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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    Hello All - I have an interesting problem with a client's PC that has exhausted my computer intellect.

    My client is running a homegrown Windows XP (w/SP3, 1GB memory, 320GB drive) PC that is roughly 7 years old. It has worked flawlessly until recently.
    There are two identical NEC ND-3550A CD/DVD+/--RW drives installed. Previously viewed CD's and DVDs on this computer are now unable to be read, i.e.
    Explorer lists both drives but no files are present (which they definitely are).

    My immediate thought was a virus causing the problem so I booted in Safe Mode and ran the latest MalwareBytes and EMSI a-squared scanners and no viruses/spyware/rootkits were detected.

    I viewed the Control Panel Hardware Device-Manager and both drives are cleanly recognized. I updated to NECs latest firmware (FW 1.07), rebooted the PC,Windows (re)recognizes the hardware but the same condition exists.

    I performed some searches and implemented a few suggestions including Microsoft's Automated Troubleshooting Services but the problem persists.
    What is odd about the situation is if you place a music only CD in either drive, Explorer successfully lists the file content.

    Someone mentioned that iTunes might be the offender in this case???

    Any insights would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Don
    Don McCoy

  2. #2
    New Lounger
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    This seems a little obvious so I'll apologize beforehand....but have you configured the various auto-play options??
    (R/Click on the drive and open the Auto-play tab)

    Crat

  3. #3
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    If the 2 drives had been using for 7 years, it's time to change them including the system as well. I change my DVDRW every 12 to 18 months - I have 4 of them on the same system & I used them very regularly. Sometimes I have this problem - one particular drive had been burning Dvds for more than 6 months continuously & then I try to burn a cd in it - it refused to burn. It do not even recognise the blank disc
    Intel CoreI7 P55/ 8Gb 1600 RAM DDR3/ NV GTS 570 1Gb PCIe/ HDD X 3 = 6TB/SSD x 1 128GB/ BDRW X 2/DVDRW x 2/ Corsiar 850W PSU & running on Win10 Pro 64bit

  4. #4
    New Lounger
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    Thanks Crat and Tony for the responses. Although I am basically just trying to view the files, regardless of the AutoPlay functionality, on the CD or DVD, I will definitely checkout
    the AutoPlay settings just to see if maybe a tweak here will invoke a good read.

    As for the age, I may try some Dust Off and a CD-DVD cleaner first before going down the path of replacing the drive. Interesting your comment about CD/DVD drive age...I have
    had great success in using CD-DVD drives > 5 years of age without issues. I will keep the replacement approach in mind.

    I will post an update if/when a solution is found.

    Thanks again.
    Don McCoy

  5. #5
    Star Lounger
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Real View Post
    Hello All - I have an interesting problem with a client's PC that has exhausted my computer intellect.

    My client is running a homegrown Windows XP (w/SP3, 1GB memory, 320GB drive) PC that is roughly 7 years old. It has worked flawlessly until recently.
    There are two identical NEC ND-3550A CD/DVD+/--RW drives installed. Previously viewed CD's and DVDs on this computer are now unable to be read, i.e.
    Explorer lists both drives but no files are present (which they definitely are).

    My immediate thought was a virus causing the problem so I booted in Safe Mode and ran the latest MalwareBytes and EMSI a-squared scanners and no viruses/spyware/rootkits were detected.

    I viewed the Control Panel Hardware Device-Manager and both drives are cleanly recognized. I updated to NECs latest firmware (FW 1.07), rebooted the PC,Windows (re)recognizes the hardware but the same condition exists.

    I performed some searches and implemented a few suggestions including Microsoft's Automated Troubleshooting Services but the problem persists.
    What is odd about the situation is if you place a music only CD in either drive, Explorer successfully lists the file content.

    Someone mentioned that iTunes might be the offender in this case???

    Any insights would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Don
    I was having the same problem with my machine and eventually learned that a gadget that I had installed was causing the problem. It was a gadget that was for opening and closing the cd/dvd tray. Perhaps there is a gadget installed on the machine in question?

  6. #6
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    A good troubleshooting guide
    Yes, these pesky issues are usualy software related.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

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  7. #7
    New Lounger
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    What virus protection is on the PC? I recently ran into the same issue with a CD/DVD drive. It would play music CD, and run DVD, but it wouldn’t launch any program disks. When it first occurred I did the same as you and check for a virus, went through troubleshooting, check settings, updated drivers, you name it, I did it. Nothing seemed to work. The drive was working fine a couple of weeks before. What I realized was the drive issue coincided with a recent Symantec Endpoint Protection install. When I disabled the virus protection the drive worked as it should. Apparently the updated virus protection recognizes any program disk as a possible threat and disables all features including exploring. Hope this helps!!

  8. #8
    New Lounger
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    Based on the age of the computer I would guess that both drives are IDE. Are both drives on the same cable, one as master and the other as slave? If so, disconnect the slave drive and see if the master functions properly. Then reverse the procedure, i.e., diconnect the master and see if the slave functions properly. Make sure you reset the jumpers if necessary or use cable select. Having two CD/DVD+/--RW drives on the same IDE cable can cause problems. Having one CD/DVD+/--RW drive and one CD/DVD-ROM on one cable is usually okay.

  9. #9
    3 Star Lounger
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    The hint on this problem is in the subject title:
    It can read music CD but not data CD.

    This specific rejection is most likely a software issue.
    It has nothing to do with hardware, as hardware is 'equal opportunity to all'.
    Try disable all anti-virus programs, and even firewall programs (some call it that but they include anti-virus as a suite, or with some partial anti-virus functions).

    Or, think whether you have recently installed some programs, especially CD/DVD drive related programs (not necessary burning software. Even media player type would do). They may have conflicts. It is well known that many CD/DVD software cannot co-exist with each other. This is especially true for burning software. If in doubt, uninstall them, one by one.

    Cleaning the read head may help but it should not matter, as the drive can read music CD yet rejects data CD. But no hurt to try. After many years of use, a cleanup is needed anyway.

    The only hardware side problem is the weakened but not dead red laser in the CD/DVD drive. (It is rare but read on.)

    The laser maybe weaken enough that it can read music CD but not data CD (which has smaller burn spots).
    Another way is to try a commercial CD (not CDR burned by you or somebody). Commercial CD quality is much better. For example, if the drive can read the XP (or Win 2000) installation CD, then this is the problem. Time for a new drive.

    At times (too much burning) weakens the laser quite a bit but it is still 'alive'. This is rare, though. Laser dies fast at the end age. Laser deterioration is a known problem but it is slow, and it should last a normal life. Additionally, electronic gain circuit continues to compensate the laser aging process. If you are unlucky, the laser may be teetering at the edge of failure, and the electronic compensation circuit is right there at the limit.

  10. #10
    Star Lounger
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    What software are you using to read the CDs? I had a similar problem and found that Norton had a conflict with the CD drive reader software. Once I removed the reader software and installed a more robust (paid) version, the problem went away.

  11. #11
    New Lounger
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    Just a suggestion......

    Why not use the "system restore" function to roll back the computer to a date you know the drives were working properly.......

    If they work after restoring to a previous date then you'll know that the problem is not within the drives themselves......

  12. #12
    Lounge VIP bobprimak's Avatar
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    There is a known issue with Windows XP suddenly making a CD drive read-only or not recognized at all for data files. The culprit is often a Registry error introduced by any of a number of software packages.

    Try the advice here , or download the .REG File directly here (this will start the download immediately!), or the Microsoft "Fix It" solution here . Once you have the .REG File, merge it into the Windows XP Registry by double-clicking on the file, or if you have altered this behavior (as you should do), right-click on the file and choose "Merge" from the menu.

    I chose one reference (the first one) which specifically addresses the issue on a NEC laptop, as this is what you say you are running.

    I have had this exact problem on my laptop four times in the past year. I also had situations where certain Windows Services related to burning to the drive had been switched to Manual or Disabled. I blame Microsoft and my security vendors for their updates, but others report there are many other possible origins for these errors. In each case, either the Registry has been altered, or else the Windows Services have been switched off.
    -- Bob Primak --

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