CDRW(1) User Commands CDRW(1)


cdrw - CD read and write


cdrw -i [-vSCO] [-d device] [-p speed] [image-file]

cdrw -a [-vSCO] [-d device] [-p speed] [-T audio-type] audio-file1

cdrw -x [-v] [-d device] [-T audio-type] track-number out-file

cdrw -c [-vSC] [-d device] [-p speed] [-m tmp-dir]
[-s src-device]

cdrw -b [-v] [-d device] all | session | fast

cdrw -L [-v] [-d device]

cdrw -M [-v] [-d device]

cdrw -l [-v]

cdrw -h


The cdrw command provides the ability to create data and audio CDs. This
command also provides the ability to extract audio tracks from an audio
CD and to create data DVDs. The CD or DVD device must be MMC-compliant to
create a CD or DVD with the cdrw command.

cdrw searches for a CD or DVD writer connected to the system, unless you
specify a device with the -d option. If cdrw finds a single such device,
it uses that device as the default CD or DVD writer for the command.

When more than one CD or DVD writer is connected to the system, use the
-d option to indicate which device is desired. The device name can be
specified in one of the following ways: /dev/rdsk/cNtNdNsN, cNtNdNsN,
cNtNdN, or a name used by volume manager, such as cdrom or cdrom1. Using
the -l option provides a list of CD or DVD writers.

For instructions on adding a USB-mass-storage-class-compliant CD-RW or
DVD-RW device to your system, see scsa2usb(4D).

Creating Data CDs

When creating data CDs, cdrw uses the Track-At-Once mode of writing. Use
the -i option to specify a file that contains the data to write on CD
media. If you don't specify this option, cdrw reads data from standard

In either case, the data is typically prepared by using the mkisofs
command to convert the file and file information into the ISO 9660 format
used on CDs. See the examples that include use of this command.

Creating Data DVDs

cdrw can create single-session data DVDs on DVD+RW or DVD-RW devices
using images generated from mkisofs. These disks can be mounted as HSFS
file systems. When making data DVDs, cdrw uses Disk-At-Once (DAO) mode of
writing, which closes the media when writing is completed and prevents
any further sessions from being added. The image should be prepared in
advance when writing an image to the DVD media since DAO mode requires
that the size of the image be known in advance.

Creating Audio CDs

Use the -a option to create an audio CD. Single or multiple audio files
can be specified with this option. All of the audio files should be in a
supported audio format. Currently approved formats are:

Sun .au files with data in Red Book CDDA form

RIFF (.wav) files with data in Red Book CDDA form

.cda files having raw CD audio data (that is, 16 bit PCM stereo at
44.1 KHz sample rate in little-endian byte order)

.aur files having raw CD data in big-endian byte order

If no audio format is specified, cdrw tries to identify the audio file
format based on the file extension. The case of the characters in the
extension is ignored. If a format is specified using the -T option, it is
assumed to be the audio file type for all the files specified. Also,
using the -c option closes the session after writing the audio tracks.
Therefore, the tracks to be written should be specified in a single
command line.

Extracting Audio

cdrw can also be used for extracting audio data from an audio CD with the
-x option. The CD should have tracks in Red Book CDDA form. By default,
the output format is based on the file extension. A user can specify a
sun, wav, cda, or aur output format with the -T option.

Copying CDs

cdrw can be used to copy single session data CD-ROMs and Red Book audio
CDs. When copying a CD, cdrw looks for a specified source device. If no
source device is specified when using the -c option, the current CD
writer is assumed to be the source. cdrw extracts the track or tracks
into a temporary file and looks for a blank writable CD-R/RW media in the
current CD writer. If no media is found, insert a blank writable CD media
in the current CD writer. If the default temporary directory does not
have enough space, an alternate directory can be specified by using the
-m option.

Erasing CD-RW or DVD-RW Media
Users have to erase the CD-RW media before it can be rewritten. With the
-b option, the following flavors of erasing are currently supported:

Erases the last session.

Minimally erases the media.

Erases the entire media.

If the session erasing type is used, cdrw erases the last session. If
there is only one session recorded on the CD-RW (for example, a data or
audio CD-RW created by this tool), then session erasing only erases the
portion that is recorded, leaving behind a blank disk. This is faster
than erasing the entire media. For DVD media, using the -b session erases
the whole media.

The fast erasing type minimally erases the entire media by removing the
PMA and TOC of the first session. It does not erase the user data and
subsequent tracks on the media, but the media is treated as if it were a
blank disk. If a complete erase is of the media is necessary, use the all

The all erasing type should be used if it is a multisession disk, the
last session is not closed, or disk status is unknown, and you want to
erase the disk. With this type of erasing, cdrw erases the entire disk.

DVD+RW media does not support erasing. To re-use DVD+RW media, simply
write a new image onto the media. cdrw formats and overwrites the
existing media automatically.

Checking device-list or media-status
You can list a system's CD or DVD writers by using the -l option. Also,
for a particular media, you can get the blanking status and table of
contents by using the -M option. The -M option also prints information
about the last session's start address and the next writable address.
This information, along with the -O option, can be used to create
multisession CDs. Refer to the mkisofs(8) man page for more information.


The following options are supported:

Creates an audio disk. At least one audio-file name must be
specified. A CD can not have more than 99 audio tracks, so no more
than 99 audio files can be specified.

Blanks CD-RW or DVD-RW media. The type of erasing must be specified
by the all, fast, or session argument. DVD+RW media does not
support blanking, but can be rewritten without the need for

Copies a CD. If no other argument is specified, the default CD
writing device is assumed to be the source device as well. In this
case, the copy operation reads the source media into a temporary
directory and prompts you to place a blank media into the drive for
the copy operation to proceed.

This option is obsolete.

This option used to cause cdrw to query the drive to determine
media capacity. This is now the default behavior.

Specifies the CD or DVD writing device.

Help. Prints usage message.

Specifies the image file for creating data CDs or DVDs. The file
size should be less than what can be written on the media. Also,
consider having the file locally available instead of having the
file on an NFS-mounted file system. The CD writing process expects
data to be available continuously without interruptions.

Lists all the CD or DVD writers available on the system.

Closes the disk. If the media was left in an open state after the
last write operation, it is closed to prevent any further writing.
This operation can only be done on re-writable CD-RW media.

Uses an alternate temporary directory instead of the default
temporary directory for storing track data while copying a CD or
DVD. An alternate temporary directory might be required because the
amount of data on a CD can be huge. For example, the amount of data
can be as much as 800 Mbytes for an 80 minute audio CD and 4.7
Gbytes for a DVD. The default temporary directory might not have
that much space available.

Reports media status. cdrw reports if the media is blank or not,
its table of contents, the last session's start address, and the
next writable address if the disk is open. DVD+RW does not support
erasing and always has some content on the media.

Keeps the disk open. cdrw closes the session, but it keeps the disk
open so that another session can be added later on to create a
multisession disk.

Sets the CD writing speed. For example, -p 4 sets the speed to 4X.
If this option is not specified, cdrw uses the default speed of the
CD writer. If this option is specified, cdrw tries to set the drive
write speed to this value, but there is no guarantee of the actual
speed that is used by the drive.

Specifies the source device for copying a CD or DVD.

Simulation mode. In this mode, cdrw operates with the drive laser
turned off, so nothing is written to the media. Use this option to
verify if the system can provide data at a rate good enough for CD

CD-R, CD-RW (not MRW formatted), DVD-R, and DVD-RW media support
simulation mode (-S). DVD-RAM, DVD+R, DVD+RW, any MRW-formatted
media, and some others do not support simulation mode (-S).

Audio format to use for extracting audio files or for reading audio
files for audio CD creation. The audio-type can be sun, wav, cda,
or aur.

Verbose mode.

Extracts audio data from an audio track.


Example 1: Creating a Data CD or DVD

example% cdrw -i /local/iso_image

Example 2: Creating a CD or DVD from a Directory

This example shows how to create a CD or DVD from the directory tree

example% mkisofs -r /home/foo 2>/dev/null | cdrw -i -p 1

Example 3: Extracting an Audio Track Number

This example shows how to extract audio track number 1 to

example% cdrw -x -T wav 1 /home/foo/song1.wav

Example 4: Using wav Files

This example shows how to create an audio CD from wav files on disk.

example% cdrw -a song1.wav song2.wav song3.wav song4.wav

Example 5: Erasing CD-RW or DVD-RW Media

This example shows how to erase rewritable media.

example% cdrw -b all

Example 6: Creating a Data CD or DVD with Multiple Drives

This example shows how to create a data CD or DVD on a system with
multiple CD, DVD-R, or DVD-RW drives.

example% cdrw -d c1t6d0s2 -i /home/foo/iso-image

Example 7: Checking Data Delivery Rate

This example shows how to verify that the system can provide data to a
CD-RW or a DVD drive at a rate sufficient for the write operation.

example% cdrw -S -i /home/foo/iso-image

Example 8: Running at a Higher Priority

This example shows how to run cdrw at a higher priority (for root user

example# priocntl -e -p 60 cdrw -i /home/foo/iso-image

Example 9: Creating a Multi-session Disk

This examples shows how to create the first session image by using
mkisofs and recording it onto the disk without closing the disk.

example% cdrw -O -i /home/foo/iso-image

Additional sessions can be added to an open disk by creating an image
with mkisofs using the session start and next writable address reported
by cdrw.

example% cdrw -M

Track No. |Type |Start address
1 |Data | 0
Leadout |Data | 166564

Last session start address: 162140
Next writable address: 173464

example% mkisofs -o /tmp/image2 -r -C 0,173464 -M \
/dev/rdsk/c0t2d0s2 /home/foo


audioconvert(1), priocntl(1), scsa2usb(4D), sd(4D), policy.conf(5),
attributes(7), rbac(7), mkisofs(8)

System Administration Guide: Devices and File Systems


The CD writing process requires data to be supplied at a constant rate to
the drive. Keep I/O activity to a minimum and shut down any related I/O
applications while writing CDs.

When making copies or extracting audio tracks, use an MMC compliant
source CD-ROM drive. The CD writer can be used for this purpose.

Before writing a CD, ensure that the media is blank by using the -M
option. You can use the -S simulation mode to test the system to make
sure it can provide data at the required rate. cdrw turns on buffer
underrun protection for drives that support it and recovers from most
stalls. If the system is not able to provide data at a constant rate or
frequent stalling occurs, you can lower the speed by using the -p option.
You can also try to run cdrw at a higher priority by using the
priocntl(1) command.

If you know that the CD-R/RW drive can operate at different write speeds,
use the -p option. Some commercially available drives handle the drive
speed setting command differently, so use this option judiciously.

The cdrw command uses rbac(7) to control user access to the devices. By
default, cdrw is accessible to all users but can be restricted to
individual users. Refer to the System Administration Guide: Devices and
File Systems for more information.

To burn CDs as a non-root user hal must be enabled and the user must be
on the console. hal, that is the svc:/system/hal SMF service, is enabled
by default, therefore, typically this requires no special action.

The user must be logged onto the console. /dev/console is also correct.
Previously, users could log in remotely, for example, by using telnet or
ssh, and be able to burn CDs. This would work unless the administrator
had changed the default configuration to deny solaris.device.cdrw
authorization. See policy.conf(5).

May 13, 2017 CDRW(1)