(I am using a Windows based system and alternatives may be required for Mac and Linux/Unix)
This is the stage of converting your CDs to digital form by "ripping" the CD to create the digital file and storing it as a data or computer file. I set up a folder called digital=music-streamer in the music folder of my Windows files. I set this as the home folder in the CD ripping software.
Before you can start you will need to identify the software you are going to use and the file type that you want to use for the digital files probably FLAC or WAV.
The software I chose was dBpoweramp CD ripping software and the file type FLAC.
I viewed the CD ripping as a one off task and felt it was important to aim to use the best software and storage arrangements. I did not want to have to do the job again.
The FLAC file type is a lossless format (as is WAV) and the sound is not compressed and so can always be recreated as an identical copy of the original. By comparison lossy formats like mp3 compress and lose some of the original sound which can never be recovered.
It should be noted that there are options to compress the FLAC files which will reduce file sizes but this does not compress the sound. With FLAC (and WAV) you always recover the original sound.
The typical file size for an individual track is around 30mb and for an album around 330mb depending upon playing time. My present digital library of around 700 CDs occupies around 128gb of file storage space.
I used the Windows version of dBpoweramp CD ripping software [ link ] but there versions for Mac and Linux.