My CD drive was running perfectly until I installed a utility to RIP audio. It's called ExactAudioCopy, and I've used it in the past. It ripped one cd perfectly and then the CD device was no longer recognized by the system. Before ripping the CD, it ran its own uitlity to check the performance of the drive and perhaps stored that somewhere.
I've uninstalled that utility, but have the same problem, which is:
The CD drive IS recognized and works perfectly in SAFE MODE ONLY. As soon as a normal boot is done, the drive does not show anywhere, including the device manager. Attempts to "add new hardware" don't work. At wits end (several hours trying things) I ran the XP automatic repair and reinstall, and updated from Microsoft again. Reinstalled all the motherboard drivers and devices. STILL, it doesn't see the drive except in safe mode. Note that I booted from the CD drive and reinstalled Windows from it!
Scanned with all kinds of anti virus and adware. Uninstalled the drive in safe mode, hoping that the normal boot would find it. No way. Reinstalled it in safe mode. Still not recognized under normal boot.
Clearly the drive works, but it appears that something is keeping it out of commission. This sort of thing is why I have so much less hair than a few years ago.
Help, help, help.