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clicking DVD drive, won't burn


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#1 AmberStone81

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Posted 07 December 2010 - 02:14 AM

Hi everyone,

I have a question about the DVD drive in my PC. I was burning some files the other day and all of a sudden I got a message telling me to insert a writable medium. In the few days leading up to this, I'd get clicking sounds when I started my computer or when I'd open the drive to insert a disc. I'd periodically getting a short whooshing sound too, like a fan or something. Any ideas?

I tried the Knox CD_DVD fix for XP (which is what I have) and the Mats_Run program, and it didn't work. In fact, the Mats_Run one says neither of my drives can burn, which is strange because the one I use has burned fine in the past. I've also tried updating the drivers and uninstalling from the device manager and rebooting, but that didn't change anything. That's the extent of my knowledge though with these things. My DVD drive reads and plays DVDs fine, but the DVD-RW drive does neither. One thing I haven't tried yet is cleaning it with a cleaning disc, but I don't know if that'd take care of it. I've had my PC for almost four years.

I stopped by hoping it's a simple fix and that I won't have to get a new drive. Any advice you can offer is much appreciated.

Thanks,

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#2 MrBruce1959

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Posted 07 December 2010 - 01:01 PM

Hello and welcome to Bleepingcomputer.

DVD burner drives have a shorter life expectancy then we will ever realize.

The reason for this is the laser has to burn hotter then the average CD burner drives ever did, this causes the lasers in DVD burners to burn out quicker than the CD burners ever did. I know we expect better results than that for the price we pay for a DVD burner drive, but that is reality.

I would recommend cleaning the laser lens first, although cleaning disks are supposed to work, they really don't do as good a job as they claim.

The best results can be gained by removing the drive from the computer, opening the drives enclosure, gaining full access to the laser lens, then carefully cleaning the lens with a Q-tip or cotton swab dipped in isopropyl alcohol 70% and gently cleaning the lens.

Re-assemble the drive, put it back in and try using it again.

Please post back the results.

Bruce.

Edited by MrBruce1959, 07 December 2010 - 04:22 PM.

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#3 AmberStone81

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Posted 07 December 2010 - 02:46 PM

OK, I'll try cleaning it and see how it works. In the event that I do need to get a new drive, are the internal ones pretty much interchangeable these days or would I have to find a specific one for my PC? I guess I could get an external one, too, right?

Thanks, now off to try to clean this thing ...

#4 PolaBar

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Posted 07 December 2010 - 03:02 PM

Well, cleaning won't hurt, but it is unlikely to help. A dirty lens can indead lead to read/write problems, but won't cause clicking noises when booting with an empty drive. Most likely your drive is toast.

To replace, you just need to determine whether it is an IDE (most older drives) or SATA (many, but not all, newer drives) interface.

#5 Eyesee

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Posted 07 December 2010 - 04:01 PM

If the drive is clicking the problem is most likely in the drive itself.
Dvd burners are pretty cheap. I bought one the other day for a customer for under 40 bucks.
Personally, I prefer the LG drives. They are pretty solid IMO

The drive is easy to replace. Only tools required is a screwdriver.
You first need to determine the interface like Polabar says
Sometimes you have to take the front bezel of the case off to slide the drive out the front but that is just a matter of a couple of clips on the inside & it pops right off

If it is IDE (most are) make sure the red stripe for pin 1 faces the power connector
In the beginning there was the command line.

#6 MrBruce1959

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Posted 07 December 2010 - 04:31 PM

I just wanted to add.

The clicking noise during bootup shouldn't be DVD drive related at all, since in reality, if there is nothing in the drive, it would not attempt to read anything in the first place.

The clicking noise could be a hard drive related noise.

You may want to try and isolate the source of the noise you are hearing to be sure of its exact origin.
Noisy hard drives are signs of a potentially failing hard drive.

Noises inside a DVD drive can also be signs a foreign object may have been placed inside the drive.

Bruce.
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