This has plauged every OS I've ever used, entire system wide slowdowns and lockups simply because a CD/DVD has been inserted and Windows is going its thing initialising/preping/whatever it does when a disc is inserted. I mean you have a static file system dammit, its not going to change on you or anything (at least not without other significant things happening to it). Why can't an OS (well I'm basing this on Windows XP) just cache the FS of a disc once inserted and let you browse just that instead of having to spin up and down all the time each time you change directories or get properties for a file? Shouldn't this be almost a standard by now? As long as you code the thing conservatively the following issue shouldn't be much of a problem (disc changes not properly being recognized)
Obviously once you start reading a file it can spin up and do its thing. But I just had to go through 25 odd discs looking for something and the delays of going through directories and having my whole comp being brought to a standstill upon disc insertion started to become a real hassle.
Also I've noticed that often times you can eject a disc and put in a new one, yet all you will see is the contents of the previous disc, even refreshing (F5 or the various buttons) won't properly update it. Sometimes just a few ejects/re-insertions will fix the issue but it shouldn't have to come to right clicking on the drive and hitting "eject" just to get the OS to properly realize that a disc has left the drive (and even then it doesn't always work).
Please, the point of this is NOT to start an OS comparison or gripe about windows/Microsoft in general. I just want to know why this seems to damned buggy. Maybe it has to do with disabling that service that identifies optical drives. IE it names them things like "NEC 3500 DVD Writer" instead of the generic name (forget what it is) that it threatens you with when you disable it. Actually I don't think that it is disabled, which only further adds to my confusion.
This is half a specific OS thing and (I'll bet) an OS thing in general, somebody please tell me why my reasoning that a discs FS should be cached and parsed is flawed, or that OS makers are already way ahead of me and the problem is solely on my end. I know that sometimes the OS WILL cache things and not spin up even though you browse the disc, but its not an absolute thing.