[rescue] Bad luck with SCSI cdrom drives

Steve Sandau ssandau at gwi.net
Thu Sep 6 05:26:46 CDT 2007

> I now own 5 SCSI CDROM drives, and only have one Toshiba drive that
> actually works in all of my sun gear. Granted, all of these drives have
> been bought second hand with machines that are typical rescue machines,
> and some of these drives will work up until a point until the sense
> errors start to occur (Yes, SCSI ID and block size has been set
> correctly), but I fear I must come to the conclusion that the technology
> is simply poorly designed, or that older drives struggle to read modern
> CDR media. Perhaps I must learn to ignore all the old warning labels and
> open some drives up to see if I can clean lenses etc. Luckily, most
> machines will netboot fine, and the only real problem child I have is
> freebsd which I haven't managed to successfully netinstall.
> I would like to know if my experience of one out of five working drives
> is atypical for this list?

I have had some luck resurrecting older drives by opening them up and 
cleaning them. I used to only clean the lens, but lately I have been 
paying attention to the little rubber ring/platter/spindle/thing that 
the disk sits on in the drive. It seems that sometimes the problem isn't 
reading the disk, but keeping it spinning at the right speed.

This only works about half the time, but it has worked.


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