How to burn files onto CD-R disks

I got a new computer and want to transfer massive amounts of files from the old one to the new one. Problem: When I put a blank CD-R into the CD drive to copy files onto it, the computer doesn’t “see” the disk. It tells me there is no disk in the drive. I have Memorex CD-R 700MB 24X “recordable compact disks for computer CD writers.” My two CD drives are LG CD-RW CED-8042B assigned to my D: drive, and BTC BCE 1610IM assigned to my E: drive. Neither one “sees” the Memorex blanks. How do I troubleshoot?

You need special packet-writing software installed if you want to drag-and-drop files to the CD-R in Windows Explorer. The drive should have come with a utility for this purpose. The two most common ones are Roxio DirectCD and Nero In-CD.

It’s a new computer, Number. It should, therefore, have XP installed (unless it’s a Mac). XP should be able to do drag-and-drop all on it’s own. So, I’m not sure what the problem might be, especially as both drives won’t do it. I’ll get back to you on this.

I’m talking about my old computer, of course. I need to insert blank CDs into the OLD computer (Win98) so that I can copy files to move them to my new computer (XP). The OLD computer does not even see the blank CDs in the drives and tells me there’s no disk there; these drives have no problem reading pre-recorded CDs.

I think you have to format the CD first so that it can be read. At least that’s what I have to do. If your Win98 machine doesn’t have Roxio or something similar, I think you can format them on the new computer and then just put it in the Win98 drive and the drive will see it.

Ack! :smack:

What Number said, then.

Jomo Mojo blank CDs are not recognised by your drives.Unless you are running Win XP there is no way that a blank CD will be read by your drive.It works the same way like floppy disks did.You need to format the disc before it can be recognized. I would suggest you try Ahead Nero or Roxio CD writing software.Once you use these softwares to write the disc it will be recognised by the drives because they would already have been formatted. Check out the installation disc you would have got with the CD writer because it is most likely to provide you with a software for burning cds.I have a ASUS writer and Nero came free with it. Of course YMMV.

Windows 98 doesn’t have built-in software to write on CD-R. You need to install a software package to burn CDs. In my experience Nero burning ROM*, the version previous to the current Nero 6 (which I haven’t bothered to upgrade to yet) worked very well. As it is more efficient to burn all of a CD-R’s files at a go you might prefer using that kind of software in the “chose selection of files then burn” mode rather than the “drag files onto media icon” mode.

  • Ouch. A pune or play on words.

The others have addressed the problem pretty well but just to be clear Mojo, in anything before Win XP without special (packet writing) software that fools the operating system into looking at the blank CD as a hard drive, the blank CD will not show up under your windows explorer or anywhere as a writable disk. To burn CD’s under Win 98 you have to install burning software and in the burning program set up a list of files you wanted buned to the CD and the burning programs (Roxio, Nero etc) will write these files to the CDR disk.

If you choose to go the packet writing software route vs simply buring them via a burning program, be aware you may need to have the packet writing software installed on both PCs for the packet written CD to be recognizable. If you burn it via the standard burning programs it will be treated and read a regular CD without any special software necessary.

As a side note if you have “a ton” of files to transfer it might make more sense to simply slave your old drive to the new PC temporarily and copy them over to a directory in the new PC. This would be much faster than creating multiple CDs in most cases.

When I got this Compaq computer with Win98 installed on it, I found some CD burning software bundled in. I never found any instructions or explanations on what this software was or how to use it. Anyway, it’s called CeQuadrant Just! Burn. Anybody know anything about this? I tried to drag files into its window, and it acted like it was doing something, but nothing at all happened that I could tell.

More questions:

What is “packet writing” software? How do I recognize it? How is it different from “standard burning programs”?

What are these “standard burning programs” of which you speak?

What does “slave your old drive to the new PC” mean? Sorry I am so ignorant of these functionalities, but I honestly have no idea what you’re talking about. Please be a little bit patient with me.

Sorry that was a misspelling above of the software’s name. It’s actually CeQuadrat Just!Burn. No n in Quadrat. (Sounds like some kind of rodent.)

Packet writing software allows Windows to treat CD-RWs as if they were large floppy disks. Basically, after a (quite lengthy) format, you can drag-n-drop files directly in Windows, and they’ll get burned to the CD.

I really only recommend packet writing for CD-RWs that you plan to use to transport data back and forth between a few computers, since every computer that you wish to read the CD on must have the packet-writing software installed to be able to read the CD.

They are programs that you use to write data to a CD without having to format it beforehand. Nero and Roxio are to examples, and are also two of the most popular burning programs.

Most PCs can use up to four IDE devices, such as hard drives and CD-ROM drives. One way to get data to a new computer is to physically remove the hard drive from the old computer and install it into the new computer.

IDE devices attached to the same cable are paired into a master and a slave. The hard drive that you boot off of is going to be the master, so when you attach another hardrive as a slave device, you are “slaving it to the new PC”.

Jomo Mojo,
I had a similar problem when I bought a stack of new Memorex CD-R discs. My CD drive (2 year old IBM PC, Win ME) was not able to write on the discs. My solution – update the driver for the CD drive. Discs worked fine after that. Something about the new discs wasn’t being recognized by my drive. My suggestion is to first install the latest drivers for all your CD drives before looking for other solutions.

In this case, I don’t think it’s necessary. For Windows to not “see” a blank CD-R is expected behavior. That’s exactly what’s supposed to happen.

You do NOT need packet writing for your application. Just burn the CDs in one go.

If it’s feasible, the fastest way to solve this one is probably to take the old HD out of the old computer, set the jumper (plastic cover over little pins on the back) to slave, and hook it up to the IDE cable with the HD of the new computer, then copy the files.

IDE’s transfer rate is much quicker than burning a CD and then copying from CD to HD, so if you’re comfortable with moving the hardware, there’s no reason not to do it that way. The old drive can always be reset as master (with the jumper) and reinstalled in the old computer if you want both to be functional.

It’s also less expensive if you don’t already have burning software, because there’s nothing necessary to buy.

What’s an IDE cable? How do you set the jumper pins to slave? I really don’t think I’m up for removing the old hard drive. I’m scared to do anything so drastic to such a vital piece of equipment. Also, I could no doubt get it out, but I would have no idea how to put it back in.

I put one of those blank Memorex CD-R disks into the drive on my new computer with Windows XP, and it saw the disk, and invited me to write files on it. I didn’t see any way to format it, though.

How do I format a new blank disk in XP?

What software do I need to format the disk so that my Windows 98 can write files to it?

Can anyone tell me if CeQuadrat Just!Burn is any good for anything? It’s old software, dating from 1997. It never accomplished anything that I can tell. I dragged some files into its window, and it claimed to be writing a CD, its graphic interface made bubbling test tube visuals as though it were functioning, but nothing happened.

You don’t. Formatting is only necessary for packet writing (treating the CD-RW as a big floppy), and WindowsXP can’t do packet writing without installing additional software.

Plus, packet writing won’t work with a CD-R, only with a CD-RW (rewritable).

Since you’re using a CD-R, this isn’t an option. Instead, you need to use normal CD-burning software, like Nero or Roxio. Note that the CD will not be recognized by Windows until after you write the files to the CD with the CD burning software.

No formatting is needed in this case. The CD burning software will create the filesystem on the CD as it burns the files.

If it’s that old, then it’s probably not very good. You can download a fully functioning trial version of Nero at I suggest that you do that and use it to burn you files onto the CD-R.