That would be the simplest way to do it - although probably not the most efficient.
system ("insert program path here");
2 & 3.) I'm just speculating here, since I have no idea how to go about it.. but for number 3, wouldn't it be similar to operating any other hardware through a program? Once you figure out how to get the system info, it should be able to tell you what their CD-ROM driver is, and you can have your program access that and force it to open the CD-ROM. I've no idea how to do it though - just speculation.