Windows XP SP2 stopped being able to read from all removable drives

I’m having a very weird problem. This has happened to me before. Anything that my computer considers a removable drive, including floppy, DVD-Rom, my digital camera, or even a virtual drive, is unreadable unless I boot the pc with the media already inserted. In other words, if I put a dvd in, it says “Windows cannot read from this disk…” or in the case of my camera, it says it must be formatted. If I already have the dvd in when I boot the pc, it reads it just fine.

The last time this happened, I had Norton Systemworks 2005 installed. When I uninstalled it, the computer started working again. It happened again when I installed Nero and upgraded to OEM version and accidentally ran BackItUp. I uninstalled Nero and removed all instances in my registry. I even tried uninstalling and reinstalling my drives, but it didn’t fix. I did reinstall Nero (without INCD) and I also have Alcohol 120, but it worked after I installed that, so I don’t think it is the problem. I really don’t want to do a reformat right now, and I did check the sticky thread on disks not being read, but nothing in there helped.

Does anything usb work? If not have you tried reinstalling your usb drivers?

My printer works via usb, so I don’t think it’s usb drivers.

I get 2 different errors. I have a dvd burner, cd burner, and Alcohol’s virtual dvd drive. Anything inserted in those drives says the standard “Windows cannot read from this disk…” blah blah. Anything inserted in the floppy drive or the digital camera when it’s hooked up says “The disk in drive ? is not formatted, would I like to format it now?”

This wouldn’t be so frustrating if I hadn’t been able to fix it once before, heh.

Remove/uninstall Alcohol, restart, then try again.

OK, removed Alcohol. That didn’t fix it.

Well, I went ahead and uninstalled AntiVir and Windows Defender and everything’s working fine now. They had both been upgraded within the last week, but I know I had used my dvd burner since then. I give up, as long as it’s working.

Maybe there is some reason on the side of the guys that call XP SP2 the “world’s largest virus”…just kiding but conflicts with the O/S embeded cd writing facilities have some probability to show up.

I reinstalled Windows Defender and everything still works. It stopped working after I reinstalled the latest version of AntiVir though. So, AntiVir and Norton both made the problem appear. Any idea why an antivirus program would mess up all removable drives?