CD-ROM drive is a device, which plays CD-ROM and supports read and write operations on the CD-ROM. CD-ROM stands for Compact Disk – Read Only Memory. It can be either internal or external. CD-ROM drives are used in music players, Desktop PCs, Laptops, Servers etc. They are used for booting up PCs, CD installation etc.
External CD-ROM drive is connected to the system through USB port. The speeds of drives would be 24x, 52x etc. Higher speeds result in more noise, vibration etc. CD-ROM drive employs an infrared laser diode (780nm). Projecting laser beam onto the disc using opto-electronic tracking, which detects the reflection or scattering of the beam. Sony and Philips developed the CD technology in late 1970s.
Terms Related to CD-ROM Drive:
Data on disc is a series of pits; the space between pits is lands. Projecting laser on reflective surface of the disc, the patterns i.e., the reflected light from pits and lands are read by a photo detector and are decoded by the processor thereby converting them as a useful data and transferred wherever it is necessary. If the speed of disc increases, then the transfer rate of data increases. There are three different kinds of speed ratings for CD-RW namely, writes-once, re-write and read only. Data storage and retrieval is faster in CD-ROMs than magnetic tapes.
CD-ROMs and other disc drives connect to computer through interfaces like IDE, parallel, SATA, PCMCIA (PC Card), SCSI, USB etc.
Problems caused by some of the factors to CD-ROM drives and the ways to overcome them:
Cleaning CD-ROM drive
Cleaning keeps the drive away from many of the problems. Hence, it is always advisable to clean the CD-ROM drive. Normally, dust enters through the air pockets around the CD tray. Dust covers the critical components and may decrease the performance. Cleaning with care is important as it contains very sensitive components. Laser lens cleaner is one of the solutions to clean the laser lens. Laser lens cleaner with liquid and laser lens cleaner-dry type, are the two types of laser lens cleaner.
Different manufacturers of CD-ROM drives