29 Dec 2010

Disappearing CDroms under win7

I installed Win7 reluctantly back in September 2010 having been a solid Linux user for some 4 years – I mainly wanted to be able to check out and use some of the leading Amateur radio software packages – My first impressions were good and I soon got used to using it – all my scanners/printers/drives/and accessories ran fine (In the end), after some minor problems, but nothing that some googling  could’nt resolve.

Today I needed to install drivers and software for a new Laser printer so having placed the disk into the cd tray and closed it waited for the install to begin  -  NOTHING happened and  checking under My Computer discovered that the cdrom icon had gone! (So how am I to install software)? I powered down and re-booted but still nothing – I checked again in the Bios and it appeared , along with an external drive I had connected but win7 was not seeing it, nor was it displaying icons for either player.

I ran some disk utilities and a couple of disk scans to see if I could locate any problems and sure enough after some four hours found a problem with a registery entry, either it was broken - or worse, a virus!

This was certainly not the sort of problem I’d encountered with any win installation as  cdroms are normally one of the first things to load up under “Win”, I recall early Linux systems had major cdrom issues but they had long vanished.

A re-install from the win7 disk at least proved it fired up ok, but did not help my cause –  discovered that one “Fix” that appeared on more than one forum was to go into the “Registry Editor” and find an entry for the cdrom section – It’s a bit involved so have included the link here it seems that certain software adds 3rd party cdrom filters on your system and places an entry in the registery as was the case on this system, and disables access to any cdroms on your system be they built in or external USB – it’s probably nothing new but I’d not experienced this before – Having made the necessary deletion in my case (lower filter) re-booted and all the connected drives appeared like magic, imagine my relief as in the months gone have accumulated a whole bunch of files and information I really do need  right now – I had visions of re-formatting and installing Linux again !

I hope I’ve seen the last of that problem ! 


  1. I think these are the problems we will always have with Windows, no matter how they try to prevent it. I had the same problem years ago with Windows XP, and at the same computer it suddenly didn't see my wireless card anymore. After installing Linux everything showed up again without any problems. The only problem I had on my current computer with Vista was a disabled videocard after a update, luckely it was easy to solve. 73, Bas

  2. I too have had my share of Win troubles I do not have Win7 on any of my machines just Vista and XP. Fortunately for me my son is an MIT computer science engineering grad. So any troubles with the computers go his way and are solved in no time. We do have 3 Mac machines which are up to this point trouble free. My son only uses Linux but just not the software support out there for ham radio related stuff.

  3. Hi Bas - Huh! computers..... but we rely on them "Daily", I had not seen this before, it was risky going into the registery but it solved my problem - same for vista as well. It was throwing up an error 19 - cheers for now and good luck for the new year 2011.

    73 Peter


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