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Thread: Thoughts on CD/DVD drives

  1. #1
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    Thoughts on CD/DVD drives

    So while waiting for my current computer to die (so I can get a Pangolin ) the first thing that seems to be dieing is my CD/DVD drive. Which has made me think about the blasted things, and I've come to a conclusion: USB is so much better that there's really no point in still having built in CD/DVD drives.

    CD/DVD drives are bulky, which is probably why netbooks and many other lightweight or thin computers don't have them. Without a CD/DVD drive the computer can be smaller or it can have more in it (a second hard drive, gpu, a second cpu, or even all of the above in larger laptops.)

    USB is faster than CDs/DVDs. And with an external drive can hold significantly more data than Blu-Ray. Even if you wanted read only, you can mount the filesystem read only.

    As linux users we don't tend to install a whole lot of software from CD/DVD, we get it from the repository. The only case that you'd really need a CD/DVD is if you have music CDs or movies on DVD/Blu-ray in which case an external drive (which are fairly cheap these days) would work just fine and you could even rip the material from the disk and not have to worry about the disk again (certainly that's what I do with my music, I buy a cd, rip it, and forget about the disk; the only reason I don't download is because I like flac, and the ownership that comes with a disk.) Even suppose you play games on Windows that require the disk, an external drive will probably still meet your needs (especially if you're not opposed to cracks.)

    To sum up, optical media is old tech. and should be abandoned in favor of less moving parts, more speed, and more capacity provided by USB. Any other thoughts on the matter?
    Last edited by satsujinka; March 24th, 2010 at 04:47 AM.

  2. #2
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    Re: Thoughts on CD/DVD drives

    Agreed.

    I think DVD drives will eventually go the way of the floppy disk in favor of online media.

    As for storage, CDs and DVDs really aren't a great option these days.
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  3. #3
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    Re: Thoughts on CD/DVD drives

    One day the cloud will probably host most of the world's storage needs. But until we get 5+GB/s Internet connections, the Internet isn't going to be viable for large storage. So local storage and backups are the way to go for now. My chosen solution is to use an external hard drive for such tasks. Even when the cloud becomes viable I will continue to use local storage, due simply to privacy and security concerns. But I am a minority, most people won't care where their data is, so long as the experience is seamless.

    On a more system76 related note (considering what part of the forums this is,) I wonder how much thinner/lighter/cheaper a computer with Pangolin like specs would be if it lacked a CD/DVD drive.
    Last edited by satsujinka; March 22nd, 2010 at 11:23 PM.

  4. #4
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    Re: Thoughts on CD/DVD drives

    I still use floppies. Options are always nice.
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  5. #5
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    Re: Thoughts on CD/DVD drives

    Of course, options are good. But is your floppy drive inside your laptop? I mean, I'm not saying that you shouldn't use CDs/DVDs, I'm only saying that on a laptop a CD/DVD drive creates unnecessary bulk. While I can only speak from personal experience, I would think that many people only occasionally use their CD/DVD drive and that those uses are typically done around a desk, on which an external drive can sit.

  6. #6
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    Re: Thoughts on CD/DVD drives

    As someone with a new Starling and new to Ubuntu, are there any compatibility concerns regarding choice of an external CD/DVD ?

    I have no regrets about getting a computer without a CD/DVD drive, but would consider getting a drive if the price was right. (I am also quite happy with my Starling after about two months.)

  7. #7
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    Re: Thoughts on CD/DVD drives

    I should think you wouldn't have any problems. But a little research wouldn't hurt either. That and you can always return it if it doesn't work.

  8. #8
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    Re: Thoughts on CD/DVD drives

    For starters i hate optical drives

    but, in my experience usb installs have some how managed to be both less reliable and/or less convenient optical based installs.

    I think mainly this is because usb was designed for other things. Its almost like some standardization is missing or something. Too bad really, because all the potential is there.

    Something to really think about that would kick the optical drive would be a seemless VM that would act as the main os. you would be able to install the latest version of whatever you like all whilst staying in the same session. Switching os could be as simple as pressing a button.

    When i was a windows user, cds where hardly useful either. So im going to say that they're quite a few years out of date

    if you in the market for something new you in the market for something new. I wish i had grabbed a new computer sooner instead of putting up with my old p4 box. would have saved me a lot of time. yeh the specs will keep changing the longer you wait but whatever you have now will stay the same.
    Last edited by miniyak; March 23rd, 2010 at 02:57 AM. Reason: one more note
    Laptops: S76 Panp5, HP tc4400
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  9. #9
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    Re: Thoughts on CD/DVD drives

    Quote Originally Posted by satsujinka View Post
    One day the cloud will probably host most of the world's storage needs. But until we get 5+GB/s Internet connections, the Internet isn't going to be viable for large storage. So local storage and backups are the way to go for now. My chosen solution is to use an external hard drive for such tasks. Even when the cloud becomes viable I will continue to use local storage, due simply to privacy and security concerns. But I am a minority, most people won't care where their data is, so long as the experience is seamless.

    On a more system76 related note (considering what part of the forums this is,) I wonder how much thinner/lighter/cheaper a computer with Pangolin like specs would be if it lacked a CD/DVD drive.
    This may just be your perfect laptop. I would call it the PC equivalent to the MacBook Air. Only this is better.
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  10. #10
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    Re: Thoughts on CD/DVD drives

    @miniyak
    Whenever I have to use Windows for something or other I always wish hypervisors were more advanced. That way I could do the task that needs to be done in Windows (such as gaming) and still have immediate access to Linux. At the moment though, 3D support in VMs is only rudimentary and unable to actually be useful for gaming. Which I suppose is where Wine comes in, but then you can get Windows malware and typically it's a less then perfect implementation still.

    @isantop
    I occasionally think about getting a Lemur, but since my University magically requires Windows (I still haven't figured out how they managed to make an mp3 require quicktime or create a java app that only runs on Windows and Mac, but they did so I have to live with it) I need hardware that's virtualization friendly. I suppose I could run Windows natively, but Windows is such a pain to administer so I prefer it virtual because then I can forget about it (no anti-virus or additional firewall, because I take a snapshot of it prior to going online and then just restart from there every time I use it.) Which is why I'm more interested in a Pangolin. It's plenty powerful enough to do virtualization and even has IO virtualization (Intel VT-d I believe it's called.)
    That and the Pangolin has enough power for gaming, which I like to do on occasion. Though I have decided that computers, as magnificent as they are at gaming, are just not cost effective enough to buy a computer specifically for gaming.

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