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Checking for Protection



Up until the mid '90s the primary method for CD protection was to use a combination of disc-check verification and unique serial keys. However, with the advent of consumer-grade CD-burners, the industry began to use stricter forms of CD protection to minimize the effectiveness of 1:1 disc copying. SafeDisc and SecuROM were the most popular protection forms of the era, but many other protection types were introduced (all of which are explored in this guide).


The tools in the links above allow you to analyze and scan discs, files, or sectors for known protection types. These tools can often identify the version of the protection method as well. As a best-practice, it's typically a good idea to check the disc with at least two of the three tools to get an accurate reading. ProtectionID is generally accepted as the most effective tool, but the other tools can occasionally identify a protection that ProtectionID misses.


  • ProtectionID may need to be adjusted to run using Windows 95 Compatibility Mode in some versions of Windows Vista and Windows 7.
  • SecuROM is generally best identified using "sector scanning". It can be confirmed using CDMage's 'Scan for Corruption' feature (which typically reports at least '1' medium error near the end of the image).

Submission Information

Only include the information that pertains to your dump AND that you personally verified.

Catalog Data

  • Dump Name
  • Disc Title
  • Disc Number
  • Disc ID / Serial
  • Category
  • Region
  • Languages
  • Barcode
  • Version #
  • Edition
  • Comments

Ringcode Data

  • Mastering Code (laser branded/etched)
  • Mastering SID Code
  • Toolstamp or Mastering Code (engraved/stamped)
  • Mould SID Code
  • Additional Mould Text

Dump Data

  • CDMage Error Count
  • Write Offset
  • Cuesheet
  • Primary Volume Descriptor (PVD)
  • Copy Protection with Version #
  • Folder Contents (Demos, Patches)
  • ClrMamePro Hash Data (Dir2Dat)
Personal tools