How to Solve CD Drive Problems in Your Laptop


Folks who deal with DVDs or CDS on their laptops know about this common error and may have been a headache for them. There may be many reasons for this haphazardness in DVD drive like upgrading your system, loose power connection, corrupt or missing drives, or anything else. Sometimes you may see an Exclamation mark (!) or Question Mark (?) next to the device in Device Manager, sometimes it appears with error codes such as 31, 34, and 41 or sometimes it just vanishes completely from My Computer suddenly.

Here are some codes you should know about

Code 19:

Windows can’t open this device as its configuration information is damaged or incomplete.

Code 31:

The device is not working properly as the drivers can’t be loaded.

Code 32:

A driver for this device is disabled.

Code 39:

Windows can’t load the drivers for this device.

Code 41:

Windows successfully loaded the drivers but can’t find the device.

If you have any of these error codes, exclamation mark or question mark, then try these manual methods to fix “CD Drive is not showing up issue“:

These methods require changes in the Registry files. Registry Files are a part of the database that stores all the low-level settings of the OS.

If you have installed a new CD/DVD drive, then it might not show instantly. For this you need to perform a scan:

  1. Open Run command by pressing Windows Key +R
  2. Type “devmgmt.msc”. Press Enter.
  3. Right-Click and select “Scan for Hardware Changes“.
  4. Wait for the refreshed list.

Your newly installed CD/DVD Driver should appear on the list now. If you can’t see it, then follow next step.

Step 1:

The first step you need to do is to simply update the drivers. It may happen that the drivers are outdated or corrupted.

  1. Click Windows Key +R to open Run Dialog Box.
  2. Type “msc” to open Device Manager.
  3. Locate “DVD/CD-ROM Drivers” from the list.
  4. Double Click to expand.
  5. Select the first drive and Right-Click on it. Select “Update” option.
  6. Select “Automatic” option for letting it search on its own.
  7. If there’s an update available from the manufacturer’s site, it will automatically install it.
  8. Restart the laptop after installation.

Now look under “My Computer” section to check whether the CD/DVD icon is available again. If not, then continue to next step:


Step 2:

Before commencing, make sure you have a backup registry for restoration and you’re logged in as administrator. This method is used when there’s error in Registry entries and hence requires deleting the corrupted entry.

  1. Press Windows key + R to open Run dialog box.
  2. Type “regedit” in the Run dialog box to open Registry Editor. Don’t input quotes. You may be asked for a password. Enter the admin password. And press Allow.
  3. Registry Editor will open. Now go to the left pane and double-click on HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE.
  4. Under the same tab, find “System” folder. Double Click it.
  5. Locate and double click “Current Control Set”.
  6. Find and Double Click “Control” under it.
  7. Same way find and double click “Class” under “Control”.
  8. Look for {4D36E965-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318} under it.
  9. You would probably find more than one such copy of the key mentioned one after other.
  10. You need to simply click on each one of them until you find “LowerFilters” and “UpperFilters” on the right pane. If you can’t find it, skip to Step 2.
  11. Right click “LowerFilters” and delete it.
  12. Likewise, delete the “UpperFilters” too.
  13. Exit the Registry Editor.
  14. Restart the computer.

Now you should be able to see the CD/DVD drive in the Laptop.

Continue to next step if the issue is not solved.

Step 3:

Use this method if you can’t find “LowerFilters” or “UpperFilters” keys.

  1. Follow the same steps as above mentioned in Step 1 from 1 to 3.
  2. Find “System” folder under “Current Controller Set”.
  3. Double Click “Service” folder.
  4. Double Click “atapi” folder.
  5. Now create a new key under this folder.
  6. Click on Edit>New>Key
  7. Name it as “Controller 0”.
  8. On the Right Pane, Right Click and select New>DWORD (32 bit) value. Name it as “EnumDevice1”.
  9. To modify its value, right click on EnumDevice1 and click on Modify. Under Value Data tab, set value to 1.
  10. Close Registry Editor.
  11. Restart the laptop.

CD/DVD drive should now be visible.

If you still can’t use this step, use next step.

Step 4:

If you find it difficult to locate and change the key value, then change it using Command prompt. Open Command Prompt as admin only.

  1. Press Window key + R
  2. Type “cmd”.
  3. Type the following command:

reg.exe add “HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\atapi\Controller0” /f /v EnumDevice1 /t REG_DWORD /d 0x00000001

  1. Save and exit.
  2. Restart Laptop.

Use next step if you still get the error.

Step 5:

This requires you to update or uninstall the driver. Hence, make sure you have a copy of drivers. You can search for it on the internet from the manufacturer’s site. You need the correct model number for it.

  1. Press Windows key + R to open Run dialog box.
  2. Type “msc”. Press Enter.
  3. Expand “DVD/CD-ROM drives“. Right-click and select Uninstall.
  4. After all the drivers are removed, right click and select “Scan for Hardware Changes”.
  5. Drivers will be automatically installed.

Another method you can try out is to create your own registry scripts. We do not recommend this one as this can lead to permanent changes. You can find many hacked registry scripts online depending on the model and OS of your model. These files will be in compressed format. Hence, you have to extract them and you’ll have a ready-made Registry Script for your laptop. Then run and save the changes to fix issue “CD Drive Not Showing in Laptop“. Reboot your laptop and check if the CD/DVD drive shows up. If you’ve tried that, you can try out “CD emulator” that creates virtually cloned CD/DVD drives on Windows. Not quite sure about its reliability, but many have used it to fake the CD/DVD drives and have successfully solved the issue “CD Drive is not showing on the laptop”.

Conclusion: CD/DVD can be damaged any time, but it doesn’t mean that the data stored on disk is gone forever. There are so many CD/DVD data recovery tools available that can easily recover data from unrecognized CD/DVD like Stellar Phoenix CD DVD recovery software.

Author Bio: -I am Computer expert and Windows Data Recovery Specialist at Stellar Data Recovery with over 3 years of experience. Share my knowledge and expertise over different media channels from time to time or as soon as find a new one.

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