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My CD-R drive doesn't work...


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Puritan's Avatar
Puritan Puritan is offline
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08-Sep-2002, 08:54 PM #1
My CD-R drive doesn't work...
... well, it doesn't work all the time. It's a Mitsumi CR-4802TE. I put a CD in, and about 50% of the time it will recognize it (the light will go on solid yellow), and 50% it will just spin endlessly and never be able to read it (the light goes flashing yellow). And then, even when it does read it, if I want to, say, copy files off, I can get a few files off and then it loses its place and goes into the flashing yellow, endless spin. This is definitely a hardware problem, not a software one. I've tried using those CD lens cleaners, but they haven't helped (possibly in part because the CD drive doesn't even accept the cleaner, but will instead just keep spinning). I've tried opening up the drive and cleaning the lens like that, but that was no help either. Does anyone know what I can do to get my CD drive working? Not having consistent CD access is extremely frustrating (I also had a DVD drive, but that broke as well...)
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Norwalker Norwalker is offline
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08-Sep-2002, 09:26 PM #2
Hi Puritan,

Well, I am not sure how your CD-R and DVD are connected in your system, but here are some things you might try if you haven't already

1) If both on same cable, try removing the (busted) DVD and see if the CD-R is works ok without the DVD
2) Try a different Cable
3 ) try switching the IDE interfaces on the board

Frankly, however, it sounds like the Drive is bad. Less headache, less prozac to just get a replacement, if you can afford one. A mitsumi cd-r/rw ( model CR-480ATE ) w/ Nero 5.5 software is 46.00 at Newegg.com

Hope that is helpful
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Puritan Puritan is offline
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08-Sep-2002, 09:29 PM #3
Thanks for the help, but I know it's not the IDE cabling anywhere (since it does work half the time, and I just installed a new hard drive now and switched all my IDEs around and it's still the same). The drive itself is bad, but I was hoping that someone had a good suggestion on how to fix it instead of buying a new one. $46 isn't that much, but after buying a new hard drive, I should eventually just junk the whole computer and buy a new one, but I can't do that right now... hmm...

Thanks.
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09-Sep-2002, 06:36 AM #4
I would suggest not using a lens cleaner in a burner. It can knock the burning lens out of position and then it will not work for sure.
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09-Sep-2002, 09:47 AM #5
How large is the power supply and how many devices do you have connected to it?
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10-Sep-2002, 10:42 AM #6
I'm not sure what you mean by "how big is it"... I figure you don't mean the actual dimensions of the box but some value that it has, but I don't know what value that is or how to find it. It currently has, I think, six devices attached to it: a new 80 GB hard drive I just bought, the original 6 GB hard drive that came with the computer, an Iomega zip drive, the 50-50 CD-R, the floppy drive, and the built-in DVD drive (which doesn't work at all, which I therefore disconnected from the IDE cables to make room for the new hard drive).

Is this a power problem, do you think? Why would the CD-R still work 50% of the time then? (Do you think the DVD drive could also be a power problem? That thing has been nothing but problems from day one... it worked, then stopped working, I went through tons of bureaucracy with Gateway tech support to get a replacement, which worked for a while, then stopped working again...) The lights flash and the drives spin (the CD-R definitely and I think the DVD did too) even when the discs can't be "locked" and recognized...
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10-Sep-2002, 10:49 AM #7
Yes, I'm looking for info like 250 Watts, etc. Sometimes an insufficient power supply can make things act strange....you may be able to take a look at the back of it and see the Wattage...although my best guess is you'll need to open the case and look at the top of it.....or if you have your computer specs...is it a namebrand or home built?
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10-Sep-2002, 09:24 PM #8
It's a Gateway, bought circa 1997.

It says 100-110/200-240 volts, 50/60 Hz, 200 watts max.

Is 200 watts not enough to power all six devices? (If all of these problems I have can be traced just to power, I will be stunned... why didn't Gateway suggest this when I had problems before?) Can it even power my new hard drive? Could this explain not only why my CD-R is 50-50 but also why my DVD drive is completely dead (same problem as the CD-R I think, just 100% of the time)? If I stripped the computer down to four components -- my 80 GB HD, my 6 GB one, my CD-R, and my DVD -- could the computer support that? Man oh man, if this is the problem, I will be stupefied that something like this could cause so many problems, but also infinitely grateful that someone put me on the right track...
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11-Sep-2002, 09:42 AM #9
2oo watt is the bare minimum. It won't surprise me one bit if that may be causing a lot of your problems. I would suggest going up to at least at 350 watt.
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11-Sep-2002, 09:53 AM #10
Wow, I wasn't expecting to hear only 200 watts

I'd try stripping it down to one hard drive and one cd drive.....(the one that works 50 percent of the time ) and see how it works......
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11-Sep-2002, 11:22 AM #11
Well, I stripped it down to two hard drives, the CD-R, and the floppy, and, while it might be too early to tell, the CD-R seems to not be having any more problems. You guys are miracle workers! (The DVD still seems dead even with fewer devices draining the power, so I disconnected it completely, but the CD-R seems to be running pretty.)

Now a few other questions... is there a chance that I could suffer unrepairable damage if I continue to overstress my power supply? Can my devices (especially my hard drive, which is the most important, since it has my actual files on it) somehow get damaged? For example, my DVD... is it possible that it got damaged due to not having enough love and attention during its formative years and now is broken permanently? Would 200 watts be enough to run two hard drives, a CD-R, and a floppy long-term, do you think? Thanks guys for all your help.
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11-Sep-2002, 12:39 PM #12
I spoke too soon... my CD-R is flaking out on me again, as bad as before, even with the removed drives (I also took out a PCI card that I wasn't using). Unless the second hard drive and CD-R consume more power than a Iomega zip drive and a DVD (my original configuration), I have the same number of devices, at least, as I did in the computer's original configuration.
~Candy~'s Avatar
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11-Sep-2002, 12:50 PM #13
It could still be the power supply......I would bet a new one solves the problem....but first you might try the CDROM in a different computer.......that'll rule that out.......
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26-Sep-2002, 04:13 PM #14
I've stripped my computer to about as low as it'll go to lessen the drain on power, but it still doesn't work... strangely enough, it detects blank CDs with a minimum of fuss and burns them fine with Nero, but it can't detect data CDs (either burned ones or factory-pressed) without a lot of trouble. I had to reinstall my OS a while back and it was insane without a properly working CD drive. Hmm...
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