I do not have the drive but this is what I've read/think:
1: Unsure, but probably up to SD 2.9 at least.
2: Not DVD-RAM
3: Yes it supports writing CD-R discs and will thus read the ATIP = use the original disc or use an ATIP hider for the backup disc. CloneCD tray along with others supports the hide ATIP option.
4: Probably about the same. ( 8x max DVDR/RW reading).