Windows not recognizing DVD-R's



It’s an interesting problem, and I googled for a loong time for it.
I see that a lot of people have the same problem, but none has posted a solution for it.

I have 2 DVD drives, and both drives don’t recognize DVD-R’s.
When you insert a DVD-R, your drive transforms to a CD Drive, and you see a “CD Drive(E)” next to the disk’s icon and a “DVD-R” just under the icon.

I booted from a clean DOS disk, and used OAKCDROM.SYS + MSCDEX.SYS
Now, I can see all the DVD-R’s, but can’t copy because DOS doesn’t recognize 2+ GB HDDs.

I installed various NERO 6&7 versions. NERO recognizes only the disk label, and shows it as empty.
I tried ISOBUSTER, and ISOBUSTER sees the disk full with files.
I tried ULTRAISO, and ULTRAISO also sees the disk fully.

But windows does not.

I removed all the file filters like pfc.sys, pxhelp20.sys, elbycdfl.sys.
I tried changing udfs.sys to different versions.

But windows is insistent on not recognizing DVD-R’s.

This is clearly a software problem, but many people suggest hardware solutions like cleaning, power calibration etc.

Does anybody have an idea what may be the culprit to this?


Just to confirm, can you copy this particular disc to your hard drive with one of the apps you named above (UltraISO and ISOBuster)?

If yes, then install Windows XP SP2.

Older versions of Windows XP were not designed to read blank DVD media - even blank DVD media that has already been recorded on.

Installing SP2 solves that problem.


The problem is caused by XP SP2…
Yes I can copy the files via IsoBuster etc. All of them, cleanly.

This began to be a common problem that Nobody could identify.

Here are the data:
I had XP SP2 installed. I could read all of my DVD-R’s cleanly.
Than, one day, it started not to read the discs. About 3-4months ago.

Disks can be read on DOS, linux, and by CD-DVD recovery software cleanly.
But not by windows. And it is mostly Data type DVD-R’s.

No it is not hardware, lens etc. I have 100 movie DVDs. All work clean.
DVD+R’s work all clean.

I took image of my drive last year. When it worked nicely. I formatted HDD.
Reinstalled my image. Nada. Zilch.

All my guess is Microsoft did something about copy protection.
And they sucked in it.
IMO it was installed by either MSN Messenger or Windows Media Player.
And even if you make a fresh install, if you are connected to internet,
MS installs something to your system and you can’t read your Data DVD-R’s anymore.

No it is not ATIP hider. ATIP hider hides the drive. I can read movie DVDs.
No it is not DMA. Not lens. Not IDE-RAID etc. Not cables.

It’s something about File Systems of Data DVD-R’s not being recognized in Windows anymore.



it would be very strange, if DVD+R were treated different from DVD-R. As you have Nero installed, please run Nero CD/DVD speed, insert on of those DVD-R discs and select the disc info tab. Post the result please. Also, tell us, what drives you are exactly using.

Besides this media theory, I’m thinking about, this might also be due to format issues, generated by some application that was used to burn onto these discs.



My drives are NEC 6650A, and QSI SBW242B (slim versions).

Discs are generally recorded with UltraIso or Nero.

I attached some screenshots + InfoTool txt messages.


could be a longshot , but i suggest youll use windows update and get all of the updates , its possible its a sp2 issue and theres a fix


I insist that the solution is not on update…

I installed Win98, and guess what. I can see discs.
In our local university forums, we were discussing the same thing.
There are other people who reported DVD-R’s not working on XP but working on DOS or Win98.

The common points among all are, discs are Data DVD-Rs, and OS is Windows XP. And it all started suddenly a few months ago.

I am guessing, just guessing that Microsoft did something… To urge people to upgrade their versions to Vista.


its a very paranoid assumption that microsoft will purposly make xp hate dvd-rs , i still claim some updating might resolve the issue


Hello everyone!

I must agree with blackrider, I have exactly the same problem, until recently my NEC ND3500A worked flawlessly, until the last windows updates when dvd-r,rw,and +'s are only recognized by a an empty CD :frowning:

However, I can boot from those dvd’s, and in fact I’ve created a second partition on my hd, installed vista, and in vista all my dvd’s are recognized as it shoud be on xp!
I’ve also re-formatted and re-installed xp allover again, after automatic updates finished, the problem came back…

IMO Microsoft is doing something wrong here. is it a bug? or just one of their tricks I don’t know.

