I'm wondering if defective disks can cause a CD-ROM drive to kill itself as it attempts to read. 3 different drives in 3 different computers have stopped working recently, and all "died" trying to read CD-R disks I made. The drives had difficulty right away- they were spooling up with lots of noise, but unable to read. Afterward, they were unable to read anything, including CD-R and commercially-made disks.
The drives are still present as devices in the system BIOS, DOS, and Windows 95. They are unable to detect a disk in their trays, indicating "the device is not ready."
Could the read heads have thrown themselves out of alignment while trying to read a bad disk? I have noticed other postings about drives that suddenly are unable to read a disk and wonder if they are mechanically OK and just got themselves out of alignment in some way. Any ideas?