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Inconsistent CD-ROM

By MJackman ·
One of my systems is a legacy 1994 Compaq with un upgraded 486 133 CPU - the CD-ROM is now intermittent - that is, it is only sometimes recognized as a drive. However, if you put a music CD in, and hook the headphones to the CD, it always plays. Anyadvice why this might be not recognized about 75% of the time. About every 3 or 4 reboots, the CD-ROM is recognized as the D drive again.

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Inconsistent CD-ROM

by tony.colgrove In reply to Inconsistent CD-ROM

Make sure the ribbon cable is properly seated on the drive and the motherboard (or soundcard, depending on its age).
As for why you can always hear tunes through the headphones, is because that only needs power to the drive to work. No part of your PC is actually used for that.

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Inconsistent CD-ROM

by MJackman In reply to Inconsistent CD-ROM

No, it's more serious than that.

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Inconsistent CD-ROM

by jarrettc In reply to Inconsistent CD-ROM

I would also check to see if you have the latest BIOS.

Also is this CD-ROM a different one than what was shipped with the Compaq?

You may want to try and find the newest version of motherboard drivers as well, since this may be an issue with the IDE motherboard drivers.

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Inconsistent CD-ROM

by MJackman In reply to Inconsistent CD-ROM

It is a different one than was shipped with the Compaq, but the same thing happened to the original. Now I've almost eliminated the drive as the culprit, I think.

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Inconsistent CD-ROM

by Netuser In reply to Inconsistent CD-ROM

If you are have Win 95/98, you can check your CD-ROM by going to Device Manager to see if the status is working properly. Then click Performance Tab and go to Advanced Settings File System. Click on CD-ROM Tab and double check your settings. Make sure you set up the right speed of your CD-ROM.

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Inconsistent CD-ROM

by MJackman In reply to Inconsistent CD-ROM

Good suggestion, but it happens before Windows loads and Windows can't fix the problem.

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Inconsistent CD-ROM

by danpiers In reply to Inconsistent CD-ROM

There can be many different reasons for your problem. It is possible that your CD-ROM is beginning to fail. To play music, it only has to run a single speed. It is possible that it cannot always get up to speed to be recognized everytime you boot. Another thing that might be interesting to look into, is the fact that you mentioned the system's processor was upgraded. All Compaqs are not equal, and some have minor incompatibility problems when you change the processor from a 5 Volt Intel toa 3 Volt AMD, cyrix or other processor. (Sometimes, the motherboard cannot provide the correct voltage needed by the upgrade processor.) If you still have the original processor, you may try installing it to see if the CD-ROM begins to work everytime. If it works fine with the old processor, you may have to settle for a slower, but more compatible upgrade processor. Good luck.

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Inconsistent CD-ROM

by MJackman In reply to Inconsistent CD-ROM

Hmmm. This is an interesting possiblity - but the problem occurred long after I upgraded the processor.

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Inconsistent CD-ROM

by paul.brown In reply to Inconsistent CD-ROM

As others have noted, I would be looking in Device Manager. From the MS site, there are many articles around the issue of rela-mode v. virtual drivers (I have a problem upgrading an old Dell to Win98SE and the CD-ROM works fine from the emergency disk (real-mode drivers) but cannor be seen in My Computer as a drive etc. I now believe that I need to enable both IDE ports on the dual IDE device). It was in looking at that that I saw that Windows CD-ROM detection works differently in different circumstances, including one that may be releavant here: older proprietary (Mitsumi etc) drives that are associated with audio cards. In your case, playign a CD-ROM may be using the real-mode driver, but Windows generally will try to use the virtualdriver (which isn't working). I'd be looking in Device Manager again ... or modify your config.sys and autoexec.bat to force Windows to use the real-mode drivers (a bad course though, and won't work in WinMe which has no virtual driver support).

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Inconsistent CD-ROM

by MJackman In reply to Inconsistent CD-ROM

It could the the soundcard, or the new IDE drivers - but I tried installing another card and it didn't work (on this model Compaq the soundcard runs the CD-ROM.

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