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CD-R/RW gone bad


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#1 mla34

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 08:00 PM

Hi. My Samsung CD-R/RW is not working(does not open most of the time) and after doing some investigating with the help of one of your tutorials and Samsung's website it is apparent that it needs to be replaced. I am not looking for high-end but want something that will handle burning/backing up lots of music from iTunes files on the computer. Since I am not very saavy with computer hardware, any suggestions on how to sift through all the product info and make an informed decision would be much appreciated!

I have worked with the Safer-Networking Forum on malware removal (they were great!) and it was suggested that I post here with my questions. After having malware issues I am anxious to back up data, pictures, and music before there is another issue.

Thanks so much!

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#2 hamluis

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 10:00 PM

I don't know about anyone else...but I've never bothered with "brand-name" decisions on optical drives.

Honestly...they are all made by just a few corporations (simolar to the manner in which VCRs were all made and sold under a zillion names) so I disregard that and just get a DVD-burner that's low in price ($20-25) these days.

I don't need many of the features that some think are "wow!" and I find that any will fit my needs/wants.

As for places to buy...www.newegg.com and www.tigerdirect.com would be my two suggestions.

Louis

#3 mla34

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 10:11 PM

Thank you for your response, Louis. Are there features to look for as far as backing up music? Are there burners that work better/faster than others that I might look into or ones that hold more than others? My husband has about 4000 songs on iTunes and backing them up is going to be quite a task. I know you can send them to a networked computer but since we have had malware issues I don't want to take a chance on hooking our two computers together and sharing any infections.

Thank you for your input!

#4 MrBruce1959

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 11:04 PM

CD-RW's are on their way out.
For the price, get an DVD-RW.
They do everything a CD-RW could do plus burn/play DVD's
Also its not the device, but the burning software you use that has its plus and minuses as far as what it can or can't do.

Edited by MrBruce1959, 10 February 2010 - 02:17 PM.

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#5 hamluis

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 01:43 PM

Agree totally with MrBruce...the real variability comes with software and how each program works.

<<Are there burners that work better/faster than others that I might look into or ones that hold more than others?>>

Burn speeds have always varied, since CD-burners were introduced. The key is to make sure that you buy media which is supported by your burner.

<<My husband has about 4000 songs on iTunes and backing them up is going to be quite a task.>>

Maybe, maybe not...depends on what format the songs are in and the file sizes. All my music is in .mp3 format and I find that...depending on the size of the file...I can record 6-10 hours of music on a CD-R. Multiply that by about 6.5 and that's how much I can put on a DVD-R.

FWIW: I don't burn music to either CD or DVD, other than for playing in my auto. It's simple enough to just keep all those files on a separate parttion on a hard drive, since I have more hard drives than I use daily.

<<...since we have had malware issues I don't want to take a chance on hooking our two computers together and sharing any infections.>>

Sounds like an external hard drive or flash drives could do the job. Music data files don't carry infections. As long as those are the only files being tranferred, I see no risk in networking well-protected systems. And...if they are not well-protected, I have to wonder "Why not?".

Louis

#6 mla34

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 07:29 PM

MrBruce and Louis...

Thank you both for all your advice. You have given me a lot to chew on...my only other concern now is, since my computer is old, does it have the resources to support a new burner? I've no idea what I need or how to figure that out. I will investigate!

I had looked into the flash drive but they ran about $80-$90. I was told I needed a "special" kind of flash drive for music. Is that not the case? Seems I bought a 2 or 3 gig flash drive for my daughter a while back for $25. That is certainly more reasonable but will it support music files and will 4000 songs fit? LOL I have no idea how much space they will take up!

Thanks again for your help!

#7 MrBruce1959

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 07:52 PM

MrBruce and Louis...

Thank you both for all your advice. You have given me a lot to chew on...my only other concern now is, since my computer is old, does it have the resources to support a new burner? I've no idea what I need or how to figure that out. I will investigate!

I had looked into the flash drive but they ran about $80-$90. I was told I needed a "special" kind of flash drive for music. Is that not the case? Seems I bought a 2 or 3 gig flash drive for my daughter a while back for $25. That is certainly more reasonable but will it support music files and will 4000 songs fit? LOL I have no idea how much space they will take up!

Thanks again for your help!

As long as your system supports USB 2.0 your good to go with the device I mentioned.
In case you are and you want to look at the drive I am talking about here's the link to it. It comes with Nero StartSmart Essentials 9.0 software. But you can also use Roxio 2010 or Nero 9.

