CD-ROM won't read.

  Barrykneeshaw 17:48 17 Dec 2003

Suddenly my CD-ROM won't read CD-ROM disks of any type. Windows XP Home tells me that the CD-ROM is present & device manager tells me it's working OK.
But when I put a CD-ROM into the drive it won't open or run anything. Error message "The request could not be performed because of an I/O device error" is received when I use the Run command & very similar when I try to access the drive from the Command prompt. The latest Nortons AV gave me "Alert:Malicious Script detected. Object:FileSystem Object, Activity: GetSpecial Folder, File:helpctr.exe" I selected the recommended "Stop this script" & ran Nortons. it did NOT detect a virus. I am also running Zone Alarm firewall.
The PC is a e-machine e770 with DVD and CD-RW.
I am completely lost here. Dare I run the supplied recovery disks thru the DVD drive or does the I/O error message preclude this? If possible I don't want to format my hard drive. I don't even understand what the I/O error message means anyway! Can anybody assist, please?

  citadel 18:53 17 Dec 2003

when my cd rom had problems it was because the laser was not working properly and caused reading errors. I just got a new one as they are very cheap.

  handy4x 18:53 17 Dec 2003

try to recover to a previous stable date in system restore, all programs /accesories/system restore and folow the instructions and you may get back before the virus struck then run norton again with the latest updates

  Barrykneeshaw 22:44 17 Dec 2003

Sadly system restore even to "way back" hasn't helped, but thanks handy4x, it was worth a go.
I may have to go Citadels route but before I do has anyone else any suggestions? I am particularly worried about that I/O device error message.

  MAJ 22:51 17 Dec 2003

Is there a chance that you could try the drive in another PC, Barrykneeshaw, that'll tell you for sure if the drive is kaput or not?

  Barrykneeshaw 23:58 17 Dec 2003

Thanks Maj, that's worth a go this weekend (assuming Xmas allows) in the meantime can anyone else explain the I/O message? Could my BIOS also have been affected? Surely not?

  FormatKing 01:41 18 Dec 2003

ther e are some virus that can affect cd rom drives make sure cd rom 1 st boot device in bios then try booting from your win xp cd if that works cd rom drive ok and software or virus prob

  Stuartli 09:17 18 Dec 2003

Have you checked the leads/cable connections are tight?

The most likely reason, apart from a faulty lead, is that the laser has given up the ghost.

New CD-ROM drives (you actually mention both CD and DVD drivers) are only around £10-12 at present and a DVD-ROM (much better value) not all that more expensive.

If you actually have a DVD-ROM drive, most have two lasers, with one for DVDs and the other for CDs - the latter's laser might have gone AWOL.

  Barrykneeshaw 19:18 20 Dec 2003

Thanks all! I'll wait until after Xmas & get a new one fitted. Best wishes to everybody for the Xma Season!

  Barrykneeshaw 22:51 28 Dec 2003

Bought a new CD-RW for £30.00 & fitted it in 5 minutes. Works perfectly now. Thanks to all for their help!

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