CD-RW troubles

By bobby
Dec 25, 2002
Topic Status:
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  1. Hi, I am new to these forums. Recently, my CD-RW has begun to give me problems. I am forced to unplug the wire from within my computer because it freezes my computer for about 15 sec every minute. I bought this computer about 2 years ago from Gateway and it has worked fine for about a year and a half. It recently just stopped working and freezing my computer, I did not damage to it. When it is plugged in, my CD-RW flashes at random times like it's trying to read something when nothing is in the bay. I called Gateway and they sent me a brand new one. It worked the first time i plugged it in and I succesfully burned a CD. Then, it stopped working and continued to do like before.

    Any comments or suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.


    Also: I have checked the connections several times. And, my D: drive does not appear in My Computer.
  2. iss

    iss TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,896

    What operating system are you using? and is the CDRW on the secondary IDE channel or is it connected on the primary one with the hard drive? if it is on the secondary alone then the jumper should be set to master. if it is on the secondary with a CD rom or DVD drive then it should be set as slave.
  3. bobby

    bobby Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    I am using Windows XP Professional. How do I determine the IDE channels? Btw, I do not have any other CD or DVD drives.
  4. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 3,199

    What is the exact manufacturer and model # of your CD-RW? You probably could flash the firmware.

    Also, inform Gateway of this problem, and see if they will provide you with an equally rated CD-RW, of a different brand.
  5. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 Newcomer, in training Posts: 6,504

    corrupted firmware could be your issue, however you say that you have had the drive replaced and little has changed.

    you could have a faulty IDE cable or a faulty IDE controller. Its very likely the cable. Try replacing that, and using a different power lead from the PSU.

    the version of the firmware you are using could be giving you problems with your IDE controller, because there is a bug in that version of the firmware in connection with your motherboard's chipset. you could therefore try upgrading the firmware as Veh suggests, but I would consider this as a completely last resort, when you have tried all else. hardware manufacturers can tell if you have changed the firmware even if it is to the same version, and this will likely void your warranty.
  6. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 3,199

    Open up your case, and look at the system board. Along the right side, or the side closest to the front of your case, there should be a long connector, with a flat, wide cable leading out from it. There should be two. One is your primary IDE, and one is your secondary IDE. If there is one cable coming out of only one of these connectors, then both your devices are on the same IDE channel. If both IDE connectors have a cable leading out from them, then they're on seperate IDE channels.

    Remove your CD-RW. The norm with PC manufacturers is to set all their drives to "Cable Select". There should be a jumper next to your IDE connector with selections like MA, SL, and CS. These are either on the plastic back, or the PCB on the bottom of the CD-RW. What's it set to?
  7. bobby

    bobby Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    I set it to Master and it seems to be working fine now. Btw,I found out they share the same IDE channel. Thanks to all who helped :) You guys responded very fast
  8. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 3,199

    Do you have a spare IDE cable? If so unplug your current IDE cable from the CD-RW and replace it with that one, then plug it into the secondary IDE port on your system board. You most likely will discover a performance increase, since now they're running off seperate channels, not sharing one.

    If you don't have a spare IDE cable, you can pick one up from your local computer shop for like 3 bucks.
  9. iss

    iss TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,896

    I had a feeling that there was only one IDE cable I know gateway used to do that. definitely follow Veh's advice and buy another IDE cable and set the CDRW on the secondary channel as master. having the CDRW and the harddrive on the same IDE channel degrads the performance of your harddrive.
  10. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 Newcomer, in training Posts: 6,504

    And the techspot team score again! Its an Xmas miracle!

    ;)
  11. bobby

    bobby Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Err, sorry to bother you again but the problem has came back. It worked for like an hour and now im noticing the same thing happening before :(
     
  12. iss

    iss TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,896

    What is happening is you are having a conflict. with both the Hard Drive and the CD rom on the primary IDE channel. the only real fix is to get another IDE cable and put the CD rom on the secondary IDE channel as master. in the meantime if you have both a hard drive and a Cdrom on the primary channel make sure the hard drive is set to master and the Cd rom to slave.
  13. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 3,199

    To be sure - I would buy two IDE cables and replace them both. This would eliminate the chance of it being a cable problem.
  14. bobby

    bobby Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Well, it turns out I have two IDE cables, sorry my faul :/ I have a Phillips PCRW804K/17 - CDRW800Series - Internal CD Rewriter CD-R/RW 8x4x32x. I have checked and there is no updated firmare. I can get my cdrw to work for a short amount of time by setting it to CS then back to master, but this only works for a short amount of time. Any ideas? this has become very frusturating
  15. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 3,199

    Your poor CD-RW is suffering from an identity crisis. You may need to take it to counseling. If you can't afford counseling, it can be very expensive, then talk to it. Soothe it. Tell it it's a great CD-RW. Tell it that it's a fast CD-RW. Do whatever you can...but for Pete's sake, don't scare the poor thing! :(
  16. bobby

    bobby Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    so that's a no? :(
  17. iss

    iss TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,896

    ok so you have the CDRW on its own cable set as master. what is the hard drive set as on its cable CS or Master?
  18. bobby

    bobby Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Actually, I couldnt find those options. It was set to CS but it had only DS , CS , and PK. I wasn't sure what it should of been set to so i didnt touch it.
     
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