The Ubu Web 
See Dee Plus Tech Support Page

I. Introduction || II. Tech Checklist || III. Quicktime Software
IV. Audio CD Players || V. Macintosh Info || VI. Windows Info
VII. Feedback Forms || VIII. Folly of Youth Notes || IX. Beeboys Notes

I. Introduction

See Dee + (pronounced "seedy plus") is a method used to format an audio CD so that it carries ROM data as well as audio. Only Ubu Projex uses the name "see dee +." We do this because we are difficult so-and-so's and we refuse to change with the times. The method is also called "CD Extra" which is the Sony initiative or "Multisession" which is the technical description.

Note: The term "CD Plus" is evidently a trademark of a chain of CD retail stores in Canada. It should not be used as a term to refer to Enhanced CD music CD-ROMs.

"Enhanced CD" is a generic term that covers both Multisession and Active Audio format methods. Be aware that all these names are loosely used, and often interchanged. It's confused and/or confusing.

Multisession (See Dee +, or CD Extra) is the more "elegant" solution but the method requires significantly more physical space on the disk to accomplish the session segregation, almost 90 meg more than Active Audio. This is not a consumer concern. There is no chance of an audio player accessing the digital information, which, conversely, is a consumer concern. The rom drive hardware must be physically capable of reading the disk and the software drivers need to be reasonably up-to-date.
Active Audio is also known as the Pre-Gap or Hidden method because it "hides" the ROM data in Track 0 of the disk. Since audio cd players look to Track 1 for their first read they skip the ROM data. It's a clever solution but if you mess with the REW or FF buttons long and hard enough you might be able to access the digital information with your cd audio player. This is not a Good Idea. The ROM drive hardware must be physically capable of reading the disk.

In the Wintel World lots of computers came with ROM drives that are hardware-incapable of reading either multisession or active audio disks. Others are capable of active audio reads but not multisession. Roughly the same proportion are vice-versa incapable. In the Apple World things are much better. As per. We have provided a Tech Checklist to step though the process of determining what's what in your life.

Pere Ubu's FOLLY OF YOUTH SEE DEE + and BEACH BOYS SEE DEE + are multisession disks. The first pressings of EREWHON by David Thomas and two pale boys are active audio. Later pressings are multisession. Multisession disks are identified by an "M" printed on the pink portion of the label. For an explanation you need to go elsewhere.

This page is an ongoing experiment in providing technical support over the Web and is updated as we learn more. If you see that some of our information is out of date or wrong or needs supplementing please contact us. If you're having problems and can't find the answer on this page (or on one of the pages we're linked to) use the Problems & Questions Feedback Form to submit your problem to us and David will do his best to help you. If you encountered problems and solved them yourself, help us help others by telling us about it using the Solutions Feedback Form.

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II. Tech Checklist

  1. Is your CD-ROM drive hardware-capable of reading multisession or active audio disks? This is the place to start.

    Mac Users: The answer is straightforward with Apple ROM drives. Even then issues arise with certain configurations. If you don't have an Apple ROM drive or you aren't using Apple CD-ROM Software then you've got to do some investigation.

    Wintel Users: Though most recently manufactured CD-ROM drives can read Enhanced CD disks with the proper software drivers, many older models can't, period. Others require an update to their firmware. It's been estimated that up to 50% of existing wintel CD-ROM drives can't read Enhanced CD disks. Sony Online's CD Extra pages provide a helpful list of multisession compatible drives as well as a list of technical support contacts for ROM drive manufacturers.
    NOTE! Corel offers an excellent and free Windows program called "Music Advisor" that tells you if your drive can read multisession or active audio disks. It's about 90K zipped. Start with this. The site is also useful for a detailed overview and for troubleshooting specifics.
    There are other Windows issues.

  2. Is the interface between your computer and your ROM drive functioning properly?

    Mac users: With external drives make sure that the SCSI chain is properly connected and terminated. Read the <gasp> manual. There's a certain amount of voodoo attached to scsi chains. In the Reference section of FWB's Software And Support Resources page is a page of links to information and tips concerning SCSI.

