Microsoft details native VHD and ISO mounting support for Windows 8

Microsoft revealed on Monday that it is planning to natively support the mounting of both VHD and ISO files within Windows 8.

ISO’s are typically used by software vendors to distribute their products but have also been used by pirates to distribute films and cracked software over the year. Windows 8 now supports the native ability to simply mount an ISO as if it was a CDROM. “You can simply access the contents of the ISO file without needing either needing to burn a new disc or needing to find/download/install additional software just to logically access the ISO,” explained Rajeev Nagar, Windows 8 group program manager on the Storage & File Systems team in a blog post on Monday.

The process of mounting an ISO is simple in Windows 8. Microsoft surfaces an additional ribbon tab in the Windows 8 Explorer UI which allows users to mount of burn a selected ISO file. Once the file is mounted, Windows 8 creates a virtual CDROM/DVD drive that provides access to the contents of the ISO. Once users are finished accessing the ISO it can simply be ejected in the same way as a a real CD or DVD would.

ISO mounting in Windows 8

Microsoft will also natively support VHD files in Windows 8. VHDs will appear as a virtual HDD. Windows 8 will provide a drive letter to a selected VHD. “You can then work with the virtual hard disk just like any other file storage in your system, whether you are modifying, adding or removing files,” explains Nagar.

VHD support in Windows 8