I bought this USB powered external DVD writer to use with both my desktop and netbook. It is very slim, lightweight and easily portable but also seems durable. One thing you should be aware of, nearly all of these portable USB drives require two USB sockets to ensure efficient operation - this drive comes with a "double plugged" USB cable. This is because the USB is used not only for data transfer but power as well. My experience is that these USB ports will, in many cases, need to be USB ports on the host computer itself - sometimes a drive like this won't work properly via a USB hub.
This drive has a positive draw action and an LED confirms operation. The SE-208AB is capable of playing back video DVDs (assuming you have player software - most machines will have this) and does a good job of writing to both DVD and CD - I've tried TDK, Imation, Sony, Tesco & Verbatim media and all work well. Bundled with the drive is a copy of Nero Essentials which is good piece of burning software and worth a fair sum on its own.
This is a good value, high performing CD/DVD writer from Samsung (who collaborate with Toshiba in the case of these drives) with a useful piece of software thrown in. Clearly, this is already a "value" product leaving no margin for a case to be included, but, my "Blue Peter" tip is that you can easily make a case. I suggest you buy one of those cheap DVD cases that hold around 12 discs which you can get from most supermarkets, cut the DVD holders out and you'll have a durable case for this drive which should be the right size - hope this helps.
Overall, an excellent portable DVD drive at a good price. Recommended.