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ZIP DISK access problem

By Tedster
Jul 1, 2005
Topic Status:
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  1. I noticed sometimes my Zip drive won't read zip disks created by my second computer or older disks that were created.....

    anyone know what might cause this?
     
  2. patio

    patio TS Maniac Posts: 700

    Read/write head mis-alignment. How old is the unit ? ?

    patio. :cool:
     
  3. IronDuke

    IronDuke TS Rookie Posts: 1,267

    Zip 250 can't be read by Zip 100. I guess you are aware of that and this is not the problem. I go with Patio's mis-alignment.
     
  4. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    Both drives are Zip 100s. One was purchased new about 4 years ago. The other was bought as salvage from a university. Both drives have worked for a while.
     
  5. IronDuke

    IronDuke TS Rookie Posts: 1,267

    Are the discs fairly new? I don't use mine a great deal. The external Zip Plus is 7 years old and the internal is secondhand. they have both proved trouble free with the little use they get. If you used a new disc between the two there would be a better chance of working. If a new disc does not work then Patio hit the nail on the head I'd say.
     
  6. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    Hard to say! I bummed some discs from my government office as they're getting rid of zip drives and moving to flash drives.....
    Some of the discs I bought new.

    I noticed that if I reboot the computer, the problem tends to go away.... I wonder if it is driver related.
     
  7. IronDuke

    IronDuke TS Rookie Posts: 1,267

    Its worth trying the drivers. I often get a problem with them not ejecting. It says they're in use after any action has been stopped for a while, obviously this can go on for a time if you're cpoying large amounts. This generally requires log off and back on. They have a utility program (8.4MB), forget the name (something like Active Disc) I think this seemed to have some effect at one time, but I don't have it running on any machines now.
     
  8. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    you may be right about the drivers. I notice when I log off, there is a program called "image" that windows tries to close. I checked on this driver and it is with the Zip drive. I find auto-eject really annoying as I seldom turn off my computer and I like to keep my disc in the computer.
     
  9. IronDuke

    IronDuke TS Rookie Posts: 1,267

    Tedster I don't follow the eject point. Are you saying it is ejecting with out you telling it to? If so when?
     
  10. Liquidlen

    Liquidlen TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,646

    Do a search at Microsoft for Zip errors, I am sure I read some issue a couple of years back that reminds me of your problem .Sorry I don't have time right now.
    Are there any events logged when you have a failed read?
     
  11. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    nah, I don't get any errors. I just says something like "Insert a disk" when there is already a disc in the drive.
    I'll check micro-crap for driver errors
     
     
  12. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    It ejects a disc whenever I log off the computer, even though I don't it to.
     
  13. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    I've come across that problem also, but not as frequent. Usually when they won't eject, I just hit the eject button a few times. The problem I have is the opposite - it ejects when I log off and it won't read some discs.
     
  14. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    I found a few possibilities.....

    1. This behavior occurs because removable media can be reported as malfunctioning if a cartridge is not present in the removable media device.

    When the disk controller BIOS queries a removable media device, it stores the device status information in memory. At startup, Windows NT sends a query to determine the status of devices connected to the disk controller. Depending on the firmware installed, the BIOS revision, or the characteristics of the disk controller, removable media can be reported as malfunctioning if a cartridge is not present in the removable media device.


    2. This problem occurs when the PATH statement in the Autoexec.bat file, Windows NT System Environment Variables, or User Environment Variables for <user name> refers to a floppy disk drive or CD-ROM drive.

    If the Autoexec.bat file refers to a floppy disk or CD-ROM drive, Windows NT 4.0 does not display the error when you log on, but when you run applications.

    3. When you use an Iomega Zip IDE Insider drive to re-partition and reformat a Zip cartridge using LBA mode, the cartridge will be unreadable from other SCSI, Parallel, IDE Zip drives (operating in non-LBA mode), or ATAPI Zip drives.

    None of these seem to be it, although the closest reason may be the first one even though I'm running on XP Pro.
     
  15. Liquidlen

    Liquidlen TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,646

    Under computer management check the settings for "Removeable Media"
    Also might try changing DMA settiings for the drive!
    Check Windows auto start settings on Drive!
    I have also had luck by forcing Windows to re-install the drivers for a drive by uninstalling it and reboot!
    Just trying to give you some ideas.
    Let us know if anything works.

    I stopped using Zips a couple of years back for precisely what is happening to you. I know that that doesn't really help but you may want to consider a USB drive or alternative!
     
  16. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    I have a USB drive, but I use Zip drives mostly for building or repairing computers.

    I have found flash drives to be unreliable.

    I'll check. Thanks
     
  17. Liquidlen

    Liquidlen TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,646

    Do you mind breifly explaining how you use the Zip for building and repair?
     
  18. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    I keep a few programs that I always install on computers I am building or repairing on zip disks. My father has a zip drive. I have two computers at home with zip drives, and I have one at work with a zip drive. I tried flash drives for awhile but they are too unreliable and I have lost info stored on them.
     
  19. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    I checked but my zip drive is not listed as removable media, it's listed as a hard drive.
     
  20. IronDuke

    IronDuke TS Rookie Posts: 1,267

    If you go a long way down.
    Computer Management | Removable Storage | Physical Locations | Iomega Zip 100 SCSI Disk Device.
     
  21. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    found it, but I didn't see anything to change LBA settings. I should mention my zip is an ATAPI.
     
  22. Liquidlen

    Liquidlen TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,646

    I used to do the same thing , but I found that using ISO level 1 recorded CDRW much easier and more reliable since most any rom can read it whether software is loaded or not .
    I am looking through some old notes and I am sure there can be a delay setting in windows registry or maybe Bios to give windows time to recognize Zip media presence ,I am sorry I cannot remember . However you may find it in the meantime.
    Look carefully as Duke directed ,the settings in removeable 'media' can force Windows to look carefully at installed disks.If your Zip is not there it may infer drivers are not installed correctly.
     
  23. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    I've considered CD roms, but they're too slow to burn and a lot of the software I use gets updated frequently so I find zip drives more convienient.

    I did find some setting that forces the Zip drive to come out of memory by a specific time. The default is 5 minutes which I thought was rather long. I dropped it to 1 minute.
     
  24. patio

    patio TS Maniac Posts: 700

    Post the autoexec.bat...there could be an invalid argument in there as well...
    Did re-loading the drivers make any change ? ?

    Another option...

    patio. :cool:
     
  25. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 10,074   +13

    I'm coming to the conclusion that it is driver related. I changed the zip disk memory time from 5 minutes to 1. If I reboot the computer, I don't get any read errors at all.
     
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