I"m in the market for a new laptop and my preliminary searches seem to reveal that DVD-R drives are going the way of the Washington Redskins.
I really only need the drive to install some Microsoft Office discs that I am fond of; mostly fond of them because I already own them.
Should I keep up the hunt for a machine that includes the drive, or buy and use an external DVD drive to install my Office? Are the external drives no-brainers to operate?
Probably external. Apple I know has switched to solid sate drives now. Not sure about the other manufacturers.
Since you only need it to install a couple things, I’d just go external.
Or, heck, if you have another computer, copy the disks as ISOs and put those on your flash drive. Then mount the ISOs (by double clicking on them) to install the software.
The only computer of mine that has a DVD drive in it is my old laptop whose screen doesn’t work. They really aren’t all that useful when software is mostly downloaded and installed from online.
External all the way. Consider how rarely you’ll be using it after you’re moved in to the new computer. Those laptops that have optical dribes are usually the largest, heaviest ones.
B & H Photo sells one that plugs in using a USB Jack. Works great. It’s how I play DVD movies and run older programs.
Buy the new computer you need- and for $ 29.95 you get an external DVD play se r.
Everyone (Amazon, Best Buy, etc) sells USB-connectable external DVD/CD drives
My latest, a Dell all in one desktop, does not have a DVD drive. I ordered one with the computer but have yet to use it , even for test purposes.
Just to add, it’s not just laptops, either – many new desktops have no optical drives. My son just built his second gaming computer, and put a lot of money into making it as state-of-the-art as possible. He never even thought about an optical drive (and I’m not 100% sure if the case even has a bay for one).
Being a homebuilt, he had to install Windows on his own. I happened to have a few extra unused keys, so I downloaded the latest bootable flash-drive version of Windows 10 from Microsoft, and in a few minutes the install was done. The target Windows drive on the new computer being one of those wafer-type SSDs that attaches directly to the motherboard, and the source Windows installation medium being a USB 3 attached flash drive, it was the fastest Windows install I’ve ever seen! No Windows installation DVD grinding away for what seems like forever!
So yes, either get an external DVD drive, or if it’s just the Office install you’re worried about, either create an ISO image on a flash drive or just copy all the install files directly to a flash drive. Just be aware that in cases where the USB stick has to be bootable, you can’t just copy a bootable CD to it – special steps are necessary to create a bootable flash drive. For operating systems or standalone recovery USB sticks like backup/restore programs, this is usually done for you automatically.
Go external and get a USB Blu-Ray.
If you have another computer with a DVD drive, you can also set up the machines on a network, set the DVD drive as shared, and simply use the drive on that machine to install the program on the new laptop.
First they got rid of punched card and paper tape readers and now there’s no more DVD? What is happening to this world?
It’s a legitimate issue if you are forced to deal with ancient backups — last time I checked I still had some backups on DVD as well as punched cards, 8" floppies, and various formats of magnetic tape, and the one time I needed to read one of those it wasn’t cheap.
But obviously you wouldn’t touch any of that to install a version of Microsoft Office, just use a handy and cheap flash drive like people are saying, and it doesn’t matter if it’s not compatible with next century’s holographic crystal memory.
Another option; at this site you can download installers for Microsoft Office 2013, 2016 or 2019. Once you have it downloaded, keep the file on your computer in case you need to reinstall it.
I am an outlier. I still buy music CDs as I have no interest in streaming services. I rip my CDs lossless so I can play them in my car via USB thumb drive since CD players are no longer being installed in Mazdas. I got a nice i7 HP laptop with SSD and an onboard DVD drive, freeing up a USB slot that an external drive would have gobbled up.
I got annoyed when it first became difficult to find a laptop with a DVD drive, because I liked watching movies on airplanes and there just isn’t room to set up an external drive on a tray table. But now that Netflix and other streaming services allow you to download content to watch when you’re without an internet connection, I’m OK with it. I have an external CD/DVD drive mostly for work; we still get a lot of medical records on discs. It’s no trouble to plug it in on those occasions, and it’s nice not to have the extra bulk and weight all the time.
I bought an HP laptop last month and it had an internal DVD so they are still available. I already have an external USB drive so it was not a selling point but I didn’t customize it out.