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I decided to join 2006 and buy Oblivion. Unfortunately, in true Bethesda style, I can't even install the thing. When I plop in the DVD it doesn't appear (i.e. it isn't being recognized as a disc).

The Facts:

  • Other DVDs work fine (I installed Portal 2 a few days ago)
  • Other drives work fine (The disc was read with no issues on my friend's computer)

In other words it isn't the drive, it isn't the disc. It's some sort of combination. I'm honestly stumped.

The Details:

  • Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit
  • Drive is: NEC DVD_RW ND-3550A ATA
  • Driver is 6.1.7600.16385

Does anyone have any ideas?

share|improve this question
This won't answer the question, but just so you can play the game, can you use your friend's computer to make an ISO and install it using that? – fideli May 13 '11 at 0:27
Good call fideli -- I'll do that in the mean time. Still, it's quite a mystery. – slifty May 13 '11 at 0:30
It won't let you explore the disc by right clicking it either? – Blomkvist May 13 '11 at 0:41
Correct Blomkvist -- it is as if no disc was inserted at all. Any attempt to view the information causes the drive to be ejected and Windows to say "Please insert a disc" – slifty May 13 '11 at 0:42
Not sure if this could be a cause, but when creating the iso (using ImgBurn) I got an error warning me that one of the files on the disc exceeded the ISO standard. Stupid Bethesda making discs with files that are bigger than the 4GB limit. Probably not the cause but who knows. – slifty May 13 '11 at 0:48

Even if all DVD media are supposed to be the same, this is not always the case, especially for DVD-+RW. For this specific device (NECT ND-3550A), there is an extensive list of supported media on NEC support website. Such compatibility problems can be overcomed sometimes with a firmware update.

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Great suggestion and thanks for the list link. I checked the firmware upgrade and my version was indeed old (1.0.5 vs 1.0.7) but unfortunately the upgrade did not solve the problem. snaps fingers – slifty May 31 '11 at 2:18

This is most likely becuase your DVD drive does not support a DVD standard e.g. DVD+, DVD- etc.

I have had similar problems in the past with some of the older laptop DVD drives.

share|improve this answer <-- the product itself (I bought it in 2006). I'm not seeing the list of standards supported, however. I'll try with another OS, but if that doesn't work I bet you're right. – slifty May 13 '11 at 18:59
@slifty Have you tried the drive in any other machines? – Peter Manton May 13 '11 at 19:02
DVD "types" typically apply only to recordable media. My understanding is that all DVD-ROMs are created equal. I'm standing by to be corrected by someone with more knowledge in this area :) – Kyle Smith May 18 '11 at 14:45

Is this available for digital distribution? Maybe Steam or Direct2Drive? You'd have to buy the game again, but you wouldn't have to find a way to get the DVD to work. Maybe you can sell your copy to your friend?

share|improve this answer
I appreciate the suggestion, but I'd like to avoid it. I got a great deal on this ($6) and would like to avoid the $20 it costs on Steam and D2D. – slifty May 31 '11 at 2:03
I figured as much. The suggestion was intended to be a "last resort" in the event you couldn't get the game to work. – Doltknuckle May 31 '11 at 15:01

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