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CD Error Fixing - Troubleshooting

An alarming number of Diablo 2 players are experiencing problems with their CDRom drives not being able to read one or more of the game CD’s. Problems range from not recognizing CDs at all, to continual error messages asking for the Play CD to be inserted when it is already in the drive. Below is our combined wisdom on the problem. We will keep updating this page as often as we receive new information. The first thing you need to do is visit Blizzard’s CD Help Page. If that doesn’t help, make yourself a cup of coffee. You are probably going to need it.

In this article we have compiled a range of possible solutions sent in by many many different Dialbo II users.

Alternate Multiplayer Screen Freeze Fix
Timbo has written in with a more eloquent fix for the problem of regular screen freezes when using the automap function on a host machine in a LAN:

When you remove TCP/IP protocol from you network card, guess what? You can host and run your map all day with no problem. I guess it’s just in Diablo 2??? I’ve formatted all three of my systems several times and it’s always the same.

Possible CD Recognition Fix
The Executioner has written in with another possible fix for those getting the “Insert Play Disk” error:

I tried everything at the blizzard tech support, and here, but i finally tried checking my system performance settings again, but i noticed a strange ticked box saying “Disable all 32-bit protected-mode disk drivers”. I clicked and reset my computer, and it works perfect now, i can play on battle.net too. I hope this may help some other people with the same problem.

Go to: Start->Settings->Control Panel System->Performance tab File System->Troubleshooting tab

Multiplayer Screen Freeze Fix
This is not related to CDRom problems, but may help others experiencing frustration when trying to play mulitplayer outside of Battle.net. I recently posted to a Blizzard forum with details of a persistent screen freeze when hosting a TCP/IP game. Others connected to the game had no trouble, but my machine would freeze for about 30 seconds and then run at three times the normal speed for several seconds, presumably to catch up. Of course, in the meantime I had ususally died.

A kind soul replied with the solution, and it turns out to be a simple one - turn off the automap. It means playing blind if you are hosting, but other party members can use the map safely so it’s almost as easy to follow them.

Task Manager Fix
A French reader has written in with a fix utilizing the ability of Windows’ Task Manager to kill off specific applications:

When I launch Diablo II (with the play CD in the drive ), both drives (HD and CDRom) were used, the wait mouse cursor appears and then … nothing ! I wait half a minute and hit CTRL-ALT-DEL to bring the task manager dialog box. Among other processes, there are two named “diabloii” and “game”. I kill the second one (”game”). I am then asked to insert the play CD. I select the retry option and then the game starts. Sometimes, I need to kill the “game” process several times but eventually the game always starts. (Windows98 2ndEd and Diablo II French version if that matters).

Thanks Stephane.

Rebooting the Key
Apparently a previous fix involving the reselection of a CDRom property and then rebooting was actually achieved by the reboot with the Play CD in the CDRom, not the reselection (thanks Joost).

DVD Issues a General Problem?
It seems DVD drives could be a general problem when running Diablo 2:

My copy of Diablo II works fine in DirectDraw mode, however in Direct3d is slows to a crawl. I tried installing it on my other computer, which is an AMD K6-2 450Mhz, on this computer it worked fine in both modes.

The actual hardware/software differences between the 2 computers in negligable (both are running a clean install of Win2k). The only real difference (’cept for the processors/mboards) is that the AMD has a 4x CDROM drive and the other comp. has a Pioneer 10x DVD.

When I swapped the 4x with the DVD, the slow D3d problem moved from one computer to the other. I’m wondering if the DVD drive has some sort of problem with Diablo 2…
Thanks Bob.

Constant Freezes
This isn’t a CDRom problem (as far as I know), but some versions of the game are falling into constant, extended freezes which makes gameplay frustrating and extremely difficult. TSmith wrote in with the following gripe:

I’m getting about 0-22 fps, really pissing me off. It’ll freeze, then try to catch back up to itself by running about 3x the normal speed, causing very much death. It does this quite often, when entering a battle and entering an area to name the major ones. It freezes for about 15 seconds. I have the latest BIOS for my motherboard etc, 96 megs of RAM. I put 256 megs in one of my machines, a pentium III 700, ran a little better, but still very laggy. Please send some news.

I had the same problem during a long TCP/IP game. Gameplay would just freeze every few minutes for up to 30 seconds. When it returned I was either dead (having been killed in the interum), or everything would run at very high speed until the game was presumably back in sync again. The first Diablo used to do the same thing, but not nearly as often and the freezes would only last a few seconds.

After such a long multiplayer gaming session (10 hours straight), I reluctantly have to say that Blizzard have produced some pretty second rate network code - and that is being kind. The second patch, due out any day, will hopefully address some of the problems but I’m betting it will take the next several to fix things entirely. Some people in Australia paid A$100 for a game which at the moment is playing in multiplayer like a pre-alpha demo. There are some fantastic things about D2, but this isn’t good enough and Blizzard deserve some criticism for it.

TNT2 Pro 64 Problems? New Drivers
For those with TNT2 Pro 64 cards who can get the game to run but can’t play it because of video problems (opening menu is all splotchy etc.), try downloading the latest NVidia Detonator drivers from ReactorCritical ( NB: these drivers are more recent than the ones on NVidia’s site).

Reboot With Play Disk In Drive
I found this possible fix while browsing forum posts at Diablo.org:
Personally, I have auto-play on my CD drive turned off. For me, this causes Windows 98 not to recognize the name of the CD. If I attempt to start playing the game with the “Cinematics” disc in and switch to the “Play” disc, Windows and Diablo 2 will still recognize the “Play” disc as the “Cinematics” disc. If Diablo is refusing to accept the “Play” disc, try going into “My Computer.” Hit F5 or “View” -> “Refresh.” Make sure the your “Play” disc comes up as “Playdisc.” If it doesn’t, try rebooting the computer with the “Play” disc in the drive.
-Dacali

DVD Fine Before Patch
Fintan wrote in to say he had no problems with CD detection until he installed the first Blizzard patch. He ended up reinstalling the game and is now playing it unpatched without any problems (well, DVD problems anyhow - let’s see what happens when he gets to the end of Act II :)

Blizzard To The Rescue
A friend of mine who enthusiastically waited the three long years between Diablo and it’s sequel inadvertently killed his motherboard while flashing the bios to try and solve CDRom problems. After replacing the motherboard he went step by step through the suggestions on Blizzard’s help page. The following steps are the ones that worked for him:

- Disable joystick
- Install the Windows 98 Service Pack
- Update sound card drivers
- Goto Start –> Run and type “msconfig”. Look around and see if anything looks wrong.
- Right click on “My Computer” Run and type “msconfig”. Look around and see if anything looks wrong.
- Right click on “My Computer” –> “Device Properties” –> “CDRom” (highlight drive) –> “properties” –> “settings”. Experiment with selecting and deselecting “Sync data transfer” and “DMA”.

Incidentally, Blizzard have updated their Diablo II Realm Status Page with word that the 1.02 patch will be online shortly.

If All Else Fails, Take it Back
As with a previous post, another reader solved his problems by simply returning his copy of the game and replacing it with another.

For me, it was the install disk that didn’t work. I would try to run setup.exe, and the CD would start to spin, then stop. Thinking it might be my computer, I then tried it on 2 of my roommates’ computers. Same exact thing. So I went back to the EB I bought it from, got a new copy, and it worked flawlessly. I assume it is a CD problem, and less of a CDROM drive issue.

Thanks M.

Reselect Windows CDRom Properties
This one sounds like it could be an answer for a quite few people. During his all-too-familiar Windows fumblings while wrestling with CD problems, Kreg reselected a basic setting for his CDRom and voila!:

Here’s a trick i used to get the Diablo CD to stop asking me to insert the Play CD: (works with Win98)

Right click on “My Computer”
Goto “Properties” –> “File System” –> “Performace/CD-ROM”

Now i *know* most people already have “Quad-Speed or better” selected, and i did too…but re-selecting it, applying, and re-starting actually made the game find the CD!!! Believe it or not…ahhh, Windows. Tell people to try this… I reported it to Blizzard Tech support, as well.

Stress (and Beta) Testers Beware
If you participated in the pre-release beta and stress test for Diablo 2, you may find your system has residual Windows registry entries that could cause problems - particulary if you have multiple hard and CDRom drives like Drundel:

I guess you can call this a problem but.. I have 2 hdd and 2 cd-rom drives. I installed from F drive and eveything went fine, until I tried to play. It kept saying please insert play disc… which was in the drive. So for the hell of it I put it in my E drive and worked fine. Both drives are Aopen 48X drives. Some things of note, I was part in the stress test beta and installed D2 from burned iso before my copy came in to babbages, iso copy was installed from E drive? Makes you wonder.

