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Gigantic Purple Slug

How To Make A Dvd

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Right.

So I have this DVD. It has some difficult to find software on it (its an installation disk) that I don't want to lose, so being proactive I copied the data onto a hard drive. But I would really like to clone it to make a replacement and test the ability to reinstall.

However when I check out said DVD, it has a weird property. The used space is 5.90 GB and there is no free space. This is weird for a couple of reasons. First most DVD's have 4.7GB of space, so the original DVD files will not fit on a new DVD. Second, all the space on the DVD is used up, which seems a bit strange.

So does anyone know what's going on here ? And before anyone asks, yes I do have the licence to run the software and it cost a lot.

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Could be some sort of copy protection scheme as they tend to mess about with the DVD structure. Assuming the stuff looks OK when copied to your HDD then just burn it back to another DVD using something like CDBurnerXP.

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Most proper stamped DVDs are dual layer so are around 9GB capacity.

They will always show no free space if the disc / session has been closed fully (which will always be the case for a stamped DVD I suppose, maybe a bit different for a re-writable or multi-session disc (I think you can write to DVD multi-session).

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Yes, get a double layer DVD. They hold about 8.5 GB! You can't get these in Tesco, but a computer shop will have them! When "finished" they report no unused space, no matter how little you put on them! :huh:

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As others have said, it's a dual-layer disc, so you will need a dual-layer blank to copy it on to. They're a bit more expensive than normal DVDs, generally a 10 pack of generic discs will be 5-6 quid or there are a few places that will do you a 25 pack for a tenner. But if you have no general need for a load of them, you could just snag a few from ebay, a quick dearch found this chap:

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/300757368647?lpid=54&device=c&adtype=pla&crdt=0&ff3=1&ff11=ICEP3.0.0&ff12=67&ff13=80&ff14=54&ff19=0

...and I daresay there are plenty of others. I would buy more than one as dual-layer burns are, in my admittedly limited experience, not nearly as foolproof as single layer burns.

Then to actually clone the disc, I'd try ImgBurn as a starting point, it's a great little program:

http://www.imgburn.com/

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Agreed with Rave.

You can get DL blanks at some more geeky high street places (e.g. Maplins), but the price will be stratospheric - up to £5 a disc. Ebay is the way to go.

The other gotcha is that some DVD drives on older computers are not able to burn DL DVDs - they can read them, but not write them. ImgBurn will tell you what media types your drive can burn, though.

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Thanks to all. it must be a DL disk. I will acquire one to try.

The ISO image is a good idea as well - thanks.

You probably get them in spindles of about 25 for not very much, from a computer shop! Try Scan, or Dabs! :blink:

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ISOs are the way to go I'd suggest. DVD media simply ain't as good as it used to be.

¬ This.

Hard drive space is cheap enough these days for you to have a couple of backups of your important data.

For extra security back your most important stuff (files, irreplaceable family pics etc) to cloud storage so it is off site.

You can never have enough backups!!

DVD's were promised to be able to store data for decades, often they degrade and the data is unrecoverable in a few short years.

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DVD's were promised to be able to store data for decades, often they degrade and the data is unrecoverable in a few short years.

A lot depends on the quality of the disc. I've just tested an 18 year old CD-R I have on my shelf, and it works perfectly. However, it was good quality media. A lot of cheap CD-Rs that I used to use lasted only a couple of weeks for car audio use before delaminating. Of course, a car is exposed to extremes of heat and humidity, not like a shelf in a house.

Supposedly, the laser-sensitive dyes used in CD-R and DVD-R discs can degrade, but I've never come across this in a practical setting as long as good-quality branded media was used.

Interestingly, blu-ray recordable discs have moved away from organic dyes to an inorganic phase-change material. This inorganic phase change material is said to be much more stable, allegedly lasting for the equivalent of 1000 years in accelerated testing. There are proprietary DVD-Rs using the same phase-change technology (e.g. Milleniata M-disc) but they need proprietary recorders.

As a final warning, the high cost of inorganic phase change recording layers has meant extreme pressure on blu-ray disc producers. There are now organic blu-ray recordable discs available at a significantly lower cost, however, they are not compatible with conventional blu-ray READERS or writers (although firmware updates for both readers and writers might be available).

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I too have working CD-Rs from the early 90s - but back then the discs cost around a fiver each, and the recorders about £2K.

Fast forward to the mid 2000s, DVD media is under a quid - and it's quite common to get read errors a couple of years down the line. Further the deterioration can be rapid and without warning - it might be fine one day, then six months later read errors appear. It even happened with a few glass mastered DVDs I owned due to corrosive printing inks being used.

Each to their own, but I wouldn't trust DVD media for archival stuff nowadays. The inorganic material sounds interesting though.

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