"Blanking" an unwanted CD

Is it possible to use a CD/DVD writer to write over a CDR which has already been written, in order to destroy the contents of the CD? Is it the burner that usually refuses to write to the CD, or is it the software? Can we modify the firmware if it’s the burner?

If it was a CD-RW (rewriteable) then you could erase it.

CD-R’s are designed to be permanent archives.

When I want to get rid of a CD-R, I either shred it in my shredder, which is designed to handle CD’s and DVD’s, or I use Scissors to cut through the disk and dispose of it in a few pieces.

If you had a CD-RW, or DVD-RW, you could use something like ImgBurn, a free program, to format the disk, either as a quick format or a full format. Then you could burn the disk again. Rewriteables usually go for about a 1,000 burns before they lose their ability to be erased.

if you want to destroy the contents of a cdr (once written, cant be rewritten)… just melt it, or smash it to bits…

you can not write to a cdr once its been written to, its a limitation of the dye and the disk type, cdr != cdrw

I realize this, but I understand it as “cannot modify what has been written”. The data is just 1’s and 0’s, obviously one of those uses a stronger amount of power from the laser to write… suppose the 1’s use the most amount of power, and the 0’s use half the amount of power.

Can we change the 0 to a 1 by applying the amount of power required to write the 1 in the first place?

I’m not really wanting to do this to “destroy a cd”, since that’s easy. I’m working on a small project and trying to make a robotic device (based on a cd duplication tower)…

Again, just for clarification: I don’t want to reuse the CD with new data, I just want to make it unreadable by using the cd writer.

I very much doubt whether this is possible with a consumer-level CD or DVD burner, unless the firmware is rewritten.

Hi newbietech, welcome to CDFreaks! :slight_smile:

Plextor PX-755 and PX-760 drives can do this for CD and DVD media and the Plextor PlexWrite Premium can do this for CD media by using the PlexEraser function in PlexTools:

PlexEraser is a data destruction utility that makes a recorded CD-R disc unreadable. The drive will “re-record” over the Lead-in and data sectors of a write once disc rendering the disc data unusable.

The Plextor PlexEraser PX-0E100E is a dedicated device for doing this:

The PlexEraser, PX-0E100E, the environmentally friendly and high-tech alternative to the disc shredder designed for security-conscious organisations such as financial institutions, government departments, the military, research establishments - and any company with commercially sensitive data - it is the first security device in the world which destroys data on a CD/DVD. The PlexEraser enables discs to be destroyed without the organic dye leaking from the disc - something not possible with a disc shredder/manual shattering - and leaves them ready to be recycled without any data being recoverable.
You can read the CDFreaks review of this device here: PlexEraser PX-0E100E Review

Other drives cannot do this, although I guess it might be possible to create dedicated firmware for accomplishing the same thing.

Wacky technology.

I don’t know many people that can read a CD after you shred it… :stuck_out_tongue:

Pop it in a Microwave Oven for about 20 seconds. Saw it on Myth Busters. Nice light show and guaranteed unrecoverable.

lol… That is so freakin’ hilarious. Wow.

Thanks Dragemester: really valuable information… :flower:

dragemester: Weelll I see ya got a new picture there pilgrim.

yeah and be sure to do it on your own microwave as im sure your mothers wont appreciate it as it can damage the microwave. Furthermore, just for the sake of knowledge cds have been recoverd after being chopped with scissors, burned, i believe microwaved, and even smashed with a hammer…


Since we’re in the middle of December, I thought it was time to let the dragon show some Xmas spirit. :slight_smile:

Five seconds is enough 20 seconds and the smoke might kill you

Thanks for the welcome :slight_smile:

Other drives cannot do this, although I guess it might be possible to create dedicated firmware for accomplishing the same thing.

Very interesting technology, I’m trying to do something similar and did not know it already existed. So now my aim is to see if it’s just a firmware issue, or a technical difference in the hardware. I am nearly convinced that the hardware is physical the same and I just need to modify the software to do it.

please tell me if someone knows how this can be done or has any other info on this technolgy.

thank you everybody!

if erasing this cd is a must and in stead if mucking about with firmwares, can you not microware the disc for a wee while?, take a belt sander to it?

or are you wanting to see if a firmware hack can do this ?

I’m not interesting in erasing any particular CD, I’d like to work with the technology and see if it can be done… I’m sure it can, I just need to figure out how.

Perhaps you should reconsider the Hardware route. Yes, all you need do is install a magnetron in your DVD burner. That has the added bonus of allowing you to make albino toasted cheese sandwiches.