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Though CDs as a data storage media are more reliable than floppy disks, they are also prone to errors. Errors reading the CD can be due to problems with CD or the computer CDROM drive. Since a blank CD is cheap, it is recommended that you make multiple copies of  your important data. It is not possible to read data from a badly damaged CD. A CDROM or CDRW drive problem could cause errors in reading CD like not showing any CD in the drive ("Please insert a CD into CDROM drive") , errors copying data from the CD  .  

How to fix a CDR drive problem.

1. Check if the IDE cable connecting the motherboard to the CDROM drive is fixed properly. Also try to connect the CDROM drive using a different cable.


2. Check for viruses, Trojans and Spyware. First check for and  remove all spyware, adware  and  then run a  antivirus program . Third party programs running in the background can also cause an error.


3. There may be a problem with the drivers. Go to device manager, uninstall the CDROM drive and then install it again. If this does not work, try getting updated drivers from the CDROM drive manufacturers website and reinstall them. For older versions of Windows, if the operating system is corrupted, you may get errors.


4. If the CDROM drive tray is not opening

a. Power supply cable to the CDROM drive may be loose or disconnected especially if the computer has been moved recently.

b. The eject button on CDROM drive may be malfunctioning, you still open the drive using the eject option in My Computer

c. A  locking software may be installed, so reboot the machine.


5. The CDROM drive lens may be dusty or dirty. The lens can be cleaned using a q tip moistened with alcohol. Mini q tips are also available. If a brush based CDROM drive cleaning system is used, the hair on the brush should be very soft. If the hairs are hard, they can causes scratches on the the lens. CDs for cleaning may be used, but they are not always effective. For a DVD use a lint free optical cloth.


6. The data may not be properly written onto the CDs. When data is written to a CD ROM it has to be finalized (closed). All CD ROM drives may not be able to read an open CD.  If  the CD is burned at the fastest possible rate, the quality of the CD will be poor and it may not work on all CD drives. The slower the data transfer, the lower the chances of data corruption.


7. If you accidentally used a marker pen to mark the wrong side of a CD, the marking can be removed by isopropyl alcohol and a lint free cloth to remove the mark


8. Toothpastes, polishes and cleaners will fix scratches to some degree, but you have to be careful using them. Cleaners containing bleach can cause damage, while alcohol based cleaners do not cause much damage.


9. Most CD ROM drives available today  have a one year warranty, so if it is still under warranty, you can get it replaced from the supplier.

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