How to put a CD or DVD into your computer

 

Your computer can play music CDs and DVDs and, if it’s powerful enough, can show films and TV programmes on disc. You can also buy new computer programs on disc or put blank discs into your computer to do things like copying photos, documents or music.
 
CDs and DVDs are played within optical disc drives that come as part of a computer. There are two types of these drives:
 
  • readers – these only read from the discs
  • writers (also known as recorders or burners) – these can copy data on to discs.
Many drives are reader-only, but writers are usually only available in combination with readers.
 
It can take a bit of detective work to figure out how to play a CD or DVD.
 
Follow these step-by-step instructions on how to put a CD or DVD into your computer
 
Step 1: First, you need to discover what sort of disc drive(s) you’ve got.
 
Computer disc drive
 
The PC above has two drives: a DVD reader at the top, and a combined DVD/CD reader/writer underneath. These are actually drawer-like trays, into which a DVD or CD is laid and then the tray is closed.
 
Laptop disc drive
 
The laptop above has a combined DVD/CD reader/writer on the side of the keyboard.
 
All-in-one and touch-screen computers often have a drive in one side, immediately behind the screen.
 
It’s also possible that access to the drive is only a slot. If this is the case, as it is in Apple iMac computers and iBook laptops, just gently feed in the disc and the computer will take it.
 
Step 2: Now you need to find out how to open your disc drive. This is normally done with the push of a button.
 
In the PC (right), the ‘open’ (or ‘eject’) buttons are underneath the tray. Opening disc drive
 
Laptop disc driveIn the laptop (left), the button is actually on the tray.
 
Press the button on your computer. If the tray is motorised, it will open completely. If not, it will open slightly and you can gently pull it open.
 
Step 3: Put your disc into your computer’s disc drive:
 
Computer disc drive
 
The tray is ‘indented’ so that the disc sits in it.
 
Which side of the disc is uppermost is important. The side that has writing on it should be facing up. If you have a computer with a slot drive, you should first position the disc so that the written side is facing you and then push it in gently.
 
Step 4: If the tray is motorised, press the button again and it will close. Don’t push it in manually – you could break it. However, if it isn’t motorised, press the tray gently until it clicks shut.
 
Step 5: An icon of the CD/DVD will appear on your computer desktop. At the same, you’ll see a menu asking you what you want to do with the disc.
 
CD options
 
The above menu appeared when an audio CD was put into a PC using Windows 7. If it had been a DVD or a computer program disc, a similar menu would have appeared. Once you’ve made your choice, the appropriate software will come into action to play the music, allow the film to be shown, launch the computer program or whatever.
 
Step 6: To eject the disc, close the software that you’ve been using with the CD/DVD. Then drag the CD/DVD icon to the ‘Recycle Bin’. This should cause the tray to open automatically if the drive is motorised so that you can remove the CD/DVD. If it’s not motorised, gently pull it open.
 
Don’t try to remove the CD/DVD from the tray without first getting rid of the icon from the screen – otherwise you could damage your computer.
 
Done!
 
Stephen Baird-Parker is a qualified ICT teacher.

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Comments

derek forster's picture

By derek forster on 27th July 2012

when I put the disc in the icon is not appearing on the screen so Ican't proceed with the operation
DU Community Manager's picture

By DU Community Manager on 5th September 2012

Hello there, Are you still having this issue? If so, place the CD in the drive as per the above instructions. You should see an icon appear on the desktop. If not, and you are using a machine running Windows, click on 'Start' and then 'Computer' and you should see the disk drive in question. If you have any more questions, you may find the Q&A forum on our community very useful!
Jim 's picture

By Jim on 30th December 2012

my laptop is a lenova is it motorised
DU Community Manager's picture

By DU Community Manager on 30th December 2012

Hello, we recommend posting your question on the 'Ask a Question' message board within our community (link to Community is here: www.digitalunite.com/community) as you will receive an answer far quicker that way. Best wishes
Ian Haw's picture

By Ian Haw on 5th January 2013

When I push button, the disc tray on hard drive will not open.
sta williams's picture

By sta williams on 6th January 2013

when i put my c d into my p.c the icon comes up play disc nothing else
DU Community Manager's picture

By DU Community Manager on 6th January 2013

Hello, we recommend posting your questions on the 'Ask a Question' message board within our community (link to Community is here: www.digitalunite.com/community) as you will receive an answer far quicker that way. Best wishes
Paul Glosson Sr.'s picture

By Paul Glosson Sr. on 14th February 2013

I would like to know the steps of playing back a CD or DVD. I don't know whitch one it is. Thanks
DU Community Manager's picture

By DU Community Manager on 14th February 2013

Hello, we recommend posting your question on the 'Ask a Question' message board within our community (link to Community is here: www.digitalunite.com/community) as you will receive an answer far quicker that way. Best wishes