There are a wealth of third party CD Burning utilities out there on the market though not everyone has one on their machine. Windows XP can natively burn files to CD without any additional software HOWEVER it can't create a bootable CD. I'm upgrading the BIOS on my machine to enable me to install Windows Vista.
The BIOS upgrade for my laptop requires me to create a bootable CD containing an ISO image. I visited the manufacturer's website and downloaded both the BIOS upgrade and installation instructions. All seemed well. My frustration came when I opened the documentation to find that it assumed I had a third party CD Burning utility to burn the ISO image onto a bootable CD.
Microsoft supply a handy utility named CDBurn for download free of charge from our website. The process is pretty straight forward as you need to download the Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit and install it on your PC - it works perfectly well on Windows XP.
Note: you need to be logged in with Administrator rights to install the resource kit.
Once you've installed the resource kit start a command shell by selecting "Run" from the Start menu and enter "cmd" into the "Open" dialog followed by "OK" (or hit the "enter" key). If you installed the resource kit in the default location then type "cd c:\Program Files\Windows Resource Kits\Tools" followed by Enter.
Type "cdburn" followed by Enter from the command prompt to run the utility - the instructions for CDburn will be displayed on the screen.
CDBurn itself is just a single file so if it makes life easier for you then you can copy it to the same directory as the target ISO file. For my system I entered the command "cdburn f: B170.iso" where my CD drive was assigned to letter "F" and the ISO file I wanted to burn was located in the same directory as the CDburn utility.
The ISO image burnt onto the CD in a couple of minutes as the BIOS upgrade was a very small file. You can use CDBurn to burn any ISO (bootable CD) and the majority of these are much larger than a BIOS upgrade so may take longer to burn.