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CD/DVD Drive Will Not Read Disk


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#1 nonnox15

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Posted 28 February 2016 - 08:24 AM

Dell Inspiron 1545 Notebook Laptop

64 Bit Windows Vista

Opitical CD/DVD Drive

 

I have a CD Disk on which I copied data from my computer for back up.

This data came from another Disk with Data from my old Desk top computer.

I deleted some data and put newer data on my HDD and then copied it onto the CD.

I think, I have accessed the data from this CD after I had copied it onto the CD.

The other day I tried to access this CD and my laptop would not access the CD.

When I brought up the Properties of the CD it indicated 0% used and 0% free.

I thought maybe the Registry got corrupted.

However, when I put the CD in my wife's Desk Top, that computer accessed it fine.

My Laptop runs Vista 64 bit and my wife's desk to has Vista 32 bit.

My laptop computer will access and read other CD's, including those also recorded by my laptop in approximately the same time period as the Data CD I am trying to access.

I tried several times.  Every time I try, the Laptop will open the Drive tray and ask for a CD.

This really has me confused.

Anyone have any ideas?



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#2 Platypus

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Posted 28 February 2016 - 09:08 AM

Is the CD you have the problem with a CD-RW (i.e. re-writable) by any chance?


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#3 Niweg

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Posted 28 February 2016 - 02:22 PM

 Have you tried cleaning the CD/DVD drive?  They need that periodically.

 

 Good luck.


Make regular full system backups or you'll be sorry sooner or later.


#4 nonnox15

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Posted 28 February 2016 - 03:06 PM

Platypus: Yes, it is a CD-RW.

So, is that the problem?

Why will the Disk read on one computer but not on the one on which it was recorded.

 

Niweg: I have not cleaned it.  How do you clean the CD/DVD Drive?



#5 Platypus

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Posted 28 February 2016 - 07:16 PM

Apart from not being very reliable, so not so good for backup purposes, CD-RWs are the hardest to read, and make the highest demands of the drive's laser. If the laser is getting weak, or if the lens is dirty, the first sign can be that it reads stamped or non-rewritable burned discs OK, but struggles with or can't read RW discs. They only have around 35-40% reflectivity, so need a good beam.

 

The laser lens is accessible when the CD tray is open. The little domed lens can be cleaned gently with a soft brush if it is just dusty, or for more contamination, a cotton tip moistened with a cleaning solution such as isopropyl alcohol, although often just methylated spirits is used as a substitute. At a pinch you can possibly get away with glass cleaner, but because they often contain chemicals like ammonia, they can adversely affect a plastic lens. If you had access to a cleaning solution for eyeglasses or camera lenses, that should also be fine. There are lens cleaning discs, but they are usually used for inaccessible drives as used in desktop systems, and they're limited in how much contamination they can clean away.

 

Some lasers are single lens, some have two. A laser assembly, with dual laser lenses, is circled in the image below:

 

optical-lens.jpg

 

If it still doesn't read the disc after lens cleaning, it could be the laser getting weak. Probably the best way to be sure is to see if you can try another CD-RW disc (must be CD not DVD as DVD uses a second laser chip). If the drive has trouble with another RW disc too, then it would most likely be a weak laser.


Edited by Platypus, 28 February 2016 - 07:31 PM.

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#6 nonnox15

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Posted 28 February 2016 - 09:25 PM

Cleaned the laser and it read the disk.

Thanks for the info.

Someone gave me 100 or so CD-RWs.

Anyway, it read the disk.

Question:  IF it was a problem with a weak laser, what is the corrective solution?

Do you have to replace the whole drive or can you just replace the laser?



#7 Platypus

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Posted 28 February 2016 - 09:36 PM

Good result. If you take advantage of having access to so many CD-RWs, I'd suggest use them for short term purposes - don't rely on the data still being good years into the future.

 

If the laser in a drive can be identified and the exact replacement is available, someone with technical ability can replace it. But generally speaking, laser failure means replace the drive.


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#8 nonnox15

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Posted 28 February 2016 - 09:53 PM

Thank you.

It is a Dell so getting a replacement shouldn't be difficult to get one from them.

Just hope I don't have to.

Thanks again.

Greatly appreciate the help.



#9 Platypus

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Posted 29 February 2016 - 06:58 AM

You're welcome! Glad it worked out for you.

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