Q: My DVD RW drive(E) doesn't recognize or read any disc inserted.

My DVD RW drive(E) doesn't recognize or read any disc inserted. I have an HP desktop with Windows Vista home premium. I used to be able to play CDs & DVDs as well as burn discs on it. Now it won't read anything not even program discs. this happened a while back & I never figured out the problem so I just gave up. Now I need to use a program disc to use a wireless router & I can't because my drive won't read the disc. I have already checked the device manager & it says that all the drivers are up to date & working properly.




Stage 1 : Please do all the below even if you have done some before as it is often the total
process which solves the issue.

Try this - Control Panel - Device Manager - CD/DVD - double click the device - Driver's Tab -
click Update Drivers (this will likely do nothing) - then RIGHT CLICK the drive - UNINSTALL -
REBOOT this will refresh the default driver stack. Even if drive is not shown continue

Then work your way through these - remember the drive could be bad, could have a loose
cable or slight corrosion on the contacts (usually for a laptop) and other issues.

Your CD drive or DVD drive is missing or is not recognized by Windows or other programs - a Mr Fixit

Manually try this fix if the 314060 Fixit did not work

Your CD drive or DVD drive is missing or is not recognized by Windows or other programs -
a Mr Fixit

The CD drive or the DVD drive does not work as expected on a computer that you upgraded
to Windows Vista

When you insert a CD or a DVD, Windows Vista may not recognize the disc

Your CD or DVD drive cannot read or write media - A Mr Fixit

CD/DVD drive does not appear in Windows Vista, or you receive this error during Windows
Vista setup after booting from the DVD (AHCI)

CD-R drive or CD-RW drive is not recognized as a recordable device

Hardware devices not detected or not working - A Mr Fixit

Another possibility is that the cables are loose. Remove ALL power, then check cables in both
ends. Remove and replace, do not just snug. For laptops you can often clean the power and
data contacts with a pencil eraser.

Some DVD drives do not use the Windows default drivers so check with the System maker and
device maker to see if there is firmware or drivers for your drive if needed.


Stage 2 : You could have drive issues as the CD/DVD is actually 4 drives in 1 case ( CD & DVD
burn and CD and DVD read). So it is not unusual for 1 or 2 parts to not function while the others
do so properly.

Did you complete the troubleshooter for the drive that still does not work? There are some
registry entries that the troubleshooter does not fix and those "might" be the cause.

Check with your System Maker and Device maker for both possible firmware updates and
the correct Registry entries for your drive.

These are the keys I think are the ones in question - for the CD/DVD drive sub-keys of course
as there will other sub-keys in these keys. Be sure to ask for specific keys involved as well as
the settings.


HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Hardware Profiles\0001\System\CurrentControlSet\Enum\IDE



You probably can find more info here and maybe even the exact registry settings for your CD/DVD
drive from someone with the same model.

Forums - a lot of real expert help

CD/DVD units

Use DevManView to locate CD/DVD in registry (be careful and make a Restore Point before
changing anything) - find the device in DevManView and then Right Click on it Open in RegEdit.

DevManView - Free - an alternative to the standard Device Manager of Windows, which displays all
devices and their properties in flat table, instead of tree viewer

Hope this helps.

Rob Brown - Microsoft MVP - Windows and Devices for IT 2010 - current
Windows Insider MVP 2016 - current

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Views: 28,451 Last updated: March 14, 2018 Applies to: