For about a year, I have happily used my factory preinstalled CD RW/ DVD drive in my Compaq desktop. Last week, I decided it was time to starting burning DVDs so I bought the latest Memorex DVD writer. It is dual mode and can burn double layer DVD9 discs at 16x. I used this drive to burn 10 or so CDs and one DVD successfully over the course of two days. Then, it began to fail. At this point, read access to CDs and DVDs causes the computer to sometimes freeze, but not consistently. I put the old CD RW/DVD drive back into the computer as slave to the new drive and amazingly, now accessing CDs/DVDs in the old drive also sometimes freezes the computer. Everything works fine if nothing is in either drive during bootup and I do not use them.
I expect that this isn't nearly enough information to go on, but as a preliminary question, I want to know how to even diagnose the problem. Full points goes for full solution, but partial points go to even discovering the source of the problem.