Strange goings on with k3b from extragear...

Duncan 1i5t5.duncan at
Tue Aug 4 06:11:26 BST 2009

"Steven P. Ulrick" <lists-kde at> posted
200908031916.49914.lists-kde at, excerpted below, on  Mon, 03
Aug 2009 19:16:49 -0500:

> I just got a new HP dvd1270 DVD burner, and it is working great, except
> for this strange issue that MIGHT not be the fault of the burner.  I am
> using DVD+R media from Staples.  I am running Fedora 11 on a SuperMicro
> system with a 2GHZ Intel Xeon QuadCore processor and 8 gigs of RAM. The
> issue is this: when I try to burn a data dvd (it does not matter if I
> set the speed or choose "auto") I get warnings messages that say the
> following:
> The media CLAIMS to go up to 16x, and the burner CLAIMS to go up to 24x.
>  So with 16x media, I would only expect speeds up to 16x.  So why would
> the media or burner not support burning at 16x, and then the speed would
> get kicked 1x higher?
> Right now I am making an image of the directory I want to back up, and I
> will burn it from a terminal, because I'm pretty sure I have burned data
> DVD's at speeds up to 16x on this drive.  I'll get back to you when I
> get done trying this...

I'm just switching to kde4 and haven't used k3b for kde4 yet, but with 
kde3's k3b, after the burn, you could hit the log or details button, and 
get the actual cdrkit or whatever backend messages.  That might give you 
a clue.

Meanwhile, drives may handle a particular speed just fine, but they do so 
based on data in the firmware that matches the particular media up to a 
particular speed.  As new types of media come out, it's quite possible 
the firmware that came