I built some CD Shell 2.1.03 ISOs with Nero 6, cdimage and mkisofs, and they worked fine on VMware. I burned them to a CDRW, and that also worked on VMware. But when I boot it on the real PC, I get a "Could not read from the device" error. The dir command doesn't see any files or directories, but the cd command does. I tried long filenames, short filenames, Joliet, track-at-one, disc-at-once, and nothing works. I've seen several people have the same issue, and some reported that using a different recorder solved the problem. I'm downloading CD Shell 2.0.11 from eMule (only 2 or 3 available sources, that can take some time), when I check that version I'll post again.
Windows XP Pro SP2
VMware Workstation 184.108.40.20668
Samsung 52x24x52 CD recorder
Epox 8KHA+ motherboard (Award BIOS)