Google was a bit late to enter the laptop race, but with Chromebook they have proven that they are a worthy competitor to their Windows and Mac counterparts (Chromebooks are now more popular than MacBooks). According to Google itself, Chromebooks are not like other laptops because they run on Google-made Chrome OS. Critiques have argued that Chrome OS is basically a desktop version of Android. However, there is much more to Chrome OS and Chromebooks, which we shall show you in this guide. We will also introduce the ten best CD drives for Chromebook, which could help you to extend the functionality of your laptop.

What is Chromebook & Do Chromebooks have CD drives?

Chromebooks are laptops (sometimes tablets) that run on Google’s own Chrome OS, rather than the more ‘traditional’ operating systems such as Windows, macOS, or Linux. If you are familiar with stock Android, then Chrome OS will be familiar to you, as it is built around Google’s cloud apps such as Chrome, Gmail, Google Photos and much more. Chromebooks have been doing so well, such that they outsold MacBooks by a ratio of five to one at the end of 2020. Here are five more things you need to know about Chromebooks;


1. They can run Windows software

An undeniable fact about operating systems is that Windows has more to offer in terms of applications. For this reason, Google partnered with VMware, one of the most popular virtualization platforms to allow Windows app to run on Chrome OS. VMware is not free, and if you need it on a Chromebook, be prepared to pay for it.

2. There are no persistent internet connection requirements to use one

Google’s cloud apps, which are built in Chrome OS obviously require the internet to function . However, you can still use these apps offline on Chrome OS, and once you connect to the internet, your data will be synced.

3. They totally do not rely on cloud storage

Chromebooks are basically internet-based laptops, but that does not mean they lack local storage. Most, if not all of them come with decent solid-state storage, as well as SD card or USB storage expansion slots.

4. Some Chromebooks are faster than others

There are two types of processors built into Chrome OS machines, which are Intel x86 processors and ARM based chips. Intel x86 machines are in most cases faster than their ARM counterparts. Therefore, if you need more speed, you might want to consider Intel.

5. Google Drive is not a free option

If you buy a new Chromebook today, you will receive 100GB of free online storage. Unfortunately, this is a time-limited deal which ends two years after you purchase and activate the laptop. After that period, you pay $2 a month for the cloud storage.

Perhaps one of the most popular question that people ask is ‘do Chromebooks have CD drives?’ The short answer is no. That is because Chromebooks are primarily designed to be internet based machines. Moreover, most of them have ultra-slim profiles, which is something done to save weight on the machines. As such, it will be impossible to fit optical disc drives. If you need to use CDs and DVDs on your Chromebook, you might want to invest in an external CD drive. Therefore, we will list the 10 best external CD drives for Chromebooks on the next segment of this article.

10 Best external CD drives for Chromebook

There are many kinds of external CD drives available for Chromebooks, on popular shopping sites such as Amazon, eBay and Alibaba. This can definitely make choosing the right external CD disk drive difficult, given the immense number of devices you can find. Therefore, we have listed the ten best external CD drive for Chromebook;

1. Rioddas External CD Drive USB 3.0. It is portable, and it supports all CD and DVD disc types. It can also burn data.


2. Gotega External CD Drive USB 3.0. Supports all CD and DVD disc types, portable, and supports burning data.


3. Blingco External CD Drive USB 3.0. Also portable, this optical disc drive also supports burning data as well as all CD and DVD disc types. It also has a built-in ethernet port.


4. Gotega External CD Drive USB 3.0 with carrying case. As well as featuring all the standard features as the ones above, it also features a carrying case which makes it a good travel companion.


5. Apiker External CD Drive USB 3.0. While it is primarily a CD disc drive, it also features an SD card slot, as well as USB ports for input.


6. Amicool External CD Drive USB 3.0. It has 8X read speeds for DVD discs, and 24X CD read speed, The maximum burning speed is 8X. It is also one of the cheapest among this list.


7. Roofull External CD Drive USB 3.0. This devices’ strong selling point is its reliability. It has strong error-correcting, low impedance, and anti-interference ability ensure stable operation during use.


