to insert their required CD-ROM.

This act is a form of software cracking. No-CD cracks can be found on the Internet from various reverse engineering websites or file sharing networks. No-CD cracks have legal uses, such as creating backups of legally owned software (a user right by law in many countries) or avoiding the inconvenience of placing a CD or DVD-ROM in the drive every time the software is being used, although this can be used likewise to circumvent software laws by allowing the execution of full versions of non-legally owned applications or time-limited trials of the applications without the original disc.

In addition to cracked executable files or byte patchers, CD protection can sometimes be thwarted by producing a mini image containing only enough of the software's CD-ROM contents needed to bypass protection. This image can then be mounted with a disk image emulator such as Daemon Tools to trick the user's computer into believing the disk image is the software's physical CD-ROM and it is in the drive. Some programs, however, attempt to discover such disk image emulators and will refuse to work if one is found. Other programs exist that attempt to hide the presence of disk image emulators from such protected software.

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