Here is the link to the device I just bought and I am very happy with it and it got a lot of GREAT reviews!

http://www.staples.com/I-OMagic-DVD-Rewrit...C3:CG104:DP2165

Let me know what you think of it.
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#8 hamluis

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 09:48 PM

A drive...any drive...is nothing but a storage device.

Optical drives are a bit different in that they employ removeable media, rather than store on the device itself.

But flash, USB, and regular hard drives...are nothing but places to store data. There is no such thing as a "special" type of flash drive that I am aware of.

You can use Google to find out the accuracy of statements that I and anyone else might make...you don't have to believe anything just because someone said it :thumbsup:.

Louis

#9 jay_man

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 10:23 PM

DVD rewritable drives are fairly inexpensive for latest available burn speeds. All new machines ship with these...havent seen one machine in the last two years hosting a CD-RW / DVD-ROM drive.

It is very simple to install a new burner into a machine - even someone with little experience can do this. I would recommend that you remove the battery and AC adapter before performing the hardware swap.

If you are dealing with a laptop, its generally one screw on the bottom and a tug to pull the old one out and put the new one in. A matter of minutes.

For a desktop, its a little more involved but not hard.
Remove the power cord (or turn power supply off).
Open the side panel and locate the bay hosting the drive in question. You should find 2-3 cables going to it, and several screws on each side holding it in place (usually 2 per side).
One cable is the power cable coming from the power supply (series of yellow, black and red wires), one is the data cable (thin, wide, black rectangular female port at end coming from motherboard), and the final optional cable could be a very small audio cable but this is no longer required as XP and newer operating systems support the audio. Unplug the 3 cables from the drive and then unscrew any securing screws. You will have to remove both side panels to do this. Some desktops have a clip feature ... so you may need to remove the screws...simply pull the plastic retaining clip and the drive should pop forward. It depends on your desktop really. If yours fits this type - you would only need to remove one side panel.
Remove the drive in question by pulling it out of the machine (pull forwards towards the front of the machine).
Take the new drive out of packaging and make sure the jumper (plastic jumper) on the back of the drive is the same as your previous drive's setting. You have three choices: Master, Slave, Cable Select.
Put the new drive in from the front of the machine sliding towards the back and secure as the previous one was (if the previous one was the clip type - remove the old drive's screw used that the clip locks on to and screw it into the new drive in the same place).
Plug the power cable into the drive. **Rule of thumb - red wire on the power cable always can be seen sitting right next to the data cable...**
Plug the data cable into the drive and make sure its firmly inserted...there is usually an etch on one side of the data cable so you know how to insert it into the drive
No need to plug the audio support cable into the new drive unless you are running anything older than XP
Put panel(s) back on, plug machine back in and turn the beast back on. Everything should be good to go. You may need to reset the boot priority in the machine's BIOS if you have it set a certain way, but it should remember the boot priority category list even with a drive swap.

Good luck and hope this helps!

#10 mla34

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 12:04 PM

ok guys...lots of info here...lol...thank you!!

MrBruce...I did check out the link you put up and actually saw the drive at a staples today. Pardon my simplistic question but - besides the obvious, what is the difference between an external and internal burner? I am looking to replace the internal one I have and wouldn't I replace it with something like it? How do I know it will fit? Are they all basically the same dimension? Can you hook up an external one as an internal one? I am confused. :thumbsup:

jay_man - thank you for your detailed instructions... I will have to print them out and use as a guide when I swap out the drives. I am fairly confident that I will be able to do this, especially with all the help I am getting here! Thank you again!

#11 MrBruce1959

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 08:24 PM

MrBruce...I did check out the link you put up and actually saw the drive at a staples today. Pardon my simplistic question but - besides the obvious, what is the difference between an external and internal burner? I am looking to replace the internal one I have and wouldn't I replace it with something like it? How do I know it will fit? Are they all basically the same dimension? Can you hook up an external one as an internal one? I am confused. :thumbsup:


An internal drive is permanently installed into your systems tower.

An external drive is hooked up and powered through the USB port and can be switched to and used on another computer at any time even without shutting the computer off because USB devices are hot swapable.

This device can also be hooked up to a laptop, through the USB port.

Most newer DVD burners today are SATA. E-IDE drives are going by way of the Edsel and Model "T" automobile. If your system does not have SATA, I'd suggest the USB device. It was not made to be installed into the tower. That is why its called a portable, however as portable that does not mean it runs off its own power source, it is powered by your computers USB port. No adaptor required!

Mine sits ontop of my tower which sits on my floor, but it can be put anywhere on your computer desk as well.

It reads and writes to all disk formats except Blue-Ray.

If you have SATA there are a lot of great drives out there.

Edited by MrBruce1959, 12 February 2010 - 08:33 PM.

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