How to turn a CD-R into CD-RW (with no erasures)

A photograph of a freshly burned DVD-R that cl...

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Who said that a CD-R (compact disc – recordable) which has burned data already in it cannot be recorded again?

Actually, you can burn data (the process of writing data into a disk) on a CD-R including DVD-R (digital versatile disc – recordable) as many times as you want as long as it has not yet reached its full capacity. You can rewrite data again and again on a recordable disk in a sense that you cannot take or change anything from it.

Why waste your money and effort in buying a new disk to burn some data on another disc if you can burn all of them on a single disk at different times?

Honestly, you can use a CD-R like a flash drive if you want except that you cannot remove or change anything from it like what their RW (rewritable) siblings do. So, you can add data on it today, another data tonight, some data tomorrow, another next week, and some next month or next year without deleting or modifying any of its existing contents.

How is that possible?

Most CD/DVD recorders can track in which part of the CD has the recording session ended. It’s like finding a page where you have last ended so you can resume reading. Once the recorded has kept track of the last burning session, it can set a new data burning session for it can start recording a new set of data. After the new set of data is recorded, the recorder will close the session so that other CD/DVD can read where the current recorder has stopped recording. Most CD or DVD drives and players don’t read or play a CD or DVD that is not properly closed.

Do all recorders resume recording a CD/DVD where what other recorders has finished recording?

It is not actually the recorder that has the problem, it is the program that you are using. For example, Nero burning tools can’t add additional data into a CD/DVD-R that has already burned data in it while Windows Data Burner and Toshiba Disk Creator can.

How can I determine whether I can still record additional data into a CD-R that is already recorded?

It’s simple. Just put the disk into the drive and Windows will start reading it. I’m not sure about Macs. Open the Computer icon on your desktop or start menu and you can see the available space to be written just like your hard disks. If you are using Windows XP, right-click on the disk, then select properties. Consumed and available space will be displayed there.

How will I add additional data into the CD-R or DVD-R?

If you are using Windows Explorer (My Computer), just drag the files or folders you want to burn then click the Burn button on top (toolbar). In some instances, Windows will automatically burn the files and folders as soon as you drag them into the CD or DVD icon or window. You can also send files and folders into the disk by selecting them, right clicking, pointing to Send To and selecting CD/DVD drive. You can do this as many times as you like.

Before ejecting the disk, make sure to click the Burn button on the toolbar (if it appears) and Close Disk to close the burning session so that it will be usable on another computer or player.

What if I am using different program?

Just put the disk into the drive and open the disk utility program you like. It will read the disk and displays its contents in gray shade. It indicates that these files and folders are already burned into the disk and cannot be removed or modified. If you wish to add more data into the disk and the program allows you to do sa well, just drag your files and folders into the CD or DVD window. There might be bars that will indicate how much of the disk is currently occupied, how much data is to be recorded and how much space is vacant. After you are done adding some stuff into the disk’s window, hit the burn button to start the burning process. The program will compare the data recorded as well as closing the burning session. Most drives eject the disc from its drive after the burning session is completed.

What if the disk is already full, can I still add additional data into it?

The answer is no. Because the recorder cannot find additional space that can be recorded, it will mark the disk as full and final. You cannot modify, remove, format or erase the disk because of its characteristics. Moreover, a mastered disk cannot be rewritten even if the disk has not yet consumed is full capacity because it is already marked final.


About cloudygearz

listens to music, is now on cloud computing, writes blog articles, designs something new and awesome, and dreams to have a worthwhile vacation

Posted on May 3, 2011, in Cool Stuff, Fun Facts, Tech Stuff, Tips and Tricks and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. works with old CD

  2. what the hell i still dont get it

  3. i did what you said, and when i draged someting, it said please enter a writable disk into so on so on. -_-

  4. My apologies, the method above works only with Toshiba Disc Creator, perhaps some other third party disc burning application.

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