    Windows users: With a SCSI interface make sure you have the latest software drivers and that those drivers support multisession or active audio. The Corel Music Adviser page is a good source of interface related information for pcs.

  3. Is the software driver that your computer uses to address your rom drive up to date & capable?

    Mac Users:Use the latest version of Apple CD-ROM Software.

    Wintel users: Contact the manufacturer for an update or search the usual online sources. Have fun. Sony provides a list of contacts.
    Is the driver properly installed? Read your Windows User's Guide, pages 179-181, 557-560, 567. Win95 users aren't supposed to have these problems.
    In the Windows 95 HCL, Microsoft recommends looking for drivers in these places:
    1. The Microsoft Network: under the Windows 95 area.
    2. WWW:
    3. Gopher: gopher://
    4. FTP:
    5. Compuserve: GO MISL
    6. Microsoft Download Service (MSDL): Call the US number 206-936-6735 (no connect-time charges)
    7. If you do not have access to a modem you can get an individual driver on a disk by calling Microsoft Product Support Services
    8. If you have the CD-ROM version of Win95 you can get certain drivers from the drivers directory.

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III. Quicktime Software

Runtime versions of Quicktime for both Mac and Windows are supplied on the See Dee + discs, but newer versions of are available from Apple's Quicktime Web site or any of the many the Apple Software Update archives. The most recent release versions of Quicktime for Macs is version 2.5; for Windows it is version 2.1.2. Note that there are separate versions for Windows 3.1 (16 bit) and Windows 95/NT (32 bit). We have received a report that in order to get the full functionality of QT under a 32-bit environment, you have to install the 16-bit version and then the 32-bit over top of it. Users of all platforms are strongly advised to upgrade to the latest version as the new versions of the software fix a number of bugs.

Windows users should check out Bob Currier's "A Windows User's Guide to QuickTime" (which Bob has generously consented to let us carry on this site). Although some of Bob's information is specific to Compuserve he provides lots of info which will be useful to anyone using Quicktime on a Wintel machine.

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IV. Audio CD Players

One of the features that sets see dee + apart from earlier "mixed mode" CD formats is that audio CD players should ignore the data tracks and go straight to the first music track. However, a few (particularly older) audio CD players may not bypass the computer data but will try to "play" it. While it's very unlikely your audio cd player will do this, to be on the safe side keep the volume low until you know for sure as this digital noise could damage your speakers if played at high volume. Also be aware that if you mess around long & hard enough with the rewind or fast forward you might just get into Digital Noise Land.

A recent report noted that some audio cd players cannot skip the Active Audio partition of the EREWHON disk and count down in silence until the ROM data is passed. Specifics are located at the Ubu Projex site.

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V. Macintosh Info

A. Macintosh Computers with Apple CD-ROM Drives

If you have a Macintosh with any version of Apple's 300 or 600 series (or newer) CD-ROM drives (internal or external) to access see dee + all you will need is the latest version of Apple CD-ROM Software. (Older Apple drives such as the PowerCD, the CD SC and the CD 150 are not multisession capable.) The most recent version of Apple CD-ROM Software available for individual download is 5.3.2 (as of this writing, a newer version, 5.3.3, is available only as part of the System 7.6.1 update). These updates fix several bugs and include "improved support for CD Extra discs" (for more details on this and other fixes read Apple's description). The CD-ROM software is free and is available from any of the many the Apple Software Update archives:

or ask your local Apple Dealer or Users Group or contact Apple.

The software comes as a disk image. You will need to mount the disk image with Shrinkwrap or a similar utility. This creates a virtual floppy disk on which you'll find an installer. Shrinkwrap is a fine product which is still freeware for non-commercial use.

The Apple CD-ROM software is also available on some online services:

On Compuserve:

The file is on the Apple Support Forum, Library 7 in the BROWSE LIBRARIES section. [GO APLSUP] is the command to get to the forum.

