davidedney123

Inserting a disc causes PC to stutter

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Hi

I'll be extremely grateful if anyone can answer this simple question. Why is it that on any PC, no matter how manly, putting a CD in an optical drive causes the PC to become unresponsive for a couple of seconds?

I am using a Dual Xeon 3.2GHz system, and I fail to see why this happens.

Before anybody suggests it, yes I am sure that all drivers are current, the drive isn't boned and DMA is on. This happens on EVERY PC running Windows, no matter what combination of hardware. Some optical drives cause the freeze to last for longer. With my Pioneer DVR-A09 it lasts an absolute age when you put in a blank DVD. My question is why does this happen.

Cheers,

Dave

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What version of windows are you running? Are you using a controller card? Motherboard BIOS latest? How long is your ATA Cable, any longer than 18 inches, is the cable for your DVDRW also 80 conductor? Are there any available firmware updates for the Pioneer Burner?

Strange, doesn't happen to the P4's w/ASUS MB's, 256-512MB RAM and Pioneer DVD Burners running XP from what I recall. My PIII 1.2GHz Socket 370 doesn't do it either with it's SONY DL Burner or my PIII 850 Slot 1 w/Aopen (Acer) DL DVD Burner. That's strange . . . .

Edited by hellyh72

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guess I'm lucky enough not to have this feature then (In Windows) . . . .

203537[/snapback]

Everyone has it, to different extents. Unless you don't have an optical drive, or somehow get Windows to not bother reading from it (turning off auto insert notification probably does the trick).

Basically Windows checks the CD/DVD drives for any media every few seconds (possibly even more often). While the drives are attempting to recognise the disc inserted, they do not respond to requests from Windows. It is during this period that Windows, practically, does bugger all and waits. I think that's what you're reffering to, davidedney123.

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Sorry for the double (or some might say triple) post...

The reason different drives cause the system to freeze longer is simply due to the fact that different drives are faster or slower at recognising the discs when inserted. I do believe this explains (fully) what you seem to be experiencing, but if anyone else has any suggestions please don't hesitate to make them.

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No, I promise you I don't have that problem . . . . Even double checked today just to verify and in Win2K PIII Slot 850MHz w/512MB RAM, Promise TX2/100 card and AOpen DL DVD/R, inserted a CD, didn't do it at all while I was even surfing the internet and in Microsoft Word XP at the same time (never stuttered or hanged for any amount of time), was actually going to wepages, never slowed down once. Sure enough if you click on my computer the disc is shown there, you can access it, auto notification is not disabled either. I think just certain configurations/setups may be prone to do it more and/or there are other varying factors. However, I know for a fact certain (usually OEM) LG and Samsung drives and such can cause a system to hang for a good amount of time (I've experienced that before) when servicing other people's systems as a tech.

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Hi

I've seen it on a lot of systems, and it is very dependent upon the optical drive. Sometimes it's only a fraction of a second stall, on other drives it can be a couple of seconds. I believe it is only Explorer that's doing it.

I suspected it was something like windows waiting for the drive to respond, but I am at a loss as to why it has such a crippling effect on Explorer - can't it just wait in the background?

The worst thing to do is to insert a blank CD and then straight away start Nero - the whole PC just sits there being unresponsive until the drive has finished it's stuff.

For those who asked, the particular system I'm tormenting at the moment is a dual Xeon 3.2 on a Supermicro X5DAL-TG2 (E7505). Optical drives are connected to the motherboards IDE ports. All drivers are the latest. As I said, however, this happens to a greater or lesser extent on every machine I have ever used. Odd thing is, it isn't always consistent on the same machine.

Dave

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I was discussing this with a friend, and we decided this is the single most infuriating thing a PC can do. I can tolerate a PC being unresponsive (just) if it's doing some serious work, but when it's because of something like putting a CD in the drive it makes me want to kick the damned thing around the room.

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Internet explorer and Microsoft word should not get affected, it's only Windows Explorer that does.

203550[/snapback]

Not necessarily true, they use windows explorer and system resources, if the system hangs (or stutters as you refer it) your system will hang . . . .

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I remember my SCSI optical drives did not bog down the OS as much as IDE when running 9x, but on XP there is no difference as they both lag, with the Plextor SCSI drives being the worst. I do know the firmware of the Plextors have more read retries than usual so Windows may keep polling the drive after it reports a disc but hasn't read it yet.

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guess I'm lucky enough not to have this feature then (In Windows) . . . .

203537[/snapback]

Everyone has it, to different extents. Unless you don't have an optical drive, or somehow get Windows to not bother reading from it (turning off auto insert notification probably does the trick).

Basically Windows checks the CD/DVD drives for any media every few seconds (possibly even more often). While the drives are attempting to recognise the disc inserted, they do not respond to requests from Windows. It is during this period that Windows, practically, does bugger all and waits. I think that's what you're reffering to, davidedney123.

203538[/snapback]

Actually, when disk is inserted, the drives perform some basic disk operations, then sends out an event to the OS through interrupt. The OS process the event and so on, which has higher priority than normal tasks, and thus cause a small hang on the system.

Therefore, the duration of the delay is really dependent on the optical drive, CPU, and all system resource as a whole.

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Did anyone try disabling auto insert notification like one of the poster suggested?

Your PC will slow down if you have that enabled. I use both Win98SE and XP with no slow down.

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Even if that is disabled, it will only delay the lag until you click the drive in Explorer. Unless you frequently insert discs without using them.

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Even if that is disabled, it will only delay the lag until you click the drive in Explorer.  Unless you frequently insert discs without using them.

203591[/snapback]

OK. What's the point of that?

The CD needs to be read when you use it. It's unavoidable.

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It would probably be a good idea for Explorer to read the TOC of the CD in background, in a non-blocking thread, once the disc is inserted, and then to keep it cached to prevent further lag when the disc gets accessed... That said, the drive itself could do that too, with reasonable firmware.

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It would probably be a good idea for Explorer to read the TOC of the CD in background, in a non-blocking thread, once the disc is inserted, and then to keep it cached to prevent further lag when the disc gets accessed... That said, the drive itself could do that too, with reasonable firmware.

203682[/snapback]

The same should apply to network connections and the interface should *never* block. Actually, it should apply to HDDs too.

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Actually, when disk is inserted, the drives perform some basic disk operations, then sends out an event to the OS through interrupt. The OS process the event and so on, which has higher priority than normal tasks, and thus cause a small hang on the system.

Therefore, the duration of the delay is really dependent on the optical drive, CPU, and all system resource as a whole.

203580[/snapback]

Reading a disk is not CPU intensive. Hence, any delays you experience are caused by blocking somewhere, either in drivers, kernel or apps.

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Microsoft should have just prevented you from clicking the CD drives in explorer and preventing explorer from attempting to access the drives FAT / CDFS until the drive with the disc is ready.

In my opinion its only the file manager that freezes on modern OS's while it is open when you have the drive selected or the directory open from a previous disc session, solution : Close the directory tree and deselect the cdrom drive.

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Actually, when disk is inserted, the drives perform some basic disk operations, then sends out an event to the OS through interrupt. The OS process the event and so on, which has higher priority than normal tasks, and thus cause a small hang on the system.

Therefore, the duration of the delay is really dependent on the optical drive, CPU, and all system resource as a whole.

203580[/snapback]

Reading a disk is not CPU intensive. Hence, any delays you experience are caused by blocking somewhere, either in drivers, kernel or apps.

203688[/snapback]

Read my msg carefully. Where is the implication of "cpu intensive" coming from?

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Actually, when disk is inserted, the drives perform some basic disk operations, then sends out an event to the OS through interrupt. The OS process the event and so on, which has higher priority than normal tasks, and thus cause a small hang on the system.

Therefore, the duration of the delay is really dependent on the optical drive, CPU, and all system resource as a whole.

203580[/snapback]

Reading a disk is not CPU intensive. Hence, any delays you experience are caused by blocking somewhere, either in drivers, kernel or apps.

203688[/snapback]

Read my msg carefully. Where is the implication of "cpu intensive" coming from?

203705[/snapback]

The 'higher priority' and the 'thus cause a small hang' bits.

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