Sorry to sound ignorant, but I know nil about dvd roms other than they play movies, is that the only thing xtra they can do? If I am buying a system to have a cdrw and a cdrom, should I instead buy a dvdrom and sub it in for the cdrom as the dvdrom will play cd's as well as dvd's - is this correct? I would still be able to burn a cd from the dvd drive to the cdrw, correct?
Yes, you will still be able to run CDs from the DVD drive, just like you will be able to copy from it. Besides being able to view DVD movies, you'll also be able to run software produced on DVDs (not too many titles out there at the moment).
Yes, your source drive must be able to keep up with the burner. You may encounter problems if you have them both on the same IDE channel.
Burnproof is a safeguard technology in many newer writers used to buffer against buffer underruns.
The 48x you see on your DVD ROM specs is actually a maximum speed. 99.9% of the time, it does not actually reach that speed, especially when it's reading from certain parts of the CD.
Most motherboards have 2 IDE channels - primary and secondary. Each IDE channel has their own connector on your motherboard. Each IDE channel will have a Master device and a Slave device. If your burner and DVD ROM are on the same IDE channel, meaning that they're connected by the same cable to the same connector on your motherboard, you may encounter problems of having the data flow keep up if you're copying on-the-fly. Only one device on the channel can be accessed at any particular moment.