On America Online:

Go to [keyword: applecomputer] and look in the Macintosh Display & Peripheral sub-folder of the Apple SW Updates folder.

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B. Macs with non-Apple CD-ROM Drives &/or non-Apple CD-ROM Software

If you are using a third party (non-Apple) CD-ROM drive with your Mac (or using non-Apple CD-ROM software with your Apple CD-ROM drive) the above instructions do not apply. Recent versions of Apple's CD-ROM software do provide some support for some non-Apple brand drives, but may not support See Dee Plus on these drives. You will need to contact your drive's manufacturer and/or the publisher of whatever CD-ROM driver software you're using to find out if they are compatible with See Dee Plus and how to obtain updated driver software (if necessary).

FWB, makers of the popular CD-ROM Toolkit software, have a collection of Software And Support Resources which includes a list showing which of the many drive models CDT suppports are capable of playing Enhanced CDs (and also has a lot of other potentially useful technical information about the quirks and capabilities of many drives).

Sony Online's CD Extra pages provide a helpful list of multisession compatible drives as well as a list of technical support contacts for ROM drive manufacturers.

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C. Mac-Specific Notes

  1. Older Apple CD-ROM Drives

    The above information applies to all recent Apple brand CD-ROM drives. It does not apply to older Apple drives such as the PowerCD, the CD SC and the CD 150, which, sadly, are not multi-session capable.

    Problems that users of the Apple DOS Compatability Card are having with mounting CDs on the DOS "side" of their Power Mac 6100 DOS Compatable computers are fixed in versions of Apple's CD-ROM Software higher than version 5.1.7. See above for info on obtaining updates.

  2. FWB CD-ROM Toolkit

    If you are running FWB's CD-ROM Toolkit you will need version 1.5.6 or better to play See Dee + disks. A recent report noted that v2.0.3 needed updating to 2.0.5 to satisfy an 8500. If you need to update your copy of CD-ROM Toolkit check out the the CDT updaters and release notes page at the FWB Web site or send email to

    Multisession: Open the CDT control panel, click on options and then make sure that you enable the feature called "Upon CD inserts check every track for possible data to mount."
    Active Audio: Open the CDT control panel, click on options and then make sure that you disable the feature called "Upon CD inserts check every track for possible data to mount." Otherwise the disk will mount as a plain audio CD.
  3. Apple Quad Speed CD-ROM Drives

    There is a known problem with playing See Dee Plus disks on early versions of the AppleCD 600 quad-speed drive manufactured by Matshushita (you can use a utility such as Robert Polic's freeware SCSI Probe or FWB's HDT Prober to determine the manufacturer of your AppleCD 600). Some of these drives had the wrong ROM installed when they were manufactured. This ROM did not allow the drive to read multi-session data CD-ROM disks. If you are having problems reading multi-session CD-ROM disks, an authorized Apple service provider can replace the drive. AppleCD 600 quad-speed drives maufactured by Sony always worked properly with multi-session CD-ROM disks.

  4. Corel Drivers and CD-ROM Setup

    The "Corel Drivers for Enhanced CD" that come with the Bob Dylan's Greatest Hits Volume 3 and some other Sony CD Extra products are intended for non-Apple CD-ROM drives. The Corel CD contains a multimedia update, which is the Apple Multimedia Tuner which was used to fix some problems in QuickTime prior to version 2.1, and is unrelated to See Dee Plus disks. The multimedia update should not be installed (if you're using a version of Quicktime older than 2.1 you should upgrade- see the Quicktime Software section for more info). The Corel CD also contains Apple's CD-ROM Setup 5.1.1. This driver should also not be installed, and instead you should get the latest Apple CD-ROM Software (see above).

    The information in notes 3 and 4 is from volume 2, issue 18 of the Apple Information Alley Newsletter, which is an excellent source for all sorts of obscure but useful technical information about Apple products.

