For the past few years Apple Computer has been moving away from physical format drives in favor of digital downloads.
They have recently announced a redesigned iMac computer that is significantly thinner and lighter, and does not include an internal optical drive for CDs or DVDs. These new iMacs can use external USB optical drives, however.
Since we were not able to provide the campus with advance notice for planning purposes, ITS will provide a one-time replacement drive for Spring 2013 technology renewal iMacs only for those that require it. These drives will not be leased, and will not be replaced in subsequent years under the renewal program. Many people never use the optical drive on their computers, and instead use USB flash drives or save their data on the college network.
Please note that ITS will not include an optical drive as part of future Technology Renewal installs, or with the ‘standard’ pre-configured Apple iMac system which will be available for purchase later this week through the ITS Catalog in iProcurement.
We are working with the college's office supply vendor, Staples, to offer a variety of compatible USB optical drives for the iMac through their website. These devices are also available through many on-line and local vendors such as Amazon, Best Buy, and The Apple Store for Education. Pricing is between $30-$100 depending on whether or not you need “write-to” capabilities, that is, the ability to copy data from your computer and store it onto CD or DVD disk. These devices are considered ‘order on own’ items which departments may purchase using their procurement card.