CyberLink unleashes Power2Go 8 with free cut-down Essentials version
Taiwanese software giant CyberLink has released version 8 of its all-encompassing disc-burning suite, Power2Go. Comprising software for burning data and media to CD, DVD and Blu-ray, Power2Go 8 adds a new tool for creating system recovery discs that allows the user to back up and restore data outside of Windows, plus the ability to mount virtual disk images as if they were physical drives.
Power2Go 8 also sees the introduction of a cut-down free version of the software. Power2Go 8 Essential is essentially a 15-day trial of the full Platinum edition of the suite that reverts to an “Essential” edition capable of only a handful of tasks after the trial expires.
The full version of Power2Go 8 brings together a plethora of burning tools under one roof: data, photo, music, video and system recovery. Interestingly, Blu-ray support is limited to data and photo gallery discs – there’s no option to burn video Blu-ray discs with this release.
The major new feature in version 8 is the new system recovery disc tool, which is restricted to the Platinum edition of the software. This allows you to back up Windows, your programs and data to a series of discs that can be used to restore your PC should disaster strike. Any discs created during the trial period will only function for 15 days, so make sure you register before burning one if you intend to use the feature long-term.
Free – to a degree
All of these tools are available to Power2Go 8 Essential users for the duration of the 15-day trial. Once this expires, however, the program reverts to basic functionality: you can create data CDs, DVDs and Blu-ray discs, burn and rip music CDs (but not WMA or MP3 CDs), copy discs and use the tool’s drag-and-drop desktop gadget.
What you won’t be able to do is burn any form of video CD or DVD, save and burn disc images, choose between ISO/UDF or take advantage of Power2Go 8’s simulated burning feature. You’ll also find a number of accessories are disabled too, including the Audio Converter, CD Extra, Mixed Mode CD, Virtual Drive and Label Print tool.
Power2Go 8 also comes with WaveEditor 2, a “sample-level precision waveform editor” that provides a multi-timeline mixer for editing multiple audio tracks simultaneously. Again, this functions as a 15-day trial.
Power2Go 8 Essential is available now for Windows XP, 7 and Vista. It installs as a 15-day trial of the fully functional Platinum version before reverting to the basic Essentials version with flags to upgrade whenever the user attempts to launch a non-supported tool. The full version retails for $69.95, with a slightly cut-down Deluxe edition also available for $20 less. This version omits the system rescue option and the ability to burn video DVDs with Dolby Audio.