8. LMEN External CD Drive for laptops USB 3.0. This is probably the most stylish DVD drive on this list, and it is ultra-portable for travel. The data cable is also hidden behind premium material.


9. Cocopa External CD Drive for USB Type C 3.0. Probably not the best-looking device on this list, the biggest advantage of this device is its USB type C support.


10. YoMifin external CD drive for laptops, USB 3.0 Type C. This stylishly designed external DVD/CD drive is made of shock-proof, low-noise, anti-interference and high-durability aluminum alloy material.


How to connect a CD drive to a Chromebook

Given their slim profiles and designs, Google Chromebooks have no built-in CD drives. Fortunately, there are many external CD drives you could try on your Chromebook (refer to the previous segment to checkout the 10 best external CD drives for Chromebook). Moving on, the next important question to answer is how to connect external CD drive for Chromebook. Before you do that, you still need to remember these three points;

Any Chromebook external CD drive can only do the following;

  • 1.Read discs, but strictly for accepted file types.
  • 2. Play music, but only from accepted audio file types like MP3, AAC, etc.
  • 3. Play movies and videos, but only from accepted video file types like MP4 etc.
  • 4. Cannot burn any files or data to CD or DVD discs.

Therefore, to connect and use a CD drive to a Chromebook, follow the steps below;

Step 1: Connect the external optical drive to your Chromebook, by plugging it in via USB.

Step 2: Access your CD files, in the same way you would access all your other local files. You do that by clicking the Launcher and then selecting ‘Files’.

Best way to play DVDs on Chromebook without any CD drive

Connecting an external CD drive to your Chromebook will surely give you access to your favorite videos and mooches that you have stored on CDs or DVDs (just as long as the video file format is supported). However, playing DVDs on Chromebooks directly from an external CD drive is mot always ideal. Besides making it bulky, it is especially inconvenient to carry an external drive when you are traveling, after all Chromebooks are designed to be ultra portable computers.

Therefore, the best way to enjoy play CDs or DVDs on Chromebook is to rip and make soft copies of the media in popular formats such as MP4, MKV etc., after which you can transfer the files through USB or Google Drive. For this task, you will need a Windows or Mac computer (since Chromebooks do not support ripping, copying or burning CDs/DVDs). You will also need a DVD ripper, such as Leawo DVD Ripper. It is one of the best DVD rippers available for use today, because of its top of the class features such as;

  • Leawo DVD Ripper
  • Leawo DVD Ripper

    ☉ Decrypt and rip DVD discs with disc protection and region code
    ☉ Convert DVD to MP4, MKV, AVI, MOV, FLV, and other 180+ HD/SD formats
    ☉ Convert DVD main movie to videos for space saving
    ☉ Convert 2D DVD movies to 3D movies with 6 different 3D effects
    ☉ Fast conversion with NVIDIA CUDA, AMD APP and Intel Quick Sync acceleration technologies

This software has many more features, which you can learn about form the product page. It is available for Windows and macOS, and once you have downloaded this software, follow the steps below for using it;

Step 1: Load DVD source


Insert DVD disc to the drive, open Leawo Prof. Media, and then open the “Convert” module on the menu bar. Click "Add UHD/Blu-ray/DVD" button to load source disc. You could also add folder or ISO image file for converting.


    There are three loading modes for you to select: Full Movie, Main Movie and Custom Mode. Choose one according to your needs. After loading, you could select desired subtitle and audio track from source movies.

Step 2: Set output profile


Click the drop-down box next to "Add Photo" button and choose "Change" option to enter Profile panel, where you need to set output profile from "Format" or “Device” group according to personal needs.

Step 3: Set video and audio parameter (optional)


Click the same drop-down box and click "Edit" button to adjust video codec, audio codec, bit rate, aspect ratio, video size, frame rate, channel, and other parameters of output WMV video file according to your needs.

Step 4: Set output directory and start converting DVD


Hit the big green "Convert" button on the sub-menu bar. Then, set an output directory in the “Save to” box on the popup sidebar. After that, click the “Convert” button at the bottom to start to convert DVD movies.