I can't remember the last time I burned a CD or DVD

I needed to copy big fileset the other day and all my thumbdrives were MIA. I was about to swipe my camera’s SD photo card for this when I remembered I have a CD-DVD burner. I started looking for a blank DVD then I remembered how slow doing that was compared to a thumbdrive copy. It then occurred to me I haven’t burned a CD or DVD in 2-3 years. When gig+ sized thumbdrives became throwaway cheap I left it all behind. Burning a DVD feels like using a floppy drive these days.

I decided to wait until I could find a thumbdrive.

Sometimes the way things become utterly obsolete sneaks up on you.

I just did a few days ago, an ebook for my mom to listen to in the car. I still make music CDs for myself to listen to in the car too. I’m not into stereo equipment so a basic CD player is fine with me.

I got started burning CDs quite a while back. I see an old backup nearby dated 1997 and that was far from the first thing I ever burned. 2x speed and the burner was the size of a desktop box! Bought CDs in ten-pack boxes in jewel cases. No spindles then.

I used to burn something at least weekly. Bought a stack of CD-Rs/DVD-Rs several times a year. Always looking for a sale. Haven’t bought a new stack in years and still have quite a few on hand.

Now I burn a few mp3 CDs once in a great while for the car whose stereo doesn’t have a USB port. Never burn a standard music CD at all anymore.

Haven’t burned a DVD movie in a long time. Do data backups to a disk on my server.

I went thru and burned some Linux distro discs a couple months ago to install a fresh Linux on a test box. Faster and easier than doing a bootable USB stick in this case. But that was a pretty uncommon thing. (It was pretty much a nightmare doing this. The state of Linux install and setup is unbelievably horrid. And I have a PhD in CS and was installing Linux when it was pronounced right. Disgraceful.)

I burned one the other day, but that’s the first time in at least six months.

There are uses for DVDs and CDs that thumbdrives don’t fill as well.

Example: I make a DVD of every video show I create as a backup. 30 cents for a DVD that cannot be erased accidentally is a good price compared to a thumbdrive that can be. DVDs fit in a file cabinet better and can be written on or mailed. I can give a standard DVD to someone to play on their TV system, where they haven’t the slightest idea how to play a thumbdrive, or even if it works in their TV.

It’s the state of the (consumer) art ca. 2014. Next decade, I’m sure things will be different.

Our car’s head unit lacks an aux input and is absurdly shaped so replacing it with a modern unit is absurdly expensive. so if we want music in that car, the only way to do it is by burning CDs.

Other than that, the blanks collect dust.


I’m in the same boat, really. 99% of the uses of the burner in the last 3 years was to burn bootable install CDs or live CDs for stuff like OSs or bootable diagnostics. The majority of the machines in the house are too old to boot off of USB, and if I install a Linux distro, I like to keep the installation DVDs handy in case I need to do it again. I don’t really feel like devoting whole thumb drives to that.

The other use is to make up custom audio CD mixes as gifts. You can’t plug a thumb drive into most of the audio devices in our house or cars, and you can’t make up a nice custom cover and CD label for a thumb drive either.

Huh. I bought this laptop a year ago, and only now noticed that it actually has a CD drive. I hadn’t bothered to check for one until now.

I just replaced my burner a week or so ago. Got 3 of 'em for $12 on ebay! Been burning music to play in the garage.

The failure rate is pretty high. I get a dud about 30% of the time.

just yesterday i burned a live CD for booting Ubuntu.