Welcome to MacTalk Australia

the largest Australian community for Apple discussions and topics

» Join the discussions, Register Now!
Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    126

    Default DVD-RW: reusable or single use?

    Hi, just bought some Imation DVD-RWs. The label says 4x2hr (video photos data). I had assumed RW meant it was rewriteable.

    So I filled one up with pics/music and then after finishing with it tried dumping all the stuff in the Trash (I wish it was Rubbish, sorry). The laptop just said 'sorry the operation could not be completed because an error occurred. disk error -61).

    Am I missing something here? Are they single use etc etc.

    (PS: it's an Intel MacBook so it's not some old PB100!)

    cheers, and TIA,
    Grahame

  2. #2
    decryption's Avatar decryption is offline Kenny Powders

    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    St. Albans, Melbourne
    Posts
    22,090

    Default

    If they say RW, then yes, you're supposed to be able to erase them.
    How? I don't remember. It's been a good 10 years since I used a RW disc.

    Check out this Apple support doc on erasing RW discs on OS X: Mac OS X: How to erase a CD-RW disc

  3. #3
    marc's Avatar marc is offline Moderator

    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    8,385

    Default

    You'll need to use Disk Utility to erase the disc.

    "Erasing a recordable disc, such as a CD-RW or DVD-RW disc, creates a blank disc with no formatting."

    (Mac OS X 10.4): Erasing a disk or volume

    Edit: decryption beat me to it. GRR!

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Perth
    Posts
    2,999

    Default

    Basically you write to it once, and then everything on the disc appears to be read-only. It's not like a USB key where you can trash/rename/resave files that are on it.

    Once you blank out the whole disc using the Disk Utility method mentioned above, then it becomes a "blank DVD" again and you can burn it another time.

  5. #5
    Brains's Avatar Brains is offline Still stuck in 1984

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Inside your head
    Posts
    6,559

    Default

    The lads are right, RW is an all-or-nothing affair -- you burn them like you would any other disc, and they'll appear to the reader as a normal burnt disc will, but to re-use them, they have to be erased completely before they can be re-used. You can't treat them like a normal hard drive or USB key.

    There's some software that used to be bundled with Windows machines called Discribe that would let you treat a recordable disc somewhat like a floppy disk (which were still around then) or hard drive, in that you could change its contents, but it did so in a sneaky manner -- any extra files were stored in a new session and an entirely new directory was added, using up 8-12 MB a shot, resulting in a full disc before you knew it. Needless to say, it wasn't popular.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    126

    Default

    As per usual, brilliantly comprehensive info'.

    Thanks guys. I'll try Disk Utility.

    Grahame

  7. #7
    tintinaujapon's Avatar tintinaujapon is offline Aut inveniam viam aut faciam.

    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Perth
    Posts
    3,105

    Default

    I wonder if there's ever been a DVD- or CD-RW in history that was ever used more than, say… twice.
    .
    Times are bad. Children no longer obey their parents, and everyone is writing a book.

    - Cicero (106BC-43BC)

  8. #8
    MrJesseRoss's Avatar MrJesseRoss is offline Bug Bard

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Sydney, NSW
    Posts
    6,461

    Default

    Years ago, I used to use a cd-rw to transfer stuff between PCs. Only one had a net connection, so the only way I had to get stuff onto the other was via CD (flash drives weren't an option and 3.5" floppies were too small).

    Unfortunately, after about ten rewrites, the disc became unreadable. I've not used them since.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Kin Kin, Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    567

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tintinaujapon View Post
    I wonder if there's ever been a DVD- or CD-RW in history that was ever used more than, say… twice.
    I was given a bunch of RW a few years ago and am still trying to figure out what the hell I would use them for.
    Regular DVD's are so cheap they defeat the RW proposition.
    If anyone can think of an useful method of utilising RW, I for one, would love to hear it.
    The Usual Suspect
    http://bachbeautyclinic.com

  10. #10
    mitty's Avatar mitty is offline Couldn't that Chrysler have hit me instead?

    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    5,952

    Default

    Isn't there something called DVD RAM that basically treats a DVD RW like HDD or USB stick? Though it's not very common.

    EDIT here you go. DVD-RAM - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

  11. #11
    arkenstone's Avatar arkenstone is offline Pinball Wizard

    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    seaford.vic.au
    Posts
    2,044

    Default

    I agree. DVD-RWs so much more expensive than -Rs that I never really bothered - just throw the disk out and start again with a fresh one.
    [B]| Flickr | blog | MacTalk Podcaster | Official PM-Bid Hater #1

  12. #12
    nibbles's Avatar nibbles is offline Holding the fort

    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Gerringong, NSW
    Posts
    4,444

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tintinaujapon View Post
    I wonder if there's ever been a DVD- or CD-RW in history that was ever used more than, say… twice.
    I used them for testing home movies and things like that before burning them to DVD, mind you this was about 4 years ago where DVD's were expensive and these were given to me. Also I used to often use them for music in my DVD player while playing ps2 before ipods existed.

  13. #13
    JimWOz's Avatar JimWOz is offline 54 no. ...and still seeing it big as a footy

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Brisbane
    Posts
    824

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mitty View Post
    Isn't there something called DVD RAM that basically treats a DVD RW like HDD or USB stick? Though it's not very common.

    EDIT here you go. DVD-RAM - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Yes, DVD-RAM is just like a big / 4.3G floppy.
    But at $11 each last time I got one, not really appealing.
    Current macs have DVD-RAM read capability in their drives, but sadly not write. So, the format is not much use for Mac users unless you get a write capable drive.

    I use some DVD-RW disks, and they suffer on two counts.
    First, supported write speed is slower than single write disks, and second, the time to fully erase for re use is annoying.
    MBP15 i7 2.2 16G/1TB/120SSD, MB C2D2.4 Black, MB2.0 Black, PBG4/15/1.5, PMG4 MDD, iMacG3/333, Epson1410, HPLJ5200DN, HP ML115 Ubuntu Server, Airport Extreme+Express N. In the closet: HP DC7600 PC, PBG4/12/867, PBG3/333, PM6200, PB5300C, SE30, SE.

  14. #14
    KlaasVisser is offline Apprentice curmudgeon

    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Ryde NSW
    Posts
    199

    Default

    I used to use DVD-RAM discs in an external LaCie drive, thinking it would be good for incremental backup (full backup on one, then a triple set to rotate through for incrementals - you can see that my early days with backup involved tape <grin>).

    However, the abysmally slow write speeds just made it a cumbersome process. Nowadays, I just do a full backup to DVD-R, incrementals to iDisk, then burn those to a DVD-R after a week, and do another full backup to DVD-R. I keep just the last eight weeks, trashing the older discs. DVD-R media is very cheap these days, it's not worth messing about with -RW stuff.

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •