How do I erase that CD/DVD-RW media in Mac OS X?

I ran into a problem last night. Being relatively new to some of the mundane functionality of Mac OS X, I didn’t know off the top of my head how to erase the DVD-RW media I wanted to copy a couple of large files to. I was thinking it would be a right-click from within Finder, but– nope. That would be too ‘Windows-esque‘ (pardon the reference for those of you with PTSD as it relates to your Microsoft Windows experience).

So how to do it? Here’s how–

  1. Open up Disk UtilitiesScreen shot 2009-10-30 at 7.31.48 PMTIP!
           The easiest/quickest way I’ve found is to use Spotlight (command-spacebar) for this action. Just hit <Command-spacebar> and type

    'Disk Utility'

          , then choose the Disk Utility icon from the list! Easy!

    Screen shot 2009-10-30 at 7.34.10 PM

  2. Once you’ve opened Disk Utility, find the DVD/CD drive in the left pane, and highlight it.
    Screen shot 2009-10-30 at 7.39.08 PM
  3. Once the CD/DVD drive is selected, look at the right pane. Choose Erase from the selections at the top center of the pane.
    Screen shot 2009-10-30 at 7.40.22 PM
  4. Finally, choose either the Quickly or Completely (for questionable CD/DVD-RWs) option, and then click Erase.
    Screen shot 2009-10-30 at 7.42.13 PM
    Please note! Completely erasing media can take an hour to complete!

Perform these tasks, and you’ll have your media erased and ready to write to in no time!

How do you burn files to the DVD?

If you have the follow on question on how to burn things to DVD or CD media, the answer is ‘it depends’. For files, you Finder. Drag the files to the Media on the left pane (you’ll see a ‘hazard’ icon next to the unwritten DVD/CD).

Screen shot 2009-10-30 at 7.47.27 PM

Once you’ve placed all your files on the DVD (i.e., staged them), choose the DVD/CD writable media and choose the ‘Burn’ button.

Screen shot 2009-10-30 at 7.48.16 PM

For other things (movies, et cetera), try iDVD or iPhoto.

Have fun!! —Dave

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