I’ll try to write a report to Microsoft and hope for something…


I doubt this is BLANK media then.


Anybody that can help with a SpeedyCD complex problem please refer to post entitled “Help! Complex error with backpack DVD+/-RW burner” Thank you :bow: :smiley: :smiley: :smiley:



is anyone still posting to this topic? i was wondering if anyone has found a solution to this problem? i thought that i was going nuts when this started happening to me not too long ago. i was burning dvd-r media just fine until i did a windows update and all of a sudden dvd-r became useless. been searching for a remedy for a few days now almost non stop because of the amount of dvd-r blank discs i have and storage that i have on dvd-r.


and like a previous poster said, dvd+r and every other media works just fine.


I have the same problem …And I’ve been looking for a solution for about a month now. This malfunction of windows is driving me crazy…I’ve tried almost everything I know and was told to do…NOTHING. I don’t know what’s going on and can’t explain it. I mean it makes no sense. My DVD-Rs were working perfectly just a couple of months ago. However I believe that the update excuse is just too paranoid. I mean common…If it was as they say it is we would be packed full of disatisfied customers at this moment that we are speaking. It would be all over the web by now. Aren’t I right?
Anyways, you might want to take a look at my posts though I don’t think they will help a lot. Basically you will find out what is not the problem by looking throught them (lol). I’m still searching for a solution…I’ll try to get back to you (via Private Messaging) if I find it and I would appreciate it if you would do the same I figure two are better than one if you know what I mean… Hope things work out for us. :wink:


Do you have Alcohol installed?


now why would anyone rule out anything based on paranoia? it has become a troublesome for too many to explain from the searches i’ve done on this problem, and you really have to take into consideration the amount of people who were advised by forums such as this one or by support people to go out and get new drives cause the one they have is broken, and also those who were to frustrated to even look for a solution and got new drives. i like to look at common correlations to figure a problem out and there is one significant one: people updated windows and lost this function or got a virus and repaired windows then updated and lost this function. no one who has come looking for an answer lost the function of recognizing dvd-r discs until their most recent windows update including myself. i don’t know, maybe these updates made our firmware obsolete, but it’s crazy to rule out something on just because a public outcry didn’t happen. besides, it’s pretty apparent that this is a fairly new development.


Don’t get me wrong. I’m not ruling anything out, just I really suggest that that should be our last assumption, cause there is nothing we can do about it in the time being plus I don’t recall myself updating at that time (don’t have automatic update on), however I can’t be 100% sure for sometimes my siblings play around on the pc. Sorry I gave you the wrong impression. :o I was simply stating the word “paranoid” as an emphasism on my opinion, I don’t rule the opposite opinion out though. I just would like to here something we can really do about it. I guess you can say I’m being optimistic in some way (lol). :slight_smile:
I downloaded a trial version of alcohol 120%, would that do? I’m really not aquanted with this program so I might need some help on the matter. If I understand correctly this program allows the user to play discs without needing the physical disc. Right?


Assuming that the problem is really the last updates installed before this whole issue accured I was wondering if by removing them there might be a chance that all the side affects will go with them.
I just got done searching through my updates and I found that on the 13th of June 2007 they’re 4 updates installed. I first published about my problem on the 30th so I’m guessing if any updates should be considered suspicious these are the ones:
However I’ve seen that this thread has been going on for a while (20th of February 2007) so I can’t be sure that the updates are the problem. If anyone has an opinion on this please share it with us. :wink:


I tried Alcohol 120% and even though the program couldn’t read from the LG drive (probably because windows explorer was interfering) it could copy the contents successfully. I could afterwards play the contents with no problem. :slight_smile: However these are backuped files and if I had to complete this process every time I needed something from the past I would go mad. It’s time consuming plus it takes up storage space. :frowning: Even though this program might come in handy sometimes, I believe it’s more for people that do a lot of gaming. At least it’s more practical for there situation than mine. :iagree: Thanks for the info though. :wink:

Problem still remains. I need my drive to read directly from the disc!!! :frowning:


Is anyone still on this forum?