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Write protected CD-RW media?

Posted on 2006-05-25
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Two (up to date) XP computers quite separately but within the same couple of weeks are turning CD-RW into inaccessible "write protected" CDs.  One PC is a year old, the other brand new.  One has been using the CD-RW once or twice a week for a year, the other is using brand new CD-RW media.  Before we get into why...

Question:  how to I remove this "write protection" from the CD-RW?  And what is a write protected CD-RW anyway?  WHat makes a drive decide a CD-RW is write protected?
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Question by:crnz
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by:rindi
rindi earned 600 total points
ID: 16767006
any type of CD-R(W) is allways write protected once the data has been copied to it and the session closed. Before you can rewrite to a CD-RW that has previously been written to, you need to erase it. You do that by using the CD writing software, like nero etc.

A free CD burning software is this:

http://cdburnerxp.se/
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by:knoxzoo
knoxzoo earned 150 total points
ID: 16771370
Actually, it's not session closed, it's disk closed.  Make sure your software isn't set to close the disk at the conclusion of the write if you intend to write more to it later.  When you're satisfied with the content of the disk, then close the disk to protect it and make it accessible in other drives.
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by:logic0004
logic0004 earned 150 total points
ID: 16772119
whats the manufacturer of the CD-RW media ? what software are u using to burn the CD-RW and to which u can't write again ?
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by:crnz
ID: 16773059
Imation CD-RW.  Backup My PC.

As for disk closed... the interesting thing is that nothing was changed.  it worked fine for a year, and for a week or so on the new computer.  and then suddenly, they both did it.  but the application itself hasn't been updated.
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by:rindi
ID: 16773122
Check the nero backup tool. there is an option which can be set to erase a CD if necessary, maybe that option isn't set?
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by:logic0004
ID: 16777537
I think u might be missing some configuration in Backup MY PC software, because of that u r getting the problem. See if its possible to use other tools like Nero, Alcohol 120%  (http://www.alcohol-soft.com/) to earse the used CD-RW and then use them for Backup My PC software.

Its also might be possible that the Backup My PC software doesn't erase the CDs, as i dont use that software but i downloaded the trial version to test it. I didn't get time to try it yet...
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by:crnz
ID: 16777570
The issue is that the software worked find for a year, and without any config changes, the problem occured.  I have looked for "close session", "protect disc" or any other such inidcator or setting before posting this question, and none are obvious to me at this stage.  The fact that this is a change that happened when the software and config were untouched suggests to me the problem is external to Backup My PC, like the underlying code for Windows or CD-R/RW drives themselves.  But I'm happy to go look and do things when I am offered firm suggestions.
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by:
scrathcyboy earned 600 total points
ID: 16777976
As I told you before, it is some new CF from some new windows update.

Microsoft windows updates are FULL of errors.  UNDO this useless MS windows update.
Get back to the previous setup and you will see everything works.  Dont rely on MS windows updates for anything but problems.
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by:crnz
ID: 16778041
I have a big problem with that advice.  What happens if I recommend this to these clients and they get overrun due to missing some security updates?  You can bet your bottom buck that they'll blame for having given them poor advice.

Rolling back windows updates and then turning them off isn't an option I can sell.  This is happening at a finacial advisory institution where they have the most detailed personal information on their clients' health and finances.  

We have to change to different backup sofwtare.  

I was hoping there was a more generic answer to CD-RW suddently turning "read only" - even to the point Backup My PC can't access them.
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by:rindi
ID: 16779796
All you need to do is erase the CD-RW's before reusing them. It surprises me that you didn't have to do that in the first place, as CD's whether they are RW or R, are read only by normal standards. There is a setting in backupItUp which you can set to "Erase rewritable disc automatically when required", though. Appart from that I advise to use CD-R's only, I've had bad experiance with CD-RW, they aren't reliable and don't last long. Do your customers regularly restore data from these media and test it's integrity? That is an absolute essentiality. What is the point of having backups that can't be used after a restore?
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by:crnz
ID: 16780716
"All you need to do is erase the CD-RW's before reusing them"

Love to.

EVen Nero says they are "Write Protected".

"I've had bad experiance with CD-RW, they aren't reliable and don't last long"

Well, one set were coming up to perhaps their 100th use, and happy for them to perhaps be thrown out for new ones.

But the other set were brand new.  Went "write protected" on their first use.

"Do your customers regularly restore data from these media and test it's integrity? That is an absolute essentiality. What is the point of having backups that can't be used after a restore?"

We found that when we need to restore from them some months ago, everything worked as expected.  The monitor the success of each backup, which is why they reported the "Write protected" error immediately.
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by:rindi
ID: 16782232
If you can't erase the CD-RW and there was no password protection set in the backup job, then the media isn't good. As I said, RW media is generally very unreliable. Go for CD-R media. And do regular restores, don't rely on the messages backitup shows, those don't really tell you if the backup is good or not. Only an actual restore will tell you that. If you were able to restore one backup from a couple of months back, you were probably just lucky.
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