Strange DVD problems

I am having strange problems with my DVD device. When I put in a DVD (or CD) it spins up etc and I can read the directory tree in Explorer (it’s a bit slow drilling down) - but get IO error msg box when I try to open a file. Looking in Event Viewer there a lots of System errors

Product: Windows Operating System
ID: 11
Source: Cdrom
Version: 5.2
Message: The driver detected a controller error on %1.
This problem is typically caused by a failing cable that connects the drive to the computer.

Now the cable can’t be completely duff as it can read the directory tree it seems to me and my CD/ROM drive on the same cable works fine. I don’t know whether it is related but my floppy drive (on a different cable) doesn’t work (put in a floppy - explorer can’t see it). I have 2 HDDs attached to that 2nd cable and they work just fine.

Device Manager says the device is working properly but when I click on Troubleshoot nothing happens.

OS: Windows XP Home
Sony DVD RW DW-22A

A lot of optical drive problems are related to the lack of a newer 80 wire cable, so I would check that first especially on an older machine. What drive are you using and is this a new problem or is the drive a new install?

Welcome to the forum.

thanks for quick response …

this is a new problem - the drive had been working (it’s a Sony DVD RW DW-22A a couple of years old - PC is less than a year old). I have not moved, changed or added any hardware recently.

What really puzzles me is that Explorer can read the directory tree and drill down to display folder contents - even detecting file extensions so double click opens the right app e.g. Photoshop, Acrobat but then, inevitably, after a a long pause up comes the I/O error message box. This happens with DVDs that I’ve blown and with commercial DVDs and CDs.

I think I’d try another cable first as that’s what Windows is suggesting the problem is.

New cable!
For sure.

yup - changed the cable - strangeness is no more - who’d’a thought that a cable could fail in such a way as to allow some data to be read but not all.

Thanks Chef and TimC!

Glad it worked out. Amazing how often the cable is to blame.