How Optical Storage (CD-ROM, DVD-ROM, DVD-RAM) Drives Work
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Optical storage drives are the most economial and practical way of backing up your computer's vital data. They also remain the easiest way to install new software into a computer. This series of pages will teach you different aspects associated with how optical drives work.

Optical storage is the storage of data on an optically readable medium. Data is recorded by making marks in a pattern that can be read back with the aid of light, usually a beam of laser light precisely focused on a spinning optical disc. An older example of optical storage that does not require the use of computers, is microform. There are other means of optically storing data and new methods are in development. An optical disc drive is a device in a computer that can read CD-ROMs or other optical discs, such as DVDs and Blu-ray discs.

Optical storage differs from other data storage techniques that make use of other technologies such as magnetism, such as floppy disks and hard disks, or semiconductors, such as flash memory and RAM.

Optical storage can range from a single drive reading a single CD-ROM to multiple drives reading multiple discs such as an optical jukebox. Single CDs (compact discs) can hold around 700 MB (megabytes) and optical jukeboxes can hold much more. Single-layer DVDs can hold 4.7 GB, while dual-layered can hold 8.5 GB. This can be doubled to 9.4 GB and 17 GB by making the DVDs double sided, with readable surfaces on both sides of the disc. HD DVDs were able to store 15 GB with a single-layer and 30 GB with a dual-layer. Blu-ray discs, which won the HDTV optical format war by defeating HD DVDs, can hold 25 GB for single-layer and 50 GB for dual-layer.

 
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Title: Guide To Optical Drive Technologies
Description: These series of pages provide an overview of how optical drives work. You will gain an understanding of the primary differences between CD-ROM, CDRW, and DVD drives. You will also obtain an understanding of how optical drives connect to the computer's motherboard inside a system.
No. Of Documents: #
Last Modification: November 12, 2016
How To Install A DVD-ROM Drive
This document will outline the steps required to install a DVD-ROM drive into your computer. You'll learn the basics of how to configure the drive for proper installation.
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How To Boot Your Computer Directly From An Optical Drive
This document will outline the steps required to boot your computer directly from an optical storage drive, for the purpose of troubleshooting your computer or reinstalling an operating system.
Read Full Article
Available Articles:
Understanding CDROM and DVD Drives
About DVD Drives
Features Of Digital Versatile Discs (DVDs)
How To Install A DVD-ROM Drive
How To Configure Your Computer To Boot From An Optical Drive
Overview of CD-Based Optical Technologies
Drive Mechanical Operation
CD-R Technologies
CD-RW Technologies
Multi-Read Specifications
Overview of DVD Technologies
DVD-Ram Technologies
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Cables and Connectors Cases CD-ROM and Optical storage mediums Central Processing Units Floppy disk drives Hard disk drives Computer memory Modems and routers Computer monitors