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Thread: DVD Drive not recognised

  1. #1
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    DVD Drive not recognised

    I've got a fairly old Dell workstation (P-III). It has a CD drive which is automatically recognised by the BIOS and can be used to boot the PC from a CD.
    I swapped it with a DVD drive and now get the BIOS message "unidentified device", it doesn't show up in Windows either.
    Shouldn't a DVD drive be recognised as a standard CD drive by the BIOS? I'm pretty sure DVD drives were around when this computer was new. Is it possibly something I can fix?

  2. #2
    Friendly Neighborhood Super Moderator phishhead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by d000hg View Post
    Shouldn't a DVD drive be recognised as a standard CD drive by the BIOS? I'm pretty sure DVD drives were around when this computer was new.
    unless its a bad drive. Was it new when you installed it?



  3. #3
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    This drive has been living in another PC of similar age, and always worked fine. Unfortunately that PC has died and I need a DVD drive in the first PC. I'm pretty sure the drive works (certainly the lights and motor work).

    Any ideas?

  4. #4
    Old and Cranky Super Moderator rik's Avatar
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    If the drive is being seen, regardless of how..."unidentified device" in this case, it IS being seen. The bios just doesn't know what it is. You might try clearing the NVRAM for your bios, or sometimes just resetting the bios defaults works to have devices recognized. You will have to check the specific motherboard specs for how to clear the nvram. Possibly a software setting or maybe by jumper.

    Check those and then maybe even a bios update depending on the age of the sytem. Which Dell is it?

  5. #5
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    Well I fixed it by playing with jumper settings on the drive itself - I assume I changed it from Master / Slave or vice versa, although I can't find documentation for the settings. I just moved the jumper and it worked.

    I would have expected a different response from the PC when it was set up wrong though - either it not appearing at all or some sort of useful message.

    Anyway, it now appears to be working fine - I was pleasantly suprised to find my 7-year-old DVD drive can read a DVD from my DVD-writer drive in another PC, after remembering how writeable CDs were often unusable in older CD drives in the old days
    And I now have Windows Server 2008 running, which is what all my recent posts have revolved around!

  6. #6
    Old and Cranky Super Moderator rik's Avatar
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    Cool. Glad you got it fixed.

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