13 Replies Latest reply: Jul 2, 2011 7:23 AM by Wolfmont
Wolfmont Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

I have a 2007 Intel iMac 20 with the superdrive.  Late yesterday the drive started acting a little flakey.  Now, I can't eject a DVD from the superdrive.


It tries to cycle, but it sounds like it hits something, and it remounts the DVD.  I've tried all the standard tricks (ejecting from Disk Utility, using the keyboard CD eject button, the mouse while booting, etc., etc.  It appears there is a physical reason for the DVD to stop ejecting, but for the life of me I can't figure out what it is.


Why in the name of all that is common sense didn't the stupid fracking engineers put in a manual DVD/CD release button, like all NON-Mac computers have, so I could at least pop out the DVD with a paper clip?  Moronic choice not to do that!


Other than cracking open the case, is there any other way to free the DVD and get it out?  I'm frustrated because I had the iMac up for sale, found someone interested, and suddenly this problem cropped up.  I'm a nearly-two-hour drive from the nearest apple store.

iMac, Mac OS X (10.6.7)
  • babowa Level 7 Level 7 (27,405 points)

    You might have tried this already: shut down Mac. Pick it up and turn it with the CD slot down and then gently shake it to see if that'll make the CD fall out.

  • EVO67 Level 2 Level 2 (305 points)

    Did you try the "drutil tray eject" command in Terminal?

  • Wolfmont Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    @babowa--yes, I tried turning the iMac sideways, upside down, etc.  None of that works.


    @EVO67--yes, I had tried that, but the "drutil tray eject" or "drutil eject" commands don't work either. It is not an issue with the drive not getting the message that it is supposed to eject the DVD.  It's that the drive tries to eject and fails, as though something is blocking the DVD from exiting.

  • babowa Level 7 Level 7 (27,405 points)

    Well, if it is indeed a mechanical problem, your best friend will be a Genius - make an appointment at your nearest Genius Bar; I'm sure they'll know what to do (and possibly fix if necessary).

  • Wolfmont Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I'm sure they will know at the Genius Bar, but as I said, I'm quite a ways from the nearest Apple store.  And I have also heard that repair/replacement of a superdrive by Apple approaches $400 or more.  That is not in my budget at this time.

  • EVO67 Level 2 Level 2 (305 points)

    OK, I'm going to make an absolutely stupid recommendation, but it's based on real life experience: I recently recorded more than 1000 CDs in Apple Lossless, of which at least 100 refused to leave the Superdrive of my iMac. Most of them could be salvaged by the usual commands and actions, but around 20 didn't.


    What you need is just a very thin pincer to pull the DVD out. If you have a girlfriend, obtaining one should not be a problem   Note that you might destroy your DVD in the process.



  • babowa Level 7 Level 7 (27,405 points)

    Well, the diagnosis is free and they may just be able to get the DVD out without cost to you. If they determine that the drive is bad, I'd suggest getting a sturdy external burner - they are less finicky, work with more media, and mine has been much more  reliable - I rarely use the internal.

  • wagnerministries Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    What brand/model external drive do you rec Babowa?


    How do you hook it up to your i-Mac?


    I have an older DVD burner that I wondered if it would work with Tiger OS-how could you "see" the DVD form the i-Mac display?

  • babowa Level 7 Level 7 (27,405 points)

    I have an older version of this:




    Mine is firewire (faster than USB) and it will not show on the desktop - the only way to "see" it is to insert a CD or DVD; you will then get the dialog of what do you want to do with it (because I have my preferences set not to automatically open anything such as iPhoto or whatever, so I have a choice). If it's blank, I just want it to show on the desktop, which it will. I generally use Toast to burn, but you don't need that - now, I do not know about Tiger (that's 10.4) - your profile shows 10.6.7 which is Snow Leopard.

  • wagnerministries Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    thank you babowa!

  • babowa Level 7 Level 7 (27,405 points)

    You're welcome!

  • kingyu Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    @Wolfmont, have you found a way to eject the #$@!! DVD?  I had the same problem, and have figured out a mechanical solution.  Stick the corner of a credit card into the drive slot until you feel a little "door" blocking you from further inserting the credit card.  Keep pressing the credit card against this little "door".  Now try to eject the disc (by pressing Eject key on the keyboard).  Here comes the tricky part.  As soon as the damned drive attempts to push the disc out physically and the disc is coming out of the slot past the little "door", immediately retract the credit card and the disc should be able to continue its journey out.  It might take some practice, but should do the trick.


    Yeah, this is crazy, but until I replace my iMac I'll have to make do with this trick!

  • Wolfmont Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)



    Thanks for the advice, but someone else had passed on a similar trick to me before, and I tried it unsuccessfully. 


    I ended up paying $200 to get a new SuperDrive installed in the iMac, sadly enough.  And I just had to send off my MBP (late 2010) to Cupertino so they can replace the logic board.  That particular model must be jinxed, because I had to have it replaced within three weeks of purchasing it (they sent me a new one) and now the logic board in this one has a problem with the SD card slot--doesn't recognize it.


    And I HATE the new touchpads without a separate button.  They are pieces of crap.  Half the time they don't work properly.  I've had two built that way, and both touchpads are junk.


    I love Macs, but pretty soon the quality and design are going to have to keep up with the rest of the world or my common sense (paying less for a machine that is just as high in quality) is going to overcome my love for Macs, and I'll start buying Sony computers instead.  It took forever for them to recognize that SD cards are de rigeur for a laptop, and when they did it, they obviously didn't do a good job of it.


    Sorry... venting here.  I hate spending money when I shouldn't have to do so.