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Converting bin/cue to iso in OS X

Today I found myself with another pair of those darn .bin/.cue files that Apple’s Disk Utility won’t open, burn or convert. In the past I’ve always had to go through a number of steps to convert and burn using Toast, which is fine, but kind of a pain that I choose not to engage in any longer. After reading through articles, forum and comment threads I realized I could’ve ditched the Toast method years ago, using bchunk and Terminal, egads!

I don’t consider myself to be particularly “tech-ie”, I use the terminal for very basic tasks when my Mac refuses to cooperate any other way (eg. CD/DVD’s that won’t eject, Trash that never wants to leave, etc.) I deal with .bin/.cue files rarely, so I thought it would be a good idea to write down the following steps in plain English for the non-techies out there. Also by the time I’m confronted with a pair of .bin/.cue files again, I’ll have probably forgotten the commands.

If you’re new to the Mac or never used the terminal and you’re scratching your head because you’ve a .bin/.cue file you want to open, this should help:

First off, in order for this to work, you need to have your Xcode Developer Tools installed. You can find them on your Leopard (or Tiger) Installation disc or you can download it free, directly from Apple’s Developer site: but you will need your Apple ID. If you’re running Leopard and not Snow Leopard, be sure you download the correct version as the most recent Xcode is only compatible with Snow Leopard. (I followed the steps below running 10.5.8 on an Intel, but this should work on 10.4 and on the PPC as well.)

1. Xcode Developer Tools should be installed.

2. Download bchunk from (just right click and download/save file):

3.  If your Mac hasn’t unzipped the file automatically, extract the .zip file by double clicking it and copy it to your home folder:
/Users/[your username]

4. Go to your Applications/Utilities folder, open Terminal and type (you can copy and paste):

sudo cp bchunk /usr/bin/
sudo chmod a+x /usr/bin/bchunk

After I did this, Terminal asked me for my administrator password, go ahead and type it in and hit Return/Enter.

5. Copy your .bin and .cue files to your home folder (where bchunk now also resides), and in Terminal type:

bchunk input.bin input.cue output.iso

In place of input.bin and input.cue type the names of the .bin and .cue files you want to convert)

6. You’ll see your .bin file convert to an .iso file in the Terminal window and you’re done. You can mount the .iso onto your Desktop now, or burn it in Disk Utility/iTunes or Toast depending upon what kind of files are enclosed.

Thanks to Gavin McLelland’s post: and James N, Sears for compiling bchunk so I didn’t have to: