It sounds like after a recent iTunes update you are no longer able to burn a disc with iTunes. I wanted to recommend a couple of things. Try performing a Safe Boot, and also resetting your SMC on the computer, in that order.
Mac OS X: What is Safe Boot, Safe Mode?
Starting up in Safe Mode
To start up into Safe Mode (to Safe Boot), follow these steps.
- Be sure your Mac is shut down.
- Press the power button.
- Immediately after you hear the startup tone, hold the Shift key.
The Shift key should be held as soon as possible after the startup tone, but not before the tone.
- Release the Shift key when you see the gray Apple logo and the progress indicator (looks like a spinning gear).
After the logo appears, you should see a progress bar during startup. This indicates that your computer is performing a directory check as part of Safe Mode.
To leave Safe Mode, restart your computer without holding any keys during startup.
Intel-based Macs: Resetting the System Management Controller (SMC)
- Shut down the computer.
- Unplug the computer's power cord.
- Wait fifteen seconds.
- Attach the computer's power cord.
- Wait five seconds, then press the power button to turn on the computer.
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Thanks for the update RogerOut!
I was also thinking that perhaps a piece of software may be taking control of the drive. I would try disabling any log in items and then restart and see if that helps:
Permanently prevent an item from opening automatically when you log in
- Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, and then click Users & Groups.
- Select your user account, and then click Login Items.
- Select the name of the item you want to prevent from opening automatically at login.
- Click Delete below the list on the right.
From: OS X Mountain Lion: Open items automatically when you log in
If the issue still is not resolved then I would like to thank you for using the Apple Support Community. Due to the nature of your issue you may find more information by using another one of Apple's support resources - https://expresslane.apple.com/GetproductgroupList.action.
Ah, since this CD drive issue was not the only new oddity (the others being very subtle), I re-installed the 10.8.5 combo update and the 10.8.5 supplement and that seems to have resolved the problem with the CD drive and iTunes.
I also noticed a lot of disk permission errors in the iTunes.app package, mainly in the language packs. Disk Utility says it repairs them but with a subsequent scan, they're still there. Reminds me of something similar in MacOS from a few years back.
Anyway, thanks for the ideas and help. Looks like things are back to normal here.