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VI. Windows Info

1. Multisession disks may take somewhat longer to mount than regular CD-ROMs. If you put a See Dee Plus disk in your drive and nothing happens right away, don't panic. Wait times of up to 40 seconds have been reported though this seems excessive and may be indicative of a system that needs tweaking.

2. Data bottlenecks can occur where the sound card also serves as the CD-ROM interface, particularly when dealing with 16-bit sound. Consider a scsi interface.

3. Built-in CD-ROM drives in new pcs that come with Windows 95 preloaded SHOULD play multisession right out of the box. Microsoft's Win 95 See Dee Plus Info Site has info about hardware and software compatibility. I suggest bothering them. See our Quicktime Software section for info on Quicktime for Windows and our CD-ROM Drives section for more info on hardware compatability.

4. Sometimes confused Wintel users overwrite Win95 drivers with Windows 3 drivers. We're not saying you're one of these people. Just stating a fact. If Win95 won't run see dee + then bother Microsoft. It's supposed to and they should help you make it work.

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VII. Feedback Forms

A. See Dee + Tech Problems

If you are having problems with or have questions about the See Dee +, email us at <> or use this form:

Email Address:
What seems to be the problem?:

B. See Dee + Tech Solutions

If you had problems getting your machine to read the See Dee + and then solved the problem yourself please email us or use this form to let us have the details so we can add to the tech support page and help others (include all relevant information about your hardware and software and what you did to make it work):

Email Address:
What was the problem and how did you solve it?:

Note- These forms are only for communications regarding Pere Ubu's Folly of Youth and Beeboys See Dees +. If you have general questions or comments for Pere Ubu or Ubu Web please use one of the forms on the Contacts & Feedback page.

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VIII. Folly of Youth Notes

  1. The soundtrack to the Fish Shack qt is digitially cruddy. This doesn't show when played thru the computer's speaker (which is why I never caught it) but if you listen on headphones, uh... There may be other such problems involving sound but I'm too distressed to look. You didn't want hi fi from a computer anyway, did you? (Silly boy).

  2. Please note the following:

    • The thing works.
    • It's a new format, you need current drivers or extensions.
    • Please do read the READ ME files.
    • If you run a computer you need to figure stuff out.
    • Many files included are DATA files. They don't DO anything.

  3. On the Mac three icons will appear on your desktop (all of which need to be trashed to eject the disk). They are called "Audio CD," "FOY" and "FOY_PC." "Audio CD" contains the 4 audio tracks. You can manipulate these with Quicktime. "FOY" will open a window. This is the Mac side. "FOY_PC" is the Windows side. There are some different data files spread around the pc side you might want to access so I made it available to the Mac side.

  4. On the PC you can only access "FOY_PC."

  5. Make sure you remove old versions of updated software. For example, the Apple Installer puts the new Apple CD Audio Player in the Apple Menu Items folder, if you don't keep the old one there you'll need to search & delete.

  6. WINDOWS ONLY: Clicking the Tour icon (blue car) on the Story of My Life page of the discography takes you to the Imago promo cds screen and there's no way out except using the scape key or CONTROL-Q to quit.

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VIII. Beeboys Notes

A. Windows Issues

  1. I failed to convert the QTWDOC.TXT correctly when I transferred from the Mac. My abject apologies. It's a useful document. A more readable copy is available here on the web site (see the Quicktime Software section) or it can be downloaded from GO MACMEDIA on Compuserve.

  2. Some button & sounds may not run properly or may cause havoc while Quicktimes are running because of the limitations of the Windows sound drivers. Didn't see this in the testing and there are no reports but be aware.

  3. The new version of Quicktime for Windows (2.1.2 ) is available at the usual download sites and you should definitely switch to it (the version included on the Beeboys disc is 2.0.3).

B. Macintosh Issues

None, of course. (So far)

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The Ubu Web See Dee + Tech Support Page was last updated on 4/12/97.

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