Understanding Types of CDs

by Barry Dysert
(last updated March 10, 2014)

CDs, or "Compact Discs," are used for audio and data storage. When formatted for audio, a CD will hold about 80 minutes worth of audio. For data storage, a CD's capacity is roughly 700 MB. While they used to be a mainstay for data storage, their relatively small capacity (compared with today's hard disks and flash drives) have seen CDs fall out of favor somewhat. Since they are still used, though, for data storage and software distribution, it's good to know what types of CDs are available.

The compact disc used for audio was originally typed as CD-DA (Compact Disc, Digital Audio), but it soon gave way to the more versatile CD-ROM (Compact Disk, Read-Only Memory). Neither of these types of discs can be written to, so other types of CDs soon found their way to market. Among these is the CD-R, which is a "write-once/read many" type of CD. These have typically been used for data archival or to "burn" an audio CD. The evolution of CDs continued to the point where we now have discs that can be rewritten many times (CD-RW).

 This tip (13001) applies to Windows 7 and 8.

Author Bio

Barry Dysert

Barry has been a computer professional for over 30 years, working in different positions such as technical team leader, project manager, and software developer.  He is currently a senior software engineer with an emphasis on developing custom applications under Microsoft Windows. ...

MORE FROM BARRY

Running Older Programs in Windows

You may still need to use programs that worked under older versions of Windows that don't work so well under Windows 7 or ...

Discover More

Transferring Pictures from a Camera

Transferring pictures from a camera to your computer may be simpler than you think. This tip describes the process.

Discover More

Copying Data with XCopy

XCopy is a file and directory copy utility built into Windows. If you have a lot of file management to do that can't easily ...

Discover More
MORE WINDOWSTIPS

Understanding Types of DVDs

There are several types of DVDs on the market. This tip explains the various types and how you might use them.

Discover More

Playing DVDs On Your System

Playing DVDs on your system could be as simple as merely inserting the disc into the drive. But at worst, it's only one click ...

Discover More

Scanning Pictures with a Scanner

If all you have is a hardcopy picture, you can still digitize it by using a scanner. This tip gives a high-level description ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WindowsTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments for this tip:

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)

Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WindowsTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.

Links and Sharing
Share