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CD/DVD drive problem


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#1 bs10

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Posted 16 September 2011 - 12:18 PM

I have a Toshiba Satellite A105-S4074. My operating system is XP, Media Center Edition, Version 2002, Service Pack 3. My CD drive is a Matbleepa DVD-RAM UJ-841S

Also, I just had to reinstall windows as well because of a different issue. I was hoping that would take care of this problem, but it didn't.

I don't use my CD/DVD much anymore. However, since I reinstalled windows, I lost Microsoft Office, so now I need to reinstall that program on my laptop. Unfortunately, my CD drive doesn't recognize the disc.

The drive doesn't recognize any disc that I try to run, whether it is a program like that, a music CD or a blank CD. It hasn't worked for a couple years now. The only thing that I've found that I could do is burn a DVD. Other than that, it is basically useless. I can hear the disc spin a few times, but that's about it.

I've let the problem go for awhile now, but I would like to get it resolved so I can reinstall Microsoft Office. I've just started troubleshooting this problem, but I figured posting on here might be the best and most direct way to get a resolution.

I tried updating the drivers and doing a couple other things (right-clicking on the CD/DVD drive>Sharing and Security>Recording> and then "enabling CD recording on this drive"). I saw this suggestion in an older forum so I gave it a try, but it didn't help me so I reverted it back to the way it was before.

Here's a couple other things that might help determine the problem. I've recently seen the prompt: "D:\ is not accessible The request could not be performed because of an I/O device error." This was the first time I've seen this error.

Also, when I go into the device manager, it says that the device is working properly. The Driver Date is 7/1/2001 and the Version is 5.1.2535.0.

Hopefully that's enough info to get started. I'm going to keep researching the problem in the meantime. Thanks for the help, it's greatly appreciated!

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#2 hamluis

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Posted 16 September 2011 - 03:46 PM

You might try Microsoft Fixit .

Louis

#3 bs10

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Posted 17 September 2011 - 10:45 AM

I already tried running that, but it was uanble to resolve the problem.

Sorry, I forgot to include that in the original post. I'm not sure what else to try. It's still being listed in the BIOS, so I don't know what to do now. I think it might be the read head.. I tried using a can of air cleaning hoping that would help, but it didn't.

Any other suggestions?

#4 hamluis

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Posted 17 September 2011 - 12:36 PM

No, not really.

That's an MCE system which (IMO) means that it's old, in computer time.

If that were a desktop, I would not be surprised if the optical drive failed after a year or two...so I would not be surprised if the drive is done.

http://superuser.com/questions/34579/matbleepa-dvd-ram-uj-841s-cant-read-burned-dvds-or-cds

Louis

#5 bs10

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Posted 17 September 2011 - 09:28 PM

So assuming I need a new drive, what would you recommend? I'm not really sure what my options are right now..an external disc drive or replacing the whole unit. I don't want to put a lot of money in it, but it does still work well so I don't mind putting some in to get it working properly.

For the time being, do you know any ways around it, so I can install Microsoft Office right now. Is it possible to load MO onto a flash drive or external hard drive and use one of those to install it on my laptop?

Thanks for the help

#6 hamluis

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Posted 19 September 2011 - 09:53 AM

I can't answer any questions about alternate ways of installing Office...I don't use USB drives for anything and always have replacement optical drives.

Louis

#7 bs10

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Posted 19 September 2011 - 10:00 AM

Ok, so is replacing my drive a feasible task? How much does something like that cost and do you think it's worth it? What would you recommend for an average user using a laptop that's four years old. My laptop still runs well, but I'd like to be able to have a drive to install future programs and what not.

Thanks for your suggestions

#8 hamluis

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Posted 19 September 2011 - 04:39 PM

You drew another blank :), I don't use laptops, preferring desktops for ease of repair/replacement.

But many other members do employ laptops and they can answer questions about replacing drives.

IMO, it's always "worth it" to have a functioning system and I consider an optical drive a practical necessity of owning/using a system, installing Windows, installing programs, saving files, etc.

Louis

#9 bs10

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Posted 19 September 2011 - 06:25 PM

Just my luck ha ha.. That's okay though. I guess i'll have to look into getting the drive repaired/replaced, or check to see if an external drive would suffice.

Thanks

Edited by bs10, 19 September 2011 - 06:26 PM.


#10 MrBruce1959

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Posted 19 September 2011 - 07:28 PM

Hello BS10 and welcome to Bleeping Computer.

If your drive is experiencing issues with reading disks or burning them, it is either being caused by a dirty laser lens or a weak laser diode.

Sometimes compressed air can not clean the lens efficiently enough for the drive to work properly.

In cases like this,you are better off using cotton swab dipped in isopropyl alcohol 70%, lightly clean the lens in a circular motion and allow it to dry.

Try a disk and see if it is read by the drive.

If this fails to get it working again, it is apparent that your laser is no longer capable of focusing a strong enough beam at the tracks on the disk and the whole drive should be replaced.

The price of having the laser diode replaced in parts and labor will exceed the price of a new drive.

DVD/CD burner/read only drives for laptops can be replaced very easily, there is usually only one screw located on the laptop bottom holding the drive in place.
Once that screw is removed, the drive will slide out of the laptop.

If you prefer, you can use an external USB optical drive, they are basically a laptop DVD burner in a plastic case and a USB cable that plugs into the back of the drive, the drive is powere through the USB interface, so there is no need for a power cable.

Check this web page out, there are some drives on this page I use as replacements for laptop computers.

http://www.iomagic.com/collections/peripherals

Bruce.
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#11 bs10

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 12:26 AM

Thanks for all the info, I really appreciate it..

I'm going to try to clean the lens in the morning. Hopefully that will take care of the problem, but if not, then I'll look at replacing the drive.

I found a couple that I liked with the link you provided. Are there any advantages/disadvantages to an internal or external drive? I'd think an internal run would run better and more efficiently, but that would require me replacing the drive. The procedure sounded simple enough, I just don't want to screw anything up.

If I go the internal route, are there specific sizes or connections that I need to consider

#12 bs10

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 12:49 PM

Bruce

I really appreciate your assistance. I cleaned the lens just as you suggested and my drive is working now! I was able to play an audio CD and it recognized Office as well. What a relief. It's been like 2 years since I've been able to use my drive. I forgot what it was like haha. Thanks again, hopefully I'll be good to go for awhile now!

Bryan

#13 MrBruce1959

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 02:12 PM

Glad to hear the good news and I hope your drive works flawlessly for some time to come.

Just in case the drive ever does die completely, I will answer one of the questions you asked me above.

If it ever comes to a point where you need to replace your optical drive in the future, an internal one is always best, but an external drive will work quite well and it can be used on any computer that has a USB port, including any desktop computer.

An external drive on a laptop will be an extra portable device you'll have to tote around with you when you are on the go, but it will be 100% compatible with your laptop.

An internal replacement drive will have to be one that is recommended by the laptop manufacturer, this way it will fit in the optical bay correctly, the screw holes will line up properly and the electrical connections with match up properly.

If you were to purchase an OEM piece of hardware, the manufacturer often charges steep prices for such, I know that does not sound fair, but not much you can do about it.

Ebay or Newegg is a decent place to find internal optical drive replacements for laptops, just make sure the part numbers match the part numbers on your current drive, or that is is listed as a compatible drive for your laptop brand and model number.

By the way, you are welcome for the help and assistance you have received from me. :thumbup2:


Happy computing!

Bruce.
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#14 bs10

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 08:46 AM

I'll have to take that into consideration if I find myself in a position of needing a new drive. Hopefully it won't come to that and I'll be ready to replace my laptop by then.

Again, thank you for your time and support. You've been a great help!!

#15 bs10

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Posted 22 September 2011 - 10:28 AM

Bruce,

The pain-in-the-butt is back with another issue/question...

So, I tried installing Office this morning. It took awhile, but I eventually got my drive to recognize a disc. I have three different Office versions (2000, '03 and '07). My laptop wouldn't read any at first. It looked like it recognized them, as a CD icon would appear near the mouse cursor. The icon would repeatedly flash, sometimes up to 20 times, but then nothing would happen. I tried reading an Audio CD (to see if the drive was working at all) and it recognized it right away (I could really hear the disc spinning inside) and the pop-up box appeared, providing the different play options. I actually tried a couple different audio CDs, both purchased and burnt CDs, and each worked.

After some failed attempts with the Office discs, I cleaned the lens again like you suggested before. I also used a can of dust remover on the tray as well for good measure. I then tried it again a few more times with the different versions, and after a few more attempts, I finally had some success, although it was with the 2000 version.

I got the first Disc installed so that's a plus. At least I can open my previous Word documents and create new ones. I was just wondering if you had any thoughts as to why it wasn't working all the time. Could it be an intermittent problem, and it just happened to work this time. Or could the lens be weakening, and I got lucky and it just so happened to work with Office 2000 in the tray.

I guess I'm still not the clear. This is really the first time that I needed to use the optical drive to install a program. It'd be nice to be able to rely on it though, so maybe I should still be considering different options if mine is going to work all the time.

I would like thoughts on it and if you have any ideas/suggestions. In the meantime, I'm going to continue working to install the newest version of Office.

Thanks, again..

Bryan




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