Sony CD/DVD drive doesn't recognise inserted discs! (Sony DW-U14A)

[qanda]This thread is about the Sony DW-U14A. Click here to see full specs[/qanda]Hi,

I have a rather aging PC which has a Sony RW DW-U14A drive. I don’t know why it is, but sometimes it just doesn’t recognise a CD or DVD that has been inserted into the machine. This is my problem now which I am trying to fix once and for all. The computer Device Manager acknowledges that it’s working normally but nothing fires up when I put in assorted CD or DVD discs.

A magazine I read had a letter by someone that had a similar problem (he also had a Sony drive!) and the magazine suggested that the problem could be caused by ‘the dye’ on the drive. It then said that this could be fixed by ‘flashing’ the firmware. It then gave a website ( from which you were supposed to select the drive name and download the fixer. However this particular drive is not listed on the website (too old ?) so where does one go from here?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

which CD’s?

Be as specific as possible…

Some CD’s that contain “Multimedia” content skirt the edge of the RedBook standards and computers will not play them.


I have a PC magazine which comes with dvds which my pc normally plays. But now it doesn’t recognise them.

Not all CDs and DVDs have an ‘autorun.inf’ file so they are not supposed to automatically do something when inserted. You might need to use Windows Explorer and browse to the disc to see what it has on it.

It is also possible that your Windows has the ‘autorun’ or ‘autoplay’ function turned off.

PCs are not designed to only read RedBook (audio only). They should read Red, Yellow, Green, White, Orange, DVD, etc…


I have a similar defect that has just started. DVD- RW will not erase using Nero or Copyto DVD. Message comes up ( Illegal Disc). These are ones i have always used (Verbatim). If i erase with my other burner it will then burn OK and play OK all disc types. I guess unit is dying, does anyone know of a way to check it?