Summary: Free tool to build images from HFS volumes. The image file can then be used to "hybridate" an ISO image (to make a hybrid HFS/ISO CD-ROM) or burnt as such (to make a plain Macintosh CD-ROM).


Hybridator is a free utility to produce on a PC HFS CD-ROMs (CD-ROMs holding a plain Macintosh magnetic volume), from a real (hardware) Macintosh drive.
Let's say that you have a CD burner on your PC and want to burn a CD from a Macintosh magnetic disk, for a friend using a Macintosh.
The HFS image made by Hybridator can also be bundled with an ISO image to make a hybrid data CD-ROM containing both an ISO partition and a HFS partition (that is a data CD-ROM which can be read on a PC or on a Macintosh).
The HFS partition built by Hybridator is fully independent and doesn't share data files with the ISO partition. If you need this feature, our program MacImage allows you to build images where files are shared between both views (ISO view to be seen by the PC user and HFS view to be seen by the Macintosh user).
The solution we present on this page is less performant, because you have to duplicate everything (each partition is self-contained). On the other hand, one doesn't always need the full 650-MB capacity of CD-ROMs.

User Interface

This program is coded as a 32-bit application for Windows 95/98 and Windows NT/2000.

Source of HFS data

The HFS data can come from a file (image of a HFS volume you made before with Hybridator, or CD-ROM image produced by Toast on the Macintosh), from a Macintosh HD floppy disk, from a magnetical or magneto-optical disk or from a CD-ROM.
When the source HFS volume contains several partitions, you have to choose the partition you want to copy. Nothing particular restrains to make multipartitionned HFS volumes on a CD-ROM, but no driver I ever saw would load them. As Hybridator is a tool aimed at the production of CD-ROMs, we only copy data partitions, and not the driver partition or other private data areas.


HFS data can be copied directly to the ISO image. You can also specify the name of an HFS image file, to exploit the data later on. If you ask your CD-ROM premastering software to burn this image (saying this is an ISO image), most will happily burn it as a HFS-only volume. See our CD-ROM FAQ for informations about several popular packages.


Hybridator is a free utility. You can download your copy from our downloading page. This is meant to show the know-how we have in the domain of the Macintosh disk system and of Macintosh to PC data transfers.

Current Version

The version of our program currently available on this Web site is the version 1.00. It runs under Windows 95/98/ME and Windows NT/2000. We added support for IDE/ATAPI CD-ROM drives under Windows NT and a better support for multiple partitions and floppies.
Hybridator rebuilds the partition and strips the driver from the volume (Macintosh CD-ROM don't include their drivers, unlike other removable magnetic media). Next version will include a mode to make a plain copy of the medium.
See also MacImage, an utility to build CD-ROM (hybrid or HFS). With MacImage, you don't need any more to have a Macintosh-formatted physical disk and you can share data files between the ISO view and the HFS view of the CD-ROM.

Sample Work Session to Build a Macintosh CD-ROM on a PC

To help prospective users of Hybridator, we publish a first walkthrough showing all operations to build a Macintosh CD-ROM and a second for Hybrid CD-ROMs. See also the more general page on the creation of Macintosh CD-ROMs with MacImage.

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