Laptop CD-DVD drives are also known as optical drives
Laptop CD-DVD drives are no
different than their counterpart drives in a desktop.
Because of the need to save space and weight in the laptop they are thinner but
retain the same functionality of the desktop version.
I am not saying that
they will have all the features of the desktop optical
drive, but they will read and write a cd or dvd. I have not seen any Dual Layer
drives for a laptop as of yet, you may expect them to be on the market soon.
As with a desktop cd/dvd to make it function to it's fullest you need the
This includes the hardware drivers and the video drivers.
Hardware drivers that the manufacture supplies and software drivers that a
program will require. Then there are additional drivers called Codec that some
video programs require that are not installed until you need them.
can be a pain to find. Before you go on the road and lose you internet
connection try all your programs, read and write to the cd/dvd, watch a movie,
watch an avi, mpeg, listen to some music.
Better to do it now than to be on an
aircraft over the Pacific with out the necessary drivers to watch that move you
bought just for the trip! Another program you may have and need to test before
you hit the road is a cd/dvd burning program. You don't want to get to your
work/vacation site and need to burn a cd/dvd and it not work!
Laptop CD-DVD drives have either IDE or SATA interface connections to the
motherboard. With a Notebook optical drives there aren't any cables the
connector on the drive connects directly to the connector on the motherboard.
The optical drive is one of the components that you can stop and remove while
the computer is powered up, just like a USB flash drive.
Same principle. You can
use the icon (Safely Remove Hardware) in the tray next to the clock to stop it. Why would you want to
stop and remove the drive? Maybe you have a floppy drive for the bay instead of
a usb floppy (some laptops still come with them) instead of powering down your
computer to change to the floppy you can stop the cd/dvd, pop it out and insert
the floppy drive, the hardware and OS will see the floppy then you can use it.
Or vice versa you have the floppy in the bay, stop it, remove it, install
the cd/dvd drive.
These Laptop CD or DVD drives do fail on occasion, not often enough to trouble shoot. If it
will not stay closed, or will not read three or four different cd or dvd's then
the drive has failed. They are not repairable, if the system is still under
warranty contact the manufacture for a replacement. Different manufactures have
different policies about replacement they may or may not replace it for free and
may require the old one back so don't take it out and throw it away until you
have the new one.
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Last note: I do not recommend you clean the reader head with anything besides
Isopropyl alcohol and a Qtip. If you use a Qtip insure you have the type that
will not leave any stray strands of cotton on the head, one strand that you can
not see will render the drive inoperable.
Here is a fall back option: If your
Laptop CD-DVD drives dies and you either can't
get a replacement or it will take a while to get the drive replaced consider
using a "Virtual CD/DVD" to install programs or watch movies, the only drawbacks
to this idea are the space required for storing the image and making the image.