Make Your CDRom Local
Some players have found burning copies of their game CDs solves their problems. It’s also possible that copying CD2 to the Hard Drive and making the CDRom local could help:

Here is the way it’s set up. CD1 and CD3 are 650 MB CD’s. CD2 is a 700 MB CD. You will have to burn/copy the CD2 on 80 minute media. And yes, the CD-ROM drives are not being detected when updating. And your screwed if you have a DVD drive. If you wish to update, goto www.gamecopyworld.com and patch it as instructed. This involves editing your registry to make the CD-ROM drive be seen as local, and copy the contents of CD2 to your Diablo2 directory. The only thing is, do not replace your game.exe. If you do, back it up. Battlenet reads the filesize of the executable and disallows logging in if it’s a cracked(No-CD) version. It’s not necessary to do that anyhow, if you make the CD your local HD, ya? In any case, I hope this helps out some of your readers. That’s it. Take care.

Agitator added aRun and type “msconfig”. Look around and see if anything looks wrong.
- Right click on “My Computer” Run and type “msconfig”. Look around and see if anything looks wrong.
- Right click on “My Computer” –> “Device Properties” –> “CDRom” (highlight drive) –> “properties” –> “settings”. Experiment with selecting and deselecting “Sync data transfer” and “DMA”.

Incidentally, Blizzard have updated their Diablo II Realm Status Page with word that the 1.02 patch will be online shortly.

Delete wnaspi32.dll
Systems Engineer from Delta State University Alan Aguzzi has provided details on a rogue file which could be causing some people problems with CDRom detection:

At one point in time, I was receiving the error about insertion of the Play Disc in the CD-ROM Drive. I have a Hitachi GD2000 DVD Drive and have never experienced problems out of it before. It seems as though the problem began after installing a piece of software which shall remain nameless. To make the software work, “wnaspi32.dll” was copied into the WinNT\System directory (By the way, I’m running Windows 2000 Professional). Anyway, I found that by removing this file, I also removed the Diablo II error. If others have installed any software that also installs this file, removal could be a possible fix.

WARNING: Another reader, Chris, has written in advising against deleting this file, especially if you are running SCSI devices:

This is Adaptec/Microsoft’s ASPI layer driver and can cause major problems with SCSI devices and IDE devices that use the ATAPI interface. Just for fun I deleted this file from my /Windows/System folder and rebooted; the result was my 2 scsi cd-roms were not detected and there were general performance/stability issues (ex. 10k rpm scsi drive lost in sisoft disk benchmark to a 5400rpm ide disk). I have an all SCSI system, but a friend reports after deleting this file, his samsung udma 66 dvd would not play any dvd discs at all and would hang the computer.

Patience Can Be a Virtue
This is really only a desperate work-around, but it’s possible some games which appear to be locking up may actually begin if left for up to 5 minutes:

I get 3 to 4 minute long lockups when going to the loading screen (ie you click the start button and nothing happens - no screen change, no keyboard response [CTRL-ALT-DEL, ALT- TAB, NUMLOCK/CAPSLOCK], no mouse etc etc). The PC appears to be totally dead (except for the CDROM light flashing every few seconds) and then magically the loading screen appears and everything carries on normally.

Anyway, the thought is this - maybe some folks would be having more luck if they waited longer before pressing the reset switch - not that I’m suggesting that this is how it should be of course. I know I spent a hour rebooting before being called away for something else and came back to a nice surprise.

Thanks Suxx.

SCSI CDRom Hit Too
Not even owners of late model SCSI drives are immune from the D2 read problems, as Joel has discovered:

I just want to say it’s not just DVD-ROMs and IDE cd-roms that won’t read the CD’s. I have a Plextor 40x Wide SCSI and it won’t read them. I have to put them in my Plextor 8/20 CD-R. In fact in the 40x if you start a game with the D2 cd’s in the drive it locks up the entire computer and can only be remedied with the reset switch.

Replace the Game
It is looking as if Blizzard may have some bad CDs on their hands. This post which appeared on a Diabloii.net forum tells of how D2 locked up one player’s machine and then kept giving an error message saying it couldn’t read the CDRom. He immediately went back to the store and exchanged the copy:

Thankfully they were very nice about it and exchanged it immediately, no questions (let that be a lesson for you guys who buy off the ‘net; could you have done this from a dot-com without paying for shipping and waiting another week or more while the defective one reached the warehouse and a replacement was sent out? Support your brick and mortars!)

I also pop on over to Best Buy for a CD-ROM drive cleaner (not a CD cleaner, but a drive cleaner) - FYI mine is made by Scotch/3M. First cleaned my CD-ROM drive with the cleaner, and then popped in the install disc. Everything worked like a charm. Been hackin’ and slashin’ in them dungeons for over a week. Woohooo!!

See you guys in (Diablo) Hell. :-)

Re-Install CDRom
It seems the Diablo 2 CDs aren’t playing totally fair. A reader who wrote in to berate me for my jibe about having substandard CDRoms said his game more or less fixed itself.

Don’t give me this crap from about buying a better CD-ROM. I have a Toshiba DVD player and a Hi-val/Kenwood 72x drive. Both of these had trouble. I tried to install with the Kenwood, couldn’t. Installed with my DVD drive, it wouldn’t run the game, so, I re-installed the Kenwood and it ran. This is definitely something with their CD’s. No other game I’ve ever installed or ran gave me any problems.

I’m afraid he’s right - these problems inevitably mean Blizzard has missed something in their CD authentication code. If none of this is helping you, I have news of another possible (very effective) workaround which just may answer your problems. I want to check it out before I post anything, so stay tuned (Thanks Jon).

Burn a Copy of the Play CD
A reader has written cautionary note that older versions of CD burning software (Adaptec 3.X for example) don’t copy all files from the discs, and may be the reason from some of the problems with D2 copy CDs.

Please note thates from the discs, and may be the reason from some of the problems with D2 copy CDs.

Please note that BigKid does not support warez or software piracy, but if by implementing techniques usually associated with game copying legitimate users gain access to a game for which they have already paid, I’m happy to provide the information. Thanks Jack.

Burned Copy Fails
DiNg has written in with another bizarre twist on the CDRom saga:

This isn?t really a fix but a question. People have said that their cd?s they got were screwy, and when they burned a copy it worked fine. However this is visa versa for me. My Diablo II CD?s work fine ?thank-god?, but the burned copy of my Diablo II play disk (for backup and to play 2 player LAN games) isn?t recognized, and its suppose to be the one that isn?t encrypted. What?s up w/ that (I?ve tried using 3 different cdrom drives so im pretty sure it?s not the drive)? I have a new HP 900i CD-Writer 4x/8x/32x. Oh well, If I can?t figure this out soon I?m going to do a full install and use a hack that lets you not use the CD so I can play a LAN game.!!

Mix Up Burned & Original Copies
Justin wrote in to say his Kenwood 52X True Zen drive wouldn’t read the “play” CD for install, so he burned a copy of it and it worked for the install but wouldn’t play the game. He has to use the original “play” CD to play, and still sometimes gets an error message asking him to place the CD in the drive (the usual problem with D2 CDs).

Replace IDE Drivers
One more reader has written in with his “fix” for Diablo 2 CD reading troubles, this time a change of IDE drivers:

I have a (cheap) MB with the SIS 5595 IDE controller built in. After updating and upgrading everything - including swapping CD drives, I replaced the SIS IDE driver with the Std PCI Dual IDE (single fifo) driver. Works like a champ now.

Thanks Happy.

Possible Fix List
Many gamers are having problems with their CDRom drives not reading one or several of the Diablo 2 CDs, so in preparation for the game tomorrow it may pay to do a few basic system tweaks.

1. Make sure you have the latest drivers for you particular CDRom. These can be downloaded from the manufacturer’s website.

2. Download the D2 patch from Blizzard (yes the game has been patched already and another one is due out soon).

3. Horribly, you may have to update your bios. This is always risky (a friend did it last night and it failed, killing his mother board).

4. If all else fails try this advice from a Diabloii.net reader:

I had almost given up. Then, maybe by fate, I decided to go poke around in Device Manager one last time. I clicked on Properties button with his CD-ROM drive selected, then on the Settings tab, and saw the two words that were the answer to this problem — and, perhaps, many more cases like this:

“Firmware revision”

This was not a software problem, but a hardware problem. This was not a driver problem, but a firmware problem. Drivers are bound to the operating system. They are code installed in and integrated into the operating system, and allow the operating system to talk to the hardware. Firmware, however, is code installed and integrated into the hardware of your system, and is the programming that tells a hardware device how to operate. Modern firmware can be upgraded, or “flashed” like your BIOS, to fix bugs or errors in the hardware device’s operation.

So we went to the CD-ROM manufacturer’s web site again, traveled to the Support area, and checked for firmware updates. Sure enough, my friend’s CD-ROM drive was two firmware revisions behind the latest and greatest (the firmware version number is under the Settings tab mentioned earlier). The download was quick; the installation was painless. After we rebooted the computer (even though it’s usually not necessary, it’s recommended), Diablo II installed and worked like a charm.

The final Act of Despair (that’s a secret Act 5) is to replace your CDRom drive with a newer and better brand and kick yourself for not going with a decent model in the first place.

Last updated : 20 October 2000ago and I found that with D2 if you install it as a generic cdrom drive and click off dma you should be golden.



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