TSSTcorp CDRW/DVD problems? Post here!!!

If you have had problems (even if they have been resolved) with a TSSTcorp CDROM/CDRW/DVD/DVDRW drive, post here.

I am currently dealing with a faulty TSSTcorp CDRW/DVD combo drive model #462C on a 3 month old Inspiron 600m. It has only worked properly about 5 times. Its hardly been used and will not read most discs on the first try, most not at all. Reinstallation does nothing, no update drivers or firmware is available that I can find.

I've been all over these boards and I have repeatedly seen issues with these drives. I believe they are faulty due to manufacturing defects or possibly firmware issues (as no firmware has been made available for them) probably a mass amount of them (as I have also seen other boards with comments on non-Dell laptops about TSST drives) and it is likely the manufacturer is aware of this.

I am curious as to how many people have experienced this on their Dell. Just browsing here, it looks like a ridiculous amount.

I in no way intend to point this finger at Dell, but if say, 30% or more of these drives are faulty, its not fair to the consumer to deal with it.

Thanks for your time and happy posting!!
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84 Replies

Re: TSSTcorp CDRW/DVD problems? Post here!!!

The more I troubleshoot this, the more it appears that the problem is primarily with burnt CD-Rs. I have also had the issue with burnt CD-RW's but do not seem to have any trouble erasing those disc's or burning to CD-R's or CD-RW's.
I have NOT tried burnt DVDs. I have had NO trouble with the same CDR/W's in ANY other drive.

This does periodically affect commercial (production) CD-ROMs & audio CD's, but not as often as CDR's. About 1/2 the time a factory disc is read fine. The rest of the time, as with burnt CD's it simply does not register the disc after trying for minutes to read it.

I have just tried reinstalling my IDE controller. This didn't seem to resolve the issue entirely, however the first couple of audio CD's were read just fine, but the first CD-R was NOT. The 2nd CD-R (which only had about 30MB of pics on it) WAS read but it took over a minute to load and was audibly noisy, appears to have read the disc 5 or six times before it spun correctly.

My guess is these drives have faulty stabilization for the laser. The laser must be seated perfectly or it will not function correctly, though obviously a small window of error must be allowed. This would explain why burnt discs vs. commercial discs seem to err more often, as the burning accuracy would not be quite as good on a home-burnt disc as opposed to factory/commercial. It is also possible the drive motor for the laser is not geared/aligned correctly, resulting in incorrect movement of the laser, though I doubt it would be able to read any disc if this were the case.

The other possibility is a firmware issue, however this will usually cause write errors when burning from CD to HDD and I haven't experienced issues with the drive IF the disc IS read correctly, i.e. once it registers the disc it seems to do fine.

Last but not least, I HAVE cleaned the laser. This did nothing.
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Re: TSSTcorp CDRW/DVD problems? Post here!!!

Just found driver/firmware update

Here: http://support.dell.com/support/downloads/type.aspx?c=us&cs=19&l=en&s=dhs&SystemID=PWE_PNT_XEO_1750&os=LE30&osl=en&deviceid=7963

Will post back results
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Re: TSSTcorp CDRW/DVD problems? Post here!!!

Unfortunately this firmware update is a dos Flash program....which means you have to use a boot disk or bootable Memory Key.
Unfortunatly for us laptop users that probably means we will have to pray that the only bootable device we have besides the hard drive, which is the CD-ROM that is messed up in the first place, works when we boot to it.
This is horrible support in my opinion.  I receive no notification of this, and if I weren't computer savy, I wouldn't have a clue as to how to resolve this.
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Re: TSSTcorp CDRW/DVD problems? Post here!!!

THE ABOVE FIRMWARE FLASH WILL ONLY WORK *IF* you have the specific model:
****************new info - see latest post @11/20 8:19pm
TSL462C DE04

My drive is TSL462C DE01.

I found that Samsung supports some drives made under the brand "TSST" (Toshiba Samsung)
however, this drive (DE01) is NOT supported.

Dell also does NOT appear to have firmware support, so this is NOT an option.

When I go through Dell online support, under Drivers & Downloads, this drive is NOT an option.

I'm started to get mad.

Message Edited by Clarpet on 11-20-2005 07:19 PM

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Re: TSSTcorp CDRW/DVD problems? Post here!!!

You started a thread and asked for comments but you seem to be doing a fine job talking to yourself. ;-)

Just to give you some company, here are my comments on this brand of drive:

I received my i6000 in July with the TSL-462 and immediately had problems with the drive not spinning up, not recognizing factory pressed CD's and causing errors in Dell Media Exchange when trying to read DVD's.

It was replaced with another one that was just as bad. I sent the replacement back, too. I now have a Hitachi-LG brand GC-C4243 which operates perfectly.

I have had many problems with Samsung SN324 and TSL462 drives and I don't ever want another one in any of my machines. I wish Dell would stop buying them because they are just too unreliable in my opinion. After all, mass production optical drive technology is over 10 years old and Samsung still can't get it right. Who needs their junk?


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Re: TSSTcorp CDRW/DVD problems? Post here!!!

Well, I have had ONE drive thus far - Yep, the TSSTcorp TS-L462. DVDs would not play on my original - afer 30 minutes or so, the video would break up awfully. This new one seems better, but Dell might regret having provided a free extended warranty when I purchased the system. I'm going to watch this thing like a hawk :-)
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Re: TSSTcorp CDRW/DVD problems? Post here!!!

In my search for firmware for this drive, I came upon some steps for flashing it that were somewhat unconventional.

As I stated above, if you have the drive I have (good chance if its from Dell) you can't use the firmware that is widely available for this model, if it is ver DE01. If its DE02-3 you should be kosher.

The firmware is supposed to fix "intermittent" media reading issues, among other things.

If you want to Flash your Dell TS-L462C DE01 to ver. DE04 I suggest this [very weird, if not effective] way to make it happen.

I claim no responsibility if your CDROM becomes a man-killing death machine and sets fire to your small town as a result of your Flash experience, or if it just breaks.
I also have no idea what this may do to your warranty, but considering Dell is the source of the Firmware.....

Go here:

Just extract the DE04.BIN file.

Then go here:

COMBO(slim) should already be selected, as should TS-L462C. If not, then select them, this will take to download the firmware installer from Samsung.

You will see a "ZIP" icon at the right hand side with the word "File" above it. you can click on that or the line that says TS-L462C China OEM

Now here's the catch: The installer that Dell gives you will NOT recognize your drive if you have Ver DE01. The installer that Samsung gives you will tell you the firmware is NOT compatible. However, once you download the zip from Samsung, extract the file named "SFDNWIN.exe" (which incidently is the same program Dell gives you only they give you a DOS-only version. Who knows?

Run SFDNWIN. Click the button on the top left that has a folder symbol. Find the file you extracted earlier called DE04.bin. Select this, click Open. You should see your CD-ROM full drive name in the Drive field, the same thing (minus the DE01) under model name.

Old Version should say DE01
New Version should say DE04

Now click the 2nd button on the top left corner and badda bing, firmware flash to DE04, the latest firmware for this drive.

This was a complete accident that I happened upon this, however, the drive does seem to be working correctly so far, but we'll give it a day or so and see, as not all CD's have given me issues.

I'll keep u posted.
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Re: TSSTcorp CDRW/DVD problems? Post here!!!

Okay. I have flashed the drive. I have had a few CD's work and a few that haven't.

It doens't seem to be any better. There is also little to know support on this yet on Dell's part as the only firmware THEY have provided wasn't installable for my drive with out some fanagling, AND WASN'T PROVIDED EXCEPT FOR ***BUSINESS*** CUSTOMERS.

In looking through the Dell Downloads & Drivers section, under those provided for the Inspiron 600m, UNDER MY SPECIFIC SERVICE TAG, I have also noticed ONLY the following drives/devices are listed:

Dell 128MB USB Memory Key
Dell 64MB USB Memory Key
HLDS GCC-4240N 24X Slim Combo
HLDS GCR-8240N slim 24X CD-ROM
M-Systems HS 128M and 64M USB Memory Key
NEC ND-5100A slim 4X DVD+RW
NEC ND-6500A Slim 8X DVD+/-RW
Panasonic UJDA360 Slim 24X CDRW
Panasonic UJDA740 24X Slim Combo
Philips SDVD6004 2X Slim DVD+RW
QSI SBW 242 Slim 24X Combo
Roxio Easy CD Creator 5.3.4
Samsung SN-324S Slim CDRW/DVD ROM
Sony CRX830E 24/24/24X Slim Combo
Sony DW-D56A slim 8x DVD+/-RW
Toshiba SD-C2612 8X Slim DVD

My drive isn't there in case you didn't notice. There are multiple drives that could have been chosen in place of the combo drive they gave me, I'm not sure why they picked the oldest version of one they DON'T support. This worries me.

After much deliberation, hard work and extensive research I have finally come upon a series of steps as a solution to this problem. Proceed at your own risk:

1) Right click on the Green Arrow Box icon on the Notification Area, choose the Safely Remove Hardware option.

2) Once the box pops up, select Stop. Once stopped...

3) Press the release switch to remove your drive. This is spring-loaded and will pop out a 'handle' you can use to pull it out. Make sure you haven't left any CD's in the drive.

4) Get in your car, bring your drive with you.buy a gun or bring one with if you have one.

5) Take your CD/DVD device out to a quite place on a dirt road and shoot it multiple times to put it out of its misery. It is now as useful as it will ever be.

6) Go home, drink a bottle of bourbon and then call Dell Support and give them some encouraging words.

'Nuff Said.
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Re: TSSTcorp CDRW/DVD problems? Post here!!!

So are we to assume you just flashed the TSSP drive with a Samsung firmware or simply used its flash utility?
If the answer is Samsung firmware, congratulations you just voided the warranty on the drive.
Now you can go out and get a good drive at your cost.

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