Windows Vista forum

General discussion

dvd drive thinks data disc is blank

by looseshoes / January 11, 2009 5:33 AM PST

I am using Vista Ultimate. It has recognized other data dvd's in the past, but now it doesn't. I don't think the problem is the physical disc brand. I have tried several types. I have also reinstalled the driver. Is this a bug in the way the disc was burned? Any help would be appreciated.

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Re: data disk not recognised.
by Kees Bakker / January 11, 2009 5:52 AM PST

1. Check the disk in a few other machines.
2. Clean the head with a head cleaner.
3. Check if it will read other DVD's (a retail movie would be fine)
4. Replace the drive

These are your options. Better report on the first three before you do #4.


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not that
by looseshoes / January 11, 2009 9:46 PM PST

Thanks for responding Kees. The drive works. I have played retail movies recently. Will try discs in other machines. I am pretty sure it is a write error bug in Vista, though this is just a hunch.

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The lessons over the years is ?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 11, 2009 11:17 PM PST
In reply to: not that

That Microsoft's supplied CD/DVD writing tools can be untrustworthy.

I'd not spend a moment but move up to other tools like IMGBURN, CDBURNERXP (works on Vista here) and what other titles you like.

I'd also take a page from the past about drag to disk or "packet writing" or "DVD like a floppy" software. The page on that tells us that is too unrelible.

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Hi bakker, your help is much useful,
by nquyduong / January 9, 2014 2:07 PM PST

my dvd drive always shows all disc blank, however, after cleaning the head, it is ok now, thank you!!!

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disc drive show disc empty
by Qasim121 / October 14, 2015 12:13 PM PDT

what is head clean please show me picture so i clean it easily

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Link to Lens/Head Cleaner
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / October 14, 2015 12:24 PM PDT
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same issue here
by bagedgttib / January 12, 2009 11:33 AM PST

i am having this same issue but now with 2 drives.

they worked just fine running on XP, but now on my vista home prem. sp1 both drives see any burned cd/dvd's as blank but all production dvd's (store purchased) run fine.
i tried all in my XP laptop and they are read just fine.
tried drivers,
tried new cable....

out of ideas

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(NT) Tried new drive?
by Kees Bakker / January 12, 2009 4:05 PM PST
In reply to: same issue here
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Sounds proper.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 12, 2009 4:13 PM PST
In reply to: same issue here

If I create a DVD with that Nero and drag and drop, that DVD may not be readable on another XP machine without installing Nero. Nothing really busted about that. Just a lesson about using drag and drop recording.

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no fix
by bagedgttib / January 12, 2009 11:27 PM PST
In reply to: Sounds proper.

the second drive is new and it does not matter the program. nero, realplayer, etc

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Then it's proof the drive is dead.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 12, 2009 11:40 PM PST
In reply to: no fix

If it is as you say it is, it's dead.

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Vista and blank discs
by unlucky57 / April 5, 2010 5:29 PM PDT

I have a similar problem and have been trying to find a solution for many months and all suggestions have failed to make a difference. But my problem has a strange addition. If I use a command prompt, I can list the files on the disc, but any attempt to access the CD/DVD drive using a GUI programme (whether Windows Explorer or another third party programme) and Vista wants to try and format or burn what it thinks is a blank disc. I removed the CD/DVD drive and put it into an older WindowsXP machine and it performed without problems. So this must be a Vista bug.

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Why yes it is.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / April 5, 2010 10:38 PM PDT
In reply to: Vista and blank discs

If you read this discussion you see that we forget Vista's native recording methods and use other software. As to the reading problems that's not unusual with older drives and more.

Then there are those that maintain it is a Vista bug. But how would you get it fixed? That is, we know how to correct this with new drives, the upper lower filters CODE 39 issue, duplicating said CD/DVD and using a CLOSED SINGLE SESSION. Those that dig in their heels and want other fixes may have to wait for a very long time.

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same problem here!
by shawn2571 / September 12, 2011 7:10 PM PDT
In reply to: Vista and blank discs

in windows 7 I believe it is some kind of anti piracy thing in windows vista and windows 7 I don't know how it got my pc though? I haven't run any window updates and mine was working fine until a couple of weeks ago? I have also heard rumors of it being something to do with the installation on itunes? who knows but it is definitely software related! I am using the same discs i have always used and I have tried 3 different drives in 3 different computers and it still happens everytime? I wish someone would find the solution to it?

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A solution to what?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 13, 2011 3:45 AM PDT
In reply to: same problem here!


Since you think it is antipiracy then one could think you are doing a pirate thing.

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by Justchillin69 / March 23, 2011 8:22 AM PDT

I had the same problem and I found your question. I hate when people haven't dealt with a problem and then they give a bunch of lame answers like "time to buy a new drive" or "the disc isn't finalized."

Anyway, i found a solution that worked for me:

I have Nero CD-DVD Speed which is a utility that checks your DVD drive's performance by running a series of tests on speed, and data accessing.

I was getting the same problem, i would put a finalized disc in the drive and it would act as if it were a blank disc, and would ask me to give it a name. I gave it a name alright, #$@*&%!

Result: after running it through the tester, windows vista was able to recognize discs again.

Note: I did not clean the head.

If you've cleaned the head and ran it through this test and it still doesn't work, then buy a new drive lol.

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A Real Solution Indeed
by crushcard / July 14, 2012 6:19 PM PDT
In reply to: A REAL SOLUTION

I agree with Justchillin69. It's hard for someone to give a solution to a problem when they never encountered the problem. That said, I've trained in IT, and have been doing PC repair work for years. That said, I truly believe this is a glitch with the windows 7/windows Vista systems. I've found that Data DVDs that worked within the last 24 hrs, stopped working on my windows 7 system. It would treat the DVD as empty, attempt to rename it, and even query me on 'how to treat' the disc. The DVD would read absolutely fine on any of my Windows XP systems. The laptop is actually fairly new, and is less than a year old as of the posting date of my reply.

So far, the only solution I've come across is to use the fix it on the Microsoft site.

This will "fix" the problem. However, the fix isn't fool proof, and it sometimes has to be run a few times to take.
After running this fix, it starts reading my Data DVD again as it normally would. However, this isn't a full fix, since I have to keep running this fix every time Windows 7 decides it to read a DVD as blank.
I keep a copy of the fix on my desktop in case it needs to be run again. Unfortunately, as I've mentioned, it's not a full fix, but can be similar to Justchillin69's.

Microsoft offers it for free, so I advise those who still have the problem to give it a whirl. Again, no guarantees, but it worked for me.

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