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Old 5 Sep 2008, 10:50 AM   #1
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Default Unable to write to DVD :(

Hi all, and thanks in advance for trying to help.

I have looked through all the existing threads in search of a solution to my woes, and despite thinking I have managed to solve it on a few occassions, I am exactly where I was when I started. I really hope someone can help.

I have a Packard Bell PC, which is all OEM except for the DVD-writer.

I originally bought a DVD writer from a computer fair many years ago, and it worked perfectly, though was rarely used. I ran out of discs (I was using Datawrite yellow DVD-R and not once did I have a problem with writing to them). I wasn't aware at the time that there was a noticeable difference in reliability in discs, and just picked up some more DVD-Rs from Tesco - their own brand.

Since this moment I have been unable to write to DVD.

Obvious cause of the problem was the new type of disc, so I went this time to my local computer shop. They agreed the Tesco ones were liable to be of poor quality, and gave me some others - not sure what they were but they are totally white (printable), and they said these were excellent. I took them home, and I had the same problem.

I took the discs back, they tested one from the pack and said it was fine. Then we got talking about my DVD-writer, and the fact it was a few years old. They said it could well be that it's had enough and needs replacing. I bought myself a new Sony DVD RW DRU-190a all-singing all-dancing writer. I fitted it, and I had EXACTLY the same problem. This to me suggests it is neither the writer nor the discs at fault.

But I decided to source some of the original Datawrite yellows that I had previously, got them from eBay, and they don't work either! Now convinced it isn't the discs at fault, nor the writer.

Sorry this is going on so long, just wanna make sure I include everything.

Within the PC, I moved the new SONY drive to the top position, moved my DVD-Rom to underneath, and set them both to Cable Select (Enable Cable Select was bridged on my Hard Drive). I fitted a new ribbon cable which I was given at the shop when I bought the SONY drive. I have been into Device Manager, uninstalled the Secondary IDE channel and Primary IDE channel and rebooted a couple of times. Everything I look at suggests that everything is wired up correctly and has the right drivers. I have also updated the Firmware for the SONY writer.

I do not think the problem is caused by hardware, although I guess it is possible the new drive I bought is a dud. Having said that, if it is then it has the same problem as my old one as it fails in exactly the same way.

Before I actually mention the problem (hope someone is still with me), I need to add that I reformatted the hard drive, and installed a fresh copy of Windows XP Media Centre a while ago. This will sound stupid I know, but I am not sure if my DVD writing problem started prior to the reinstall, as a result of the install, or after the install. I can't remember how long the problem has been plaguing me, but only this week have I really had a chance to look into it in depth. I am so gutted I have been unable to fix this alone, but hope you can help.

Other than writing DVDs, my PC seems in tip-top form, no other problems of any kind with any hardware or software.

When I was successfully writing to DVD it was mainly movies and I was using DVD Decrypter with DVD Shrink. It was still these programmes when my problems started, though I have now got ImgBurn - and the problem is the same.

The Sony reads CDs and DVDs perfectly, and I have been able to rip both (CD's using WMP and DVDs using RipitForMe) with no problem. I can write data to CDs, and also music files to CD with no problem - using ImgBurn. However, when I try to write either data or a movie to DVD, the problem occurs.

Log to follow, but basically the problem is that it all seems to start ok, it says Writing LeadIn, the time elapsed starts to run, the time remaining pops up, then the time remaining goes to 'unknown'. It is when this happens I know it's not gonna work. The time elapsed will just keep on running and running. After a while, the 'write retries : 0' goes to '1', and this will just keep going up to 20 where it will give up.

This log is from a go I had earlier. As soon as write retries : 0 went to one I took the log, as I didn't want to wait for the 20 tries to write this thread.

I 20:44:47 ImgBurn Version 2.4.2.0 started!
I 20:44:47 Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition (5.1, Build 2600 : Service Pack 3)
I 20:44:47 Total Physical Memory: 523,760 KB - Available: 184,152 KB
I 20:44:47 Initialising SPTI...
I 20:44:47 Searching for SCSI / ATAPI devices...
I 20:44:48 Found 1 DVD-ROM, 1 DVD▒RW/RAM and 1 BD-ROM/HD DVD-ROM!
I 20:45:50 Operation Started!
I 20:45:50 Building Image Tree...
I 20:45:50 Checking Directory Depth...
I 20:45:50 Calculating Totals...
I 20:45:50 Preparing Image...
I 20:45:50 Checking Path Length...
I 20:45:50 Contents: 5 Files, 0 Folders
I 20:45:50 Size: 469,504 bytes
I 20:45:50 Sectors: 231
I 20:45:50 Image Size: 1,245,184 bytes
I 20:45:50 Image Sectors: 608
I 20:45:50 Operation Successfully Completed! - Duration: 00:00:00
I 20:46:03 Operation Started!
I 20:46:03 Building Image Tree...
I 20:46:05 Checking Directory Depth...
I 20:46:05 Calculating Totals...
I 20:46:05 Preparing Image...
I 20:46:05 Checking Path Length...
I 20:46:05 Contents: 5 Files, 0 Folders
I 20:46:05 Size: 469,504 bytes
I 20:46:05 Sectors: 231
I 20:46:05 Image Size: 1,245,184 bytes
I 20:46:05 Image Sectors: 608
I 20:46:06 Operation Successfully Completed! - Duration: 00:00:03
I 20:46:07 Operation Started!
I 20:46:07 Source File: -==/\/[BUILD IMAGE]\/\==-
I 20:46:07 Source File Sectors: 608 (MODE1/2048)
I 20:46:07 Source File Size: 1,245,184 bytes
I 20:46:07 Source File Volume Identifier: My Documents
I 20:46:07 Source File Application Identifier: IMGBURN V2.4.2.0 - THE ULTIMATE IMAGE BURNER!
I 20:46:07 Source File Implementation Identifier: ImgBurn
I 20:46:07 Source File File System(s): ISO9660, UDF (1.02)
I 20:46:07 Destination Device: [1:0:0] SONY DVD RW DRU-190A 1.65 (D (ATA)
I 20:46:07 Destination Media Type: DVD-R (Disc ID: MCC 03RG20) (Speeds: 4x, 6x, 8x, 12x, 16x, 18x)
I 20:46:07 Destination Media Sectors: 2,297,888
I 20:46:07 Write Mode: DVD
I 20:46:07 Write Type: Incremental
I 20:46:07 Write Speed: MAX
I 20:46:07 Link Size: Auto
I 20:46:07 Test Mode: No
I 20:46:07 OPC: No
I 20:46:07 BURN-Proof: Enabled
I 20:46:08 Filling Buffer... (20 MB)
I 20:46:08 Writing LeadIn...

I would be incredibly grateful for any assistance or ideas, because I have been working on fixing this for a few days and have gotten nowhere.

I do notice the write speed is MAX, but I can't find where to change that!

Thanks in advance
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Old 5 Sep 2008, 02:55 PM   #2
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The discs you have now are very good - one of the best (MCC media code).

So, it would seem your writer is no good (they often show they are on the way out by not writing DVDs first, while being perfectly happy with CDs). It's a new drive though, isn't it? Perhaps it needs to be RMA'd. Does it write BDs OK? Have you tried that?

I wouldn't have it as cable select though. If the drive is a master, select it as master and select the DVD Rom as slave (if it is a slave).

Reset all ImgBurn's settings to default (in particular, write type should be DAO) and then change the write speed to 8x in the main GUI.

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Last edited by blutach; 5 Sep 2008 at 03:04 PM
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Old 5 Sep 2008, 10:36 PM   #3
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Hi

Thanks for the reply and the warm welcome.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blutach View Post

The discs you have now are very good - one of the best (MCC media code).

Glad to hear it

So, it would seem your writer is no good (they often show they are on the way out by not writing DVDs first, while being perfectly happy with CDs). It's a new drive though, isn't it? Perhaps it needs to be RMA'd. Does it write BDs OK? Have you tried that?

It is a brand new drive, yes, fresh from the shop. The problem I am having seems identical to the one I was having with the previous drive which seems a coincidence to me and suggests it isn't either drive at fault though I still haven't totally discounted that idea.

I don't understand what RMAing is or does!
And I don't know what a BD is either!
This has been a real learning curve for me and I hope you will bear with me while I catch up lol.

I wouldn't have it as cable select though. If the drive is a master, select it as master and select the DVD Rom as slave (if it is a slave).

I was under the impression (wrongly I now guess) that CS was the best option to have if the hard drive and drives supported it? My HD is set to 'enable cable select' and both my drives are set to 'cs' too. Incidentally, they weren't originally - and the problem has been the same both ways. If I switch them back I assume I switch the DVD-RW to master, DVD-Rom to slave, then change the setting on the HD too?

Reset all ImgBurn's settings to default (in particular, write type should be DAO) and then change the write speed to 8x in the main GUI.

I have changed write type to DAO/SAO and knocked the speed all the way down to x4 - figured it would give it extra chance to work, and if successful I could ramp it up for the next one
I have attempted another write, and it too failed like the others.

Here is the log, I hope you can help:

I 11:08:07 ImgBurn Version 2.4.2.0 started!
I 11:08:07 Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition (5.1, Build 2600 : Service Pack 3)
I 11:08:07 Total Physical Memory: 523,760 KB - Available: 192,864 KB
I 11:08:07 Initialising SPTI...
I 11:08:07 Searching for SCSI / ATAPI devices...
I 11:08:07 Found 1 DVD-ROM, 1 DVD▒RW/RAM and 1 BD-ROM/HD DVD-ROM!
I 11:10:15 Operation Started!
I 11:10:15 Source File: G:\Movies\ISOs\10000_BC.ISO
I 11:10:15 Source File Sectors: 2,285,850 (MODE1/2048)
I 11:10:15 Source File Size: 4,681,420,800 bytes
I 11:10:15 Source File Volume Identifier: 10000_BC
I 11:10:15 Source File Volume Set Identifier: 016A7E18DVDSHRNK
I 11:10:15 Source File Implementation Identifier: DVD Shrink
I 11:10:15 Source File File System(s): ISO9660, UDF (1.02)
I 11:10:15 Destination Device: [1:0:0] SONY DVD RW DRU-190A 1.65 (D (ATA)
I 11:10:15 Destination Media Type: DVD-R (Disc ID: CMC MAG. AM3) (Speeds: 4x, 6x, 8x, 12x, 16x)
I 11:10:15 Destination Media Sectors: 2,297,888
I 11:10:15 Write Mode: DVD
I 11:10:15 Write Type: DAO
I 11:10:15 Write Speed: 4x
I 11:10:15 Link Size: Auto
I 11:10:15 Test Mode: No
I 11:10:15 OPC: No
I 11:10:15 BURN-Proof: Enabled
I 11:10:16 Filling Buffer... (20 MB)
I 11:10:18 Writing LeadIn...
W 12:33:55 Failed to Write Sectors 320 - 351 - Reason: Power On, Reset, or Bus Device Reset Occurred
W 12:33:55 Retrying (1 of 20)...
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Old 6 Sep 2008, 01:38 AM   #4
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I am leaning towards suspecting the power supply as the likely culprit.

Disconnect the dvd-rom and BD-rom, make the dvd burner master at the end of the cable, make sure the burner is connected to the closest power adapter to the Poer supply and no other devices are sharing it.

the computer is clean?
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Old 6 Sep 2008, 04:22 AM   #5
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Hi, thanks for the reply.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chewy View Post
I am leaning towards suspecting the power supply as the likely culprit.

Disconnect the dvd-rom and BD-rom, make the dvd burner master at the end of the cable, make sure the burner is connected to the closest power adapter to the Poer supply and no other devices are sharing it.

I have now disconnected the DVD-Rom (I don't have BD-Rom). The DVD-RW is now the only thing on the cable. It is set as master. I have changed the HDD to master too, and it also has no slave.

What do you mean by closest power supply? The one with lowest number (they are P1, P2, P3, P4, etc). Currently the RW drive has P5 (HDD has P3), I wasn't aware there was any difference between them tbh.

the computer is clean?

Clean as in not much dust? It isn't showroom clean but I would say it is quite clean. If you meant something else, please explain, thanks.
I have tried twice more since making these changes to write just a few small files to DVD using ImgBurn, and my attempts have failed in exactly the same way.

Could this be a registry problem? Maybe occurred when I reformatted the HD? Is there anything in particular I can check for? I am prepared to reformat my HD and clean install XP if necessary, but would rather not as my PC is as sweet as a nut in every other way.

Thanks again for your help.
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Old 6 Sep 2008, 04:51 AM   #6
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Since Chewy suspects the power supply, if possible check the voltage at the connector with a digital volt meter. Measure the voltage while burning a disk and when you are not burning a disk.
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Old 6 Sep 2008, 11:04 AM   #7
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I am very pleased to report that this evening I have written both a data DVD and also a movie DVD!

I visited the Packard Bell website to find information on how to find any suitable BIOS/Chipset upgrades for my PC. The PB site was excellent, and invited me to enter my PC's serial number (thank you Belarc Advisor for telling me what it was) then presented me with all the upgrades / drivers / etc that my PC needed. This included a more recent BIOS update, and also a more recent Chipset upgrade.

It also included an IDE patch!! The file was called col2idepatch in case anyone looks here in the future with a similar problem.

I installed the Chipset upgrade and the IDE patch (not the BIOS update yet as I need a floppy and for some reason my floppies aren't formatting - a job for another day!)

I believe one of those two updates solved my problem. The discs wrote at x8, very quiet and I have watched the film on my own DVD player and it was perfect throughout.

Just wanna thanks everyone for all your help and ideas, nice one
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Old 6 Sep 2008, 11:31 AM   #8
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Quote:
I originally bought a DVD writer from a computer fair many years ago, and it worked perfectly
why would a new driver be needed for a new burner if the old one worked before?

unless something corrupted the ide driver

I just use windows default myself

I don't agree with your analysis
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Old 6 Sep 2008, 07:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big-Dave View Post
Before I actually mention the problem (hope someone is still with me), I need to add that I reformatted the hard drive, and installed a fresh copy of Windows XP Media Centre a while ago. This will sound stupid I know, but I am not sure if my DVD writing problem started prior to the reinstall, as a result of the install, or after the install. I can't remember how long the problem has been plaguing me, but only this week have I really had a chance to look into it in depth. I am so gutted I have been unable to fix this alone, but hope you can help.
OK, here is my theory:

My PC came with the newer BIOS/Chipset/IDE patch installed. The dates of them are from before I got my PC.

When I reformatted my hard drive that would obviously wipe everything, including those.

I then fresh-installed Windows XP onto an empty drive. I actually went to the PB website at this time to get the audio and graphics drivers for my PC as I didn't have a proper recovery disc. I should have looked at what else I might have needed.

It's only a theory, and could of course be a wrong 'un, but to me it fits nicely with everything that has happened.

I'm just pleased it is working properly again!!
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Old 7 Sep 2008, 03:05 AM   #10
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So, the lesson learned is when starting from Scratch ... make sure you have the correct Drivers!

But I'd be tickled pink as long as whatever FIX solved my problem.

Taking a Hammer to it, it would have been my next suggestion!


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Last edited by gonwk; 7 Sep 2008 at 03:08 AM
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