Replacement for ND-5100A please help!

Hi,

my ND-5100A in my HP-notebook (nx9005, two years old) does not read most cd-roms anymore and makes funny “knocking” noises. I tried various things but nothing did help. It’s out of warranty, so I want to replace the drive. I asked HP-Support what drives would fit in my notebook but they could not give me an answer, instead they wanted to sell me a ND-5100A for an insane amount of money.
I wanted to ask you, if it is possible to replace it with a newer NEC drive (like ND-7551).

The bezel on my old drive is black and has a plain rectangle shape (14 mm x 128 mm, 0.55" x 5").
The drive is attached to the secondary IDE channel as master. Since the NEC drives come by default as master I don’t need to flash the firmware. Am I right???

Thanks for any help in advance!!!

Probably a 6550 is a better choice because of the better support…?!?

Why do you think the ND-6550 has better support?

Just some more questions:
I am very confused with this master/slave/cable-select stuff:
Are really fixed master/slaves drives sold or are only cable-select drives sold, some of them inverse cable-select??

I recently read that I can’t use the information from Nero InfoTool to find out, if my drive is master/slave. Is there any other way? Does the firmware version (1.20) give a hint?

The ND-7551 is sold under the name ND7551GEN, what does this “GEN” mean?

Hope somebody can help me, many thanks.