BTC drives: General Troubleshooting

You bought a BTC drive and you have problems ?

Check out the following first:

Make sure to download and install the latest firmware version. You can find it in this thread:

Remark: firmware updates usually contain bug fixes and contain new media compatibility information that enable you to use more media codes (Manufacturer ID codes). Each media manufacturer has its own unique MID codes, which is a digital signature imprinted into each disc. The firmware of your drive checks this MID code and will adjust certain values inside the burner which allow it to burn that particular media optimally. Because new MID codes come onto the market regularly, new firmware updates are necessary to optimally support these media.

First find out which MID code your media has and compare it with the information in this thread’s media support list.

Note: The MID code can be found by using a utility such as DVDInfo Pro or similar (CD speed - Disc Info also works most of the time).

If you can’t find the MID code of your media in the above thread, then you can check again on this forum’s MEDIA COMPATIBILITY - G00D RESULTS or BAD RESULTS thread to see if other users have tried the media that you’re using.

Whether you’re using Ahead’s Nero or other burning software, make sure to check their websites for the latest updates of the software. It might contain bug fixes and media compatibility fixes.

BTC Europe Support

With Marco’s permission, I shall add a bit more to this thread. My main purpose is that there’s a lot more to consider before blaming the DRW1004IM.


Sometimes different timing issues can generate certain conflicts between 2 ATAPI devices connected to the same IDE cable. Same thing could happen if the other device is a hard disk drive, although this issue is less frequent. This, this makes it quite necessary to try the drive in both configurations to get it as stable as possible.

Note: if it’s a standalone drive connected to the IDE cable, then this doesn’t apply.


This unit is designed to function optimally in UDMA2 (=UDMA33) mode. Upon booting your system, you will see the mode the BIOS initializes the drive. If it says UDMA33, make sure that your WINDOWS Device Manager enables this mode (either tick the “DMA” checkbox, or “DMA if possible”). You may have to reboot.

If you have an older board without UDMA support (i.e. Intel 430FX, 430HX, 430VX, ALi M1543 (non-A, non-B), etc.), then don’t worry. Your BIOS will display “PIO MODE 4”, which isn’t the best mode for DVD playback nor for high-speed recording. Solution: make sure that your WINDOWS Device Manager enables this mode (either tick the “DMA” checkbox, or “DMA if possible”). This will enable an intermediate mode which is usually MWDMA2 (Multi-Word DMA2), which this unit handles just fine (personal testing), and which will enable proper DVD viewing and high-speed burning.

Note: if upon changing the DMA mode, Windows still insists on using PIO mode (DMA checkbox won’t activate), then you either have a faulty southbridge (part of the motherboad chipset which usually controls the IDE ports), or it has simply been blacklisted by Microsoft for not passing their quality tests (i.e. the ALi M1543 southbridge).
Make sure UDMA is enabled in BIOS! Some BIOSes require manual activation of this feature.


I’m specifically referring to the IDE drivers, although lately these come bundled in a single download package from your chipset manufacturer’s website, and updates your AGP, onboard devices, etc. drivers, too.


I’ve included this AFTER the DRIVERS section because it’s a bit more dangerous. You’ll have to get the latest BIOS from your motherboard manufacturer’s site. Browse their page for BIOS-flashing instructions. Do this at your own risk. If you need help flashing your motherboard, you can always resort to



If you’ve been constantly upgrading your system (CPU, mainboard, HDDs, RAM, VGA, etc.) within the SAME box, then your PSU may be somewhat overstressed. You might be using a 180W PSU on a P3/P4/XP system, which usually requires a healthy 300W PSU (and above!!). CD/DVD burning requires quite a bit more power than simple CD/DVD reading, so you should consider this option, too.


Forum MOD.

Installing many different programs that are related to burning CDs/DVDs might cause problems as well.

Some programs have resident drivers or burning engines active in the background when you don’t notice it. These may clash with other programs and cause unexpected problems.

So try the following (if applicable):

  1. Remove all drivers or programs from your PC that are related to burning CD/DVDS;

(such as the Elby driver from CloneCD/DVD !)

  1. With Nero as (maybe) with some other programs, only using the REMOVE PROGRAMS option in Control Panel will not always do the trick; it might be necessary to go over to the PROGRAM FILES directory and fully remove the AHEAD directory by hand (or other directory that is related to your other burning software)

  2. After doing all the above, reinstall only the Nero software

  3. Check the Ahead Software website for updates of your Nero version and install them

Some problems may be caused by wrong IDE cables or settings.

Please refer to the below URL for reference: