Copy protection or dead CDRom?

Hey I’m a bit of a newb to the whole world of copy protection, so sorry if this is really basic.

About a month ago my cd burner/dvd reader (LG GCC-4520B) started having a few problems burning cds and now pretty much won’t burn over 4x speed.

I’m not sure if it was at the same time but alot of program and game cds stopped working, but all my normal burnt cds work fine. (Out of backed up burnt games I’ve only tried Jedi Academy, which wouldnt read) What happens is the cd light flashes for awhile, the disk spins, but then the computer gives up and won’t recognise a cd as being inserted.

I thought it could have been Nero 6 ultra, which had installed a few days prior (and used to burn Jedi Acamedy and then test- which worked at the time) because my mates computer did the same thing until I closed all his CD burning software.

I’ve tried running with next to nothing though (ctrl alt deleted every program I could, and used msconfig to reduce all the startup programs as much as possible) but everytime its the same. I’m not sure if its an OS based problem, the cds try to read before XP Pro starts up and still jerk around for about a minute delaying the boot up, I’m not sure if copy protection would even work there so it could be a dead cd rom. I noticed a around the same time I created a link to Asus motherboard driver downloads, and I’ve picked up on the net that nforce 2 chipsets (which I don’t have) and other motherboard upgrades can possibly create cd troubles. I’ve rolled back all the drivers that had the option.

Don’t know if it could possibly be related to this… but I also installed 3DS Max 6 (which I’ve uninstalled) which had C-Dilla copy protection that might have caused problems I think.

… Please let someone out there just be able to say "oh just go start->run->fixme.exe… cause I can’t risking wiping the comp to see if its a software error because if its a hardware error I won’t be able to reinstall everything.

I just tried the cds from a dos boot disk, and they still don’t read… so either the copy protection is still having problems with my drive or the drive is broken. :frowning:

Have you no access to try some of these cd’s what cant read off another cd-rom drive, a friends PC, anything? That would resolve half your questions immediately.

Oh sorry I thought I had said, the cds work on a friends and on my laptop.

I’m beginning to think the drive is dying, I can’t back anything up because nero keeps giving fixation & write errors.

After reading into a few copy protection threads I’m starting to wonder if my reader has lost its ability to read sub channels… I’m not sure if that would create this problem. (I am a noob remember :iagree:)

Is there anyway to test it?

Well, it looks like either your burner is dying, or you are using crappy CD-Rs.
Copy protections often install drivers without your knowledge, but i’ve never seen them preventing you from burning CDs.

yeah but its also not reading any copy pretected cd’s ontop of not burning… it most likely is dying but sounds like something is wrong (perhaps with firmware for example) that is stopping it from reading cd security.

I will try and take it to get looked at under warrenty on tuesday, just such a pain because I just got thief 3 which I’ve been waiting for since 2000. :frowning:

Thanks anyhow.

Hi BBR, :slight_smile:

You say the drive spins up with lights, then gives up and won't recognize a CD?   Plus the problems burning over 4x.   It might not be the problem, but those can be symptoms of a CD drive that needs a bit of cleaning.

I don't know the LG drives well, not sure how old yours is.   But if the rubber tire that grabs the CDs is too dirty, it will have problems spinning the discs at the exact proper speed they need.   So you get errors, or if bad enough, it won't even recognize a CD is inserted.     
  1. Open the tray on the LG

  2. Shut down your PC with the tray on the LG still open, grab a flashlight. After shutdown, you may need to manually (and gently) push in the tray a little for the next step, to get a good angle.

  3. Grab a Qtip and a bit of alcohol, look in there with the flashlight, see the round rubber tire in there? VERY gently, spin it around with the Qtip while cleaning it. Don’t leave any Qtip fuzzies in there, and don’t touch anything but the rubber tire inside.

I’ve seen this fix a crap load of CD drives. Some drives have better tires than others, that can last longer without needing cleaning. But again I don’t know the LG drives really. Good luck, hopefully your drive isn’t dead.


I reckon this is down to a firmware issue, either you or the seller (updated it before it was sold).

Firmware updates can well and truly bugger up a drive in many ways.


Ah k thanks I’ll try that now.

As to firmware, I’ve got version 1.0 and I can’t update it without voiding my warrenty (I think, its not very clear)

No fix I’m afraid. :frowning:

But come to think of it, around the time cds stopped burning was when I was burning this stuff I needed to take to uni for a group project, and the cd was unnaturally dusty, (the guy I gave it to commented on that) perhaps dust has built up in there.

If a CD is very dusty, you really should wipe it before you put it in your drive. You still could try to clean the lens inside the LG, it can deffinitely cause problems also. But you’d probably have to take the drive apart. It’s not hard, but forget about warranty after you open it up. And if you decide to try, be real careful. The lens “hovers” on a very delicate piece (if you were to blow on it it would shake), so you gotta be extra gentle with it.

    I'm not sure what merther means, firmware?    He said nothing about updating his firmware and THEN having the problem.   I don't understand how you think it might be firmware, seems very unlikely.    But then again, firmwares mixed with certain softs, certain settings, etc etc,  can cause all kinds of weird crap.

    I think what you need to do, is take out your drive, put it in someone elses PC and see if it works.   You can find out very quickly whether the problem is your drive or your PC.    A HUGE part of troubleshooting is to eliminate the suspected problems.    Once you know if your drive is good, go from there.    Good luck, I know computer problems are a pain in the arse..


I thought when you opened up a cd-rom unit, you was exposed to invisible radiation?

If he opens it up, he has to take it out of the PC tower, so it will be unplugged, of course. With no power, there is no laser. When they say invisible radiation (on the warning label i’m sure you mean), they mean the laser. Laser energy is a form of radiation. Even a low intensity laser beam can damage a human eye, so they must put that warning label. :slight_smile:

I just got an email back from the place I brought it saying official firmware won’t void my warrenty, if that doesnt help at all then I can take it in tomorrow and get them to try it in another computer.

I just hope that doesn’t take to long, and their website says theyre low on stock because it was just the end of the financial year a few days ago. So could be awhile to get a replacement. :frowning:

Well firmware didn’t fix it, I’ll just have to take it in tomorrow. :frowning: