How to tell a drive is dead?

My Pioneer 107d has been working fine over a year but now it reports power calibration error and other strange events.

Currently Nero has timed out in the middle of writing a dvd-rw,no error with no progress but responds when I click cancel after 6 mins of 4% burnt

The drive reguarly freezes the entire machine up so I have to cut the power

Before this trouble I had tried to update the firmware from 1.05 to 1.22 but the drive was not recognised as a 107. Today I tried to burn a dvd-r at 8x speed and it came up with power calibration error and aborted

Then I wrote an entire dvd+r at 4x speed but it refused to close the disk at the end (‘disk at once failed, writing high compatibility disk ending’), nero partially recognises the disk contents now but cant close the disk without spitting out the disk before 100%

Sounds to me like the drive is no good, though it has written a cd-rw ok.

Is there any test I can do without moving it to other machines to test it. I thought sharing an old HDD on the same ide channel may be a problem but disconnecting that doesnt help. The drive is connected at ultra dma 2 - 33


From the little you have said it looks like a bad flash.
Download the firmware again and reflash or if you have a copy of the previous firmware use that.
Beware!! Do not power down or restart if the flash hangs as this can kill the drive.
Make sure that you are doing nothing else on your machine whilst the flash is in progress and shut down as many background processes/tasks you can.
Have you changed media lately, it could be bad /poor quality?
DVD-RW can degrade quite quickly!

I thought phase-change media would be less sensitive to degradation than organic dye media but will not give great scans.
If that’s true, then DVD-RAM can degrade quite quickly too…?

Hi :slight_smile:
As I understand it, despite manufacturers claims DVD-/+RWs have a brief life relatively speaking. This is not the case with DVD-RAM, which is why businesses use this format.
Personally I use SL media & when superceded in terms of data stored it goes to my recycling bin.

A brief life because they will only survive few writes or a brief life because they were written to once or twice and stored?

Ditto! Reflash! And then flash back if that does not work!

Update drivers and software, then clean the drive.

Thanks for the advice, I did not ever manage to flash this drive. It always tells me drive not found.

I could try to flash it now but it will probably say the same thing, Ive tried to flash it as a 107D, A07U & A07XLA but all of them say the drive type is not correct.

For now I have swapped it into another machine to see if that changes anything and Iam using an even older and slower TDK drive that has been refubished. I’ll try cleaning the Pioneer if thats possible :confused:

Last I checked, the pioneer had stopped reporting as a drive at all which is a pity as I hoped to use it for a cd burner