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  1. #1
    5 Star Lounger
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    Question How to erase some files on DVD-RW disc in Windows 7

    I'm trying to re-use a DVD-RW disc by creating space on it. Want to erase files I don't want and keep the ones I do. Is this possible?

    Windows support method (My Computer -> double click DVD drive to list files and select ones to erase didn't work. Well, at least it produced a list of file names that I could make no sense out of. Their method for erasing a disc completely worked just fine.

    Does anyone know of a method for doing this that shows you the names of the items so you know which ones are the ones you're trying to erase?

    On the other hand, is the solution more trouble than it's worth? I mean, if it's complicated, would I be better to just live with the misrecorded files and not try to recoup the space - use an empty disc to record?

    This is a tiny little issue, but it bugs me that I can't figure out how to do it when MS support made it sound as if it were do-able! Maybe I don't have a "Live File System", which I think Windows support said was necessary. Of course, I have no idea what file system type I do have - recording on DVD is a new thing for me!

    Any advice (a way to do it or forget about it) appreciated!

    Linda

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  3. #2
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    Linda, I am not sure this is possible, but, I have found DVD-RW somewhat unreliable. I would not rely on them to keep valuable backups or valuable data.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


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  4. #3
    5 Star Lounger
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    Thanks, Ted (do you ever get a break from this Lounge?). Don't worry: I neglected to mention I was talking about recording of mindless TV shows like Masterpiece Mystery. Recorded on a separate combo VCR/DVD recorder. Don't plan to use these discs in the computers for back up.

    Sorry I forgot to include those details in my original post!

    Linda

  5. #4
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    Every once in a while I take a break to eat or sleep! I have never tried to erase a portion of DVD-RW. Heck I have about 20 that have been sitting in a drawer for several years. I just don't trust them, but for your application they should work. You might have to format the entire DVD-RW rather than delete parts.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


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  6. #5
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Irene,

    To the best of my knowledge you have to stick with the complete erase if you are going to use then in a DVD TV type recorder as it will want to lay down it's own formatting. As far as erasing some data from a DVD/RW you can only do it if when the disc is formatted you select the "as USB/Floppy" option. It may be data option depending on your formatting software. Sorry I'm not in a position to test things like this just now.
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

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  7. #6
    Gold Lounger Roderunner's Avatar
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    Hi Linda,
    I use dvd-rw to store my personal data (5 folders with many sub folders). When one of them gets updated, I insert the dvd and drag the ones I want to keep to the desktop, erase the dvd then re burn the dvd. I've used the same disc for a few years.
    George's PC Specs. / Laptop. Desktop.

  8. #7
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    Thumbs up

    Thanks, guys! Had decided that, in this case (i.e., DVD-RW used solely for recording TV shows), I needed to erase the whole disc to re-use it. If I wanted to preserve a TV program that was on it, just forget about erasing the 2 or 3 TV recording "mistakes" and leave them there.

    Then I re-read Roderunner and thought I'd go back and try again ... bingo! I found if I tested the gobbledygook names of files I saw listed on the DVD, I could find the one that represented the desired program. I moved it to desktop, tested/played it from there and, when it worked, went back and erased the whole disc. I then moved the files I wanted back onto the cleaned off DVD (after first reformatting it, ensuring this time I selected "treat as USB" option, just in case) and there they were!

    I'm so excited! It's always great to learn something new here ... and to be able to keep a record of the steps by being able to check back in to this post any time. As I have said many times before, thank the tech gods for this Lounge and, especially, the terrific Loungers who inhabit it and give SO freely of their time and expertise!

    Linda

    PS Ted, I'm glad you take some breaks at least!!

  9. #8
    Gold Lounger Roderunner's Avatar
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    Linda,
    I used the USB setting for my DVD-RW only once and it rendered it unusable after adding/removing items a few times.
    George's PC Specs. / Laptop. Desktop.

  10. #9
    5 Star Lounger
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    Oh. Can I do what I did with the other setting? And should I redo the process using it? Or just choose the other formatting option next time?

    Linda

  11. #10
    Gold Lounger Roderunner's Avatar
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    Hi Linda,
    insert a dvd-rw in your optical drive. Right click & select 'Open'. Drag any files you want to keep to the desktop. Now, click 'Erase this disc'.
    When done, re open the optical drive and this will appear:-

    DVD.jpg

    You can name it as you want instead of the date. These are the settings I use.
    If 'Like a USB flash drive' is used, your disc wont last very long.
    George's PC Specs. / Laptop. Desktop.

  12. #11
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    I know this is a little late, but to do what you want to do, you can initialize the disk with the UDF format (packet writing).

    The 3 most popular (free) programs are:
    1) Microsoft's 'Live File System' (as opposed to 'Mastered').
    2) Nero's 'InCD' (yes, it works on DVDs).
    3) 'DLA'. IBM version (works on compatible drives). If you have a Dell - then use Dell's version (only works on Dell drives).

    This enables you to treat the disk as an extra drive, giving you access to individual files and drag/drop capabilities.

    Downside -> Many DVD 'players' do not support any UDF revision other than version 1.02, and some not at all . You may have to watch it on a computer (or hook the computer up to the TV - if you are able). Apple also has issues with this format.

  13. #12
    3 Star Lounger
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    In 'old' days, I did the DVDRW thing too. There were DVD recorder-player + integrated TV tuner in the market. You recorded the video on DVDR or DVDRW. Then you time-shifted to view the recorded content.
    Later there were same kind of machines but with internal hard drive. And there were also Tivo. Tivo machines were much more expensive. The HD (1080p) machines were even in the $1000s range. Also Tivo required subscription service. I even hacked the machine to adding bigger hard drive, add one more, or add external hard drive to it. Even 'rooted' the Tivo ... all in the name of saving money and for fun.
    Fast forward to today.
    There are DVD players (less than $100, some around $50) that accept USB flash drive, even accept USB hard drive on some.
    May I suggest record on to USB flash, or copy DVDRW content to USB flash. Now you can play the USB flash drive content on your TV via the DVD player. You could elect to jump the unwanted video when you play the content. Can reuse the DVDRW disc many many times. This of course is assuming you still use the DVD recorder to record TV/cable content.
    For more money, there are stand alone media player that is hooked directly to TV and can play almost any video from USB flash and USB hard drive.
    And then there are streaming services such as Netflix ...
    But that's another subject.
    Technology is wonderful ... and we are like chasing after a mirage around and around in Mojavy Desert.

  14. #13
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    For some reason, I didn't get a notice re. your clarifying post Roderunner - I apologize for being late in responding and thanking you for it.

    Also see 2 more interesting and fact-filled posts since yours: will need to spend more time reading them to understand them fully, but do understand your directions. Your screenshot is what I saw after I erased the disc and was ready to reformat it. Thanks! I'll try that and post back once I have ...

    Linda

  15. #14
    New Lounger
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    Have you ever considered using DVD-RAM disks. While more expensive than DVD-RW, they can be written many more times and can be used in the same way as hard disks.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DVD-RAM

    Bill

  16. #15
    4 Star Lounger
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    Why mess about reusing DVD-RW? A good quality disc only costs about 25p - probably less in the US - so why not just use a new disc?

    George

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