Autorun Programs

Discussion in 'Mac Programming' started by paul.b.davis, May 3, 2009.

  1. paul.b.davis macrumors 6502

    paul.b.davis

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    Location:
    Over the hills and far away...
    #1
    Ok, so I have been working on an electronic press kit for my band (take a listen, the link is in my sig) and it has taken the form of an offline web page.

    To promote easier viewing of the press kit for the sake of less than tech savvy individuals, I would like to include an autorun program on the discs we send that would automatically open up the index.html file on the disc.

    Are there programs available for free that I can just modify for my needs or do I need to write something new?

    Also, I would like it to auto open the file on OS X and Windows machines (Linux would be nice too, but not as important). How can I do this?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. lee1210 macrumors 68040

    lee1210

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2005
    Location:
    Dallas, TX
    #2
    I would strongly discourage this. It seems "cool", but in general is bad for security. I don't know about the windows side, but on the OS X side, this thread:
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=474334
    discussed making a disk image that has a custom display in the finder that would make it easy for a user to figure out what to do. Once you have the disk image, you can burn it to a CD.

    Again, i don't know how to make this work in windows. I'm aware of autorun.ini, but i think microsoft is going to disable autorun soon for security reasons anyway:
    http://blogs.technet.com/msrc/archi...dows-to-meet-changes-in-threat-landscape.aspx

    If you're going to make labels for the discs (you didn't say), it could have the 2 step instructions for accessing the content.

    On the mac side, there is an option to auto-open a folder laid out how you want. This article discusses that:
    http://db.tidbits.com/article/8464

    That is a good balance between usability and security, in my opinion. Doing this all in a way that works well on OS X and Windows might be tough, though.

    -Lee

    EDIT: I guess autorun will still happen on CDs... but it still seems dangerous, in my book.
     
  3. numero macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    OR
    #3
    Back in the OS 9 days Apple used to have a way to auto run a removable disk. I believe this was part of QuickTime's settings. The feature resulted in the last Mac virus that I am aware of -- approx. 1997 or 1998. The virus came in on a zip, floppy or syquest drive and then had fun propagating to other removable disks and any network volumes it could reach. Anyway, a long way of saying that auto run is bad. That being said, it is available on Windows. :)

    I would recommend getting Toast. You can make a hybrid CD with it. Mac users would only see a Mac disk and Windows users would only see their files. On the Mac side you can use a background picture on the disk's main window that could have "double click this" type of instructions. You can set the default window view to "icon" and then set the icons to "preview" and control their size -- whatever you want to set the viewing experience for Mac users.

    On the Windows partition you can set the autorun.ini file to do whatever you want for Windows users. Sorry, no fancy picture background or icon options.
     
  4. Sayer macrumors 6502a

    Sayer

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #4
    There's a way to do it for an app bundle, but it requires the HFS+ disk format to work, and thus won't work on Windows. You can make a dual format disk image with HFS+ and FAT32 separately. They would each need their own copy of content and auto run configs.

    There is an app to make custom-content-specific web browsers based on Safari/WebKit.

    And the app to set auto-run is called "AutoOpen" - I use it at work to start up internet setup software after a handoff from a web-based service I also work on.

    The whole "its a virus" scare tactics is silly. There are plenty of other mechanisms to get software to run on a Mac these days, and most of them all require social engineering to coerce the user into actually starting the process.
     
  5. paul.b.davis thread starter macrumors 6502

    paul.b.davis

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    Location:
    Over the hills and far away...
    #5
    What is the app to make the custom content browsers?
     
  6. Consultant macrumors G5

    Consultant

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    #6
    If the user put the disk in, they won't have a hard time figuring out that they need to double click on a file.
     
  7. paul.b.davis thread starter macrumors 6502

    paul.b.davis

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    Location:
    Over the hills and far away...
    #7
    Well we want this to be as user friendly as possible, and it must work on Windows and Mac machines.

    Is there any way to make an autorun.ini (or .inf) file on a Mac? I found programs, but they are all for Windows and I do not have a Windows machine.
     

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