Is my dvd burner kaput?

  QinesiQ 23:48 02 Jan 08


Hi & Nappy New Year!

My dvd burner will not recognise its usual (preferred) blank media (error = insert blank dvd even though one is present and the pop-up menu that asks what you want to do with the blank media does not appear). When a blank dvd is inserted the
light comes on and disk spins light goes off for a bit and then light will come back on and disk spins again. It also has a lot of problems reading/recognising pre-recorded music CD and movie discs. The movie plays/stutters frame by frame then freezes. I don’t have a data disk on hand to try so I do not know if it will have problems with this also.

I tried a firmware upgrade and I tried deleting/reinstalling the drive and I still have the same problems. I can’t find a read/write diagnostic software and there are no problems indicated in device manager.

Is it the laser? Is it out of alignment?

  DieSse 01:15 03 Jan 08

Is it the laser?

Maybe - it may be dirty, or it may be failing.

Is it out of alignment?

Maybe (but unlikely)- but even if it is there is nothing you can do about it.

If you try cleaning it, and that doesn't work - then a new drive is called for. Fortunately they're not too expensive theses days.

Is it under warranty - or at least reasonably new?

  €dstowe 06:44 03 Jan 08

Considering you can buy a DVD writer for less than £20, it isn't worth the hassle of repairing/checking/updating firmware.

  QinesiQ 23:51 03 Jan 08

for confirming. I feel better replacing it knowing that it was nothing silly or that I've overlooked.

Thanks again for responding

  Stuartli 00:34 04 Jan 08

The most likely reason is that the DVD or CD laser has gone kaput.

The need to use a laser cleaner is very rare as optical drives are very well sealed and are usually only open for the short time the tray is used to insert or remove a disk.

Firmware updates are also rarely needed - it's usually to do with creating the ability to handle faster write speeds.

Rewriters have a very much shorter life span than basic CD or DVD-ROM drives - that's why it's best to use rewriters purely for burning and a DVD-ROM drive for playing audio CDs, installing software etc.

Re Device Manager. It will indicate a drive is OK, in my experience, even if it is not working ...:-)

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