Rewriteable CD'S on old PC

  collinsc 18:17 10 Dec 2008


My Uncle has an oldish PC, not sure what make, model - he wants to know whether he can use rewriteable CD's on this old PC.

Can anyone advise how i can identify this?
And exactly what are the best rewriteable CDs nowadays!

thanks kindly

  Stuartli 18:20 10 Dec 2008

Unless the use of CD-RWs is absoutely necessary, it's much better to use CD-Rs which are much easier for optical drives to read due to much higher reflectivity levels.

They can be used in multi-session form with Nero, for instance, until full, although it is essential to Save the folder after each multi-session; Nero asks if you wish to Save automatically.

  collinsc 18:32 10 Dec 2008

so i can save on to CD-R's today, and then tomorrow load it back in and add more files to it?
Rather than writing only once...?

  tullie 18:42 10 Dec 2008

He has got a cd writer i assume,if its very old it could be a cdrom drive?

  collinsc 18:52 10 Dec 2008

he is able to write to cd's at present...
he writes on to CDs which he can write to only once... thats about all i know at moment...

if he is able to write to a CD at the moment, does that mean he would be able to write to a rewriteable disc?

  DieSse 19:38 10 Dec 2008

"Can anyone advise how i can identify this?"

Yes - find out what model CD Writer he has fitted - then you or we can look it up.

Writing to CD RW disks is not identical to writing to a hard drive. If you want to update a file, you read it in to the system, update it - then you're best off writing it back as a renamed file. Files can't exactly be "updated" on a CD RW. This is what Stuartli is telling you above.

It may be more convenient to consider using a USB memory stick. These can be used like a hard drive - read file - update it - write back the updated file. Plus, even a 4GB USB stick now costs less than £10 - or get two 2GB ones for more flexibility.

  woodchip 19:49 10 Dec 2008

He can if he as a CDRW drive, it will not read them if not. Its far better to buy a DVDRW drive as they are now Peanuts to buy

  collinsc 19:49 10 Dec 2008

i perhaps should have put in more info.
He requires this to store photos on and he has a library he then stores the CDs away in - he isn't interested in a USB or ext HD - Even though i agree it would be simpler and cheaper...

how can i get him to identify the cd writer, is it in control panel / system properties or something?

  DieSse 19:58 10 Dec 2008

Archiving on CD RWs is not a good idea, as they are much less durable than CD rs.

Also the updating thing is much more awkward. You can't pull out a full CD-RW and update a file on it - they just don't work like that.

How many CDs does he have in his library - and how many is he likely to want eventually?

  Stuartli 20:16 10 Dec 2008

Actually you can use a CD-RW disk in similar manner to a hard drive using, for instance, InCD from Nero.

However, the basic fact remains as I mentioned earlier that CD-RW disks are not as reflective as CD-Rs and some drives have problems reading them.

Much better to keep adding the photo files to a multi-session CD-R until it's full (even better to back up to a second disk as well); Finalisation is done just before the last multi-session.

The advice to buy a DVD rewriter which, of course, will also burn to CD blank disks, is sound; they are only about £15 upwards for a top brand model these days and you can get a lot more photo files on a DVD..:-)

You can download the manuals explaining how to use multi-session and InCD at:

click here

  DieSse 21:29 10 Dec 2008

You can write to CD-rs and leave them unfinalised - then add more files later (up to the capacity of the disc) - if that's all he needs.

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