Computer doesn't detect CD drive

By Blackjack
Aug 9, 2010
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  1. Hey all,

    When booting my computer, i seem to get stuck at "Detecting IDE Drives". It completes the cycle every once in a while, maybe once every 3-5 restarts. As well, my computer CANNOT boot off of my CD drive, only my disk drive. When I do boot from my HDD, my computer doesn't detect my CD Drive. Additionally, the drive doesn't even open nor does it have a light - although on occassion, it will work fine; it will open and light up as usual.

    Can anybody explain how to fix this in lamens terms?

    Thanks in advance!
  2. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 6,964   +355

    There are a few things you can try as in this guide:

    However, because of the multiple problems you describe, in the end I think you will have to replace the drive with a new one.
  3. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    It might also be a failing power supply.
  4. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    If the optical drive was used a great deal before, or if it is a year or more old, replace it... $20 to $25 at and others... for LG, Pioneer, LiteOn, Samsung... not worth the time trying to diagnose.
  5. ruready2

    ruready2 TS Enthusiast Posts: 202

    The fact that it sometimes works and sometimes doesn't indicate to me the issue could be caused by faulty cables. Unplug each and re-plug. May not be the cause but, worth a try.
  6. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    Faulty only some of the time... on cables?

    From history, it is more likely the commonly reported worn out optical drive.

    Please test each way, so we get a handle on this... We See huge numbers of faulty optical drives if over a year old, and faulty cable only when brand new or when more than five years old.
  7. ruready2

    ruready2 TS Enthusiast Posts: 202

    Yes faulty only some of the time. I have seen situations where the fans will move the cables back and forth when engaged eventually causing a short in the cable. Shorts are well known to make contact at times and to not make contact at other times. This very well may not be the issue for the OP. However, in my experience it is more likely the cable since it sometimes recognizes the drive and sometimes doesn't.
  8. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    Can't wait for the real solution
  9. ruready2

    ruready2 TS Enthusiast Posts: 202

    I am not saying this is without a doubt the cause. I am simply saying what I have seen with my own two eyes, To further expand, I have seen situations where unplugging the IDE or SATA cable then reinserting them has resolved this issue as well. Imagine If you work with computers long enough you will learn 1) expect the unexpected; 2) repairs are not always typical. II too hope the OP is able to resolve this issue.. Not to prove me right or wrong but, for the OP's benefit. .:)
  10. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    Not all of us have workshops full of kit we can use to diagnose faults by swapping bits around - work with what you have to hand and take the sensible advice to stop wasting time on it and get yourself a new one.
  11. ruready2

    ruready2 TS Enthusiast Posts: 202

    Unplugging then replugging or wiggling the cables doesn't require a workshop. And the sensible approach is to determine and/or eliminate a $5 cable prior to spending $30. Not everyone has $30 to run out and buy a new drive only to find out it's not even the cause. Perhaps it is the drive but, it's worth 15 minutes of time to check the cables just to be sure.
  12. princealway

    princealway TS Rookie

    I would like to suggest that shutdown the computer .Take the cd drive out,put it back in,go to bios auto detect the drive it should show up,restart. I think this will work .
  13. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +183

    It's somehow a stretch to believe a bad cable can cause an intermittent problem???

    Though, once again, i suppose an approach of simply replacing everything more than a year old is a pretty simple "sledgehammer" approach to troubleshooting for a repair shop owner like yourself... (you mean you really don't think someone should at least bother to check cables before spending $$ to replace an optical drive? :confused: )

    /* edit */
    Now that's another "creative" raybay statistic LOL :haha:
  14. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    I'll lay good money that a replacement drive will sort it!
    And you can get replacements really cheap from people like Ebuyer
  15. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    I am betting on the replacement hard drive, as well.

    Wire or socket problems would have shown up differently and more obviously.
  16. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    On the subject of intermittent problems, these are usually caused by thermal changes in the components in the box, and ribbon cables are often pulled about and twisted around to make nice 'n tidy innards. This puts unnecessary stress on components such as the cables themselves and the connections at each end.
    I have repaired machines with a straightforward cable replacement - on the last one the failed one also failed in another machine just to check and whatever it was that was kaput was completely invisible to the human eye.
    And SATA cables are worse than ribbon cables in my book - never use them unless they have the securing clips.

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