No problem, I think I understand.
I found your original post, http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/167263/advent-7017-cddvd-failure-advice-needed/
There are replacement drives for those that are installed in laptops...perhaps we need to see if we can just find one for your laptop, obviating the perceived need for an external drive.http://download.gericom.com/NOTEBOOK/Win98.../N251S_1_01.pdf
The above manual also states that you have a swappable drive bay...where you can insert another optical drive.
I looked at replacement drives...too expensive ($100-plus), so let's forget replacing.
OTOH, this USB 2.0/firewire drive...seems a much better deal for U.S. personnel. I post the link merely for purposes of comparison, http://3btech.net/exmeusb2013f1.html
IMO, this is the sort of thing you should be looking for, since it will connect to either a USB port or a firewire port. Your laptop has both, according to specs/manual.
Strictly USB 2.0 external drives, examples: http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList....425%20-%20%2450
I think that's about all that I can suggest, at this point