1) win7 is at fault for whatever reason
2) upper&lower filters issue
3) drive is kaput
4) SATA connection is loose or at fault
Not, knowing can be maddening, however since win7 is only released this week if not the RC version, then a problem is brewing or becomes known. Some of the same issues with Vista/XP still appear with win7 as filter, google for fix. Yes, a drive will go belly up if bad power or a hit was done asyou stated you had to physically open drive. While SATA connections can be a cause, if it clicks or seats well, it shouldn't be it.
I suggest you get the Ubuntu .ISO file and burn to a CD and see if that works for a boot-up of the LIVE CD version. If it works OK, then the problems lies in s/w not h/w. Google for live Linux version of Ubuntu. If you're using win7 as a RC version, maybe the retail/upgrade version if glitch free, but you gave no acct. of what win7 you're using.
I have a brand new computer assembled by my son. It contains a Lite-on super allwrite DVD writer, and Windows 7 operating system. The DVD writer worked fine for my son to load software. He returned to school and I can't get the DVD to autoplay or even recognize the disk.
When I started up the computer te first itme, I inserted a game disc which read fine, I played half an hour and removed it. I inserted anoter, non-game disk, same session and the disk would not work nor would the "drawar" open. I had to manually open the player and remove the disk. I powered down and checked the connections then restarted. It still would not recognize the disk. I powered down and replaced one sada cable with the one that came with the reader. It willnot autoplay, and doesn't recognize that a disk is placed in the device, but now when I doubleclick on the devicein My computer, the "drawar opens and it asks politely for me to insert a disk.
I have tried Windows auto fix with no apparent changes or results.