DVD drive has power but doesn't read disks

  John Berriman 17:33 15 Aug 2005

Running Windows XP SP2, Samsung SD-816B DVD-ROM, and NEC DVD-RW ND-1300A drives.

NEC drive works fine, but the Samsung has only just given up the ghost. It's shown in Device Manager as operating properly but when I insert CD, CD-R, Audio disk or DVD the drive light flashes intermittently before asking for a disk to be inserted. The drive appears on "My Computer" OK, and power is obviously getting to the drive.

I've uninstalled and reinstalled the driver for the Samsung with no change in (non)performance.

Is this a sign that the drive should be replaced or has anyone got any good ideas I can try first?

Thanks in advance


  rawprawn 17:40 15 Aug 2005

I wonder if your compter is Dell? I had the same problem and found that in the first instance it would play but not record. That usually means that the laser has given up the ghost and it is not worth repairing.I think your Samsung might have ended it's usefull life!

Please do not abandon it on my say so, but that is my opinion.

  John Berriman 17:42 15 Aug 2005

PC is a e-machines 810 that I've been running fine for quite some while - the 2nd e-machines model I've owned with no real problems (apart from any inflicted by yours truly......).

  ACOLYTE 17:46 15 Aug 2005

Try a cd cleaner it may be a dirty lense,make sure the cable is fitted ok inside the pc,if you can take it out and try it in another pc,also try it on its own without the other player in the pc,if it still dont work i would say its had it day.

  pj123 18:00 15 Aug 2005

When you say: "I've uninstalled and reinstalled the driver for the Samsung with no change in (non)performance." What driver have you uninstalled and reinstalled. CD/DVD drives don't need any drivers, or do you mean the software to play CD/DVDs?

rawprawn, the Samsung SD-816B DVD-ROM is only a DVD rom so it won't record anyway.

  John Berriman 18:07 15 Aug 2005

I removed driver for the drive through Device Manager then retarted PC for Windows to pick up "new" Plug & Play devices which it did, thereby seeking out the driver from XP itself. The driver it uses is 5.1.2535.0 from Microsoft Windows Publisher.

And in response to a previou spost, I can't get the drive to recognise there is a disk so can't get my CD lens cleaner to work.

  Totally-braindead 18:36 15 Aug 2005

If Windows detects the drive again when you delete it and restart but the drive still can't read the disks then as far as I'm concerned its probably knackered and you'll need to buy another one. I take you're point about not being able to clean it as the drive won't recognise the cleaning disk, the only other suggestion I have is to remove the drive take off the cover and by sliding the tray you should be able to get to the lasers and clean them manually. However since its a DVD Rom drive it will have 2 sets of lasers, one to read CDs and one which reads DVDs. Since neither are working I think you'll be wasting your time. A new DVD Rom is less than £20 click here

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 18:46 15 Aug 2005

before you condemn it

remove IDE channel drive is on then switch off PC.

Open case ensure IDE cable is fully inserted in rear of drive and on motherboard.

Refit cover and reboot.

XP should then find and install new hardware.

If this fails then its lookimg like a dud laser.

  John Berriman 18:51 15 Aug 2005


Sounds great !

Ummmm - how do I remove IDE channel ?

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 19:06 15 Aug 2005

settings - Control panel - system -hardware -device manager - scroll down to IDE click on secondary channel (DVD usually on this one as master on primary is your hard drive.)

right click -select remove- and ok

  Stuartli 19:10 15 Aug 2005

The only driver required by a CD/DVD-ROM or rewriter is the basic Windows CDROM driver.

Normally I would guess that either the CD or the DVD laser had given up the ghost in your DVD-ROM drive, but it would be unusual for both to do so at the same time.

However, DVD-ROM drives are so cheap these days that after checking the cables for proper connection and firmness for a final time you find that it still doesn't work, then replacing it won't prove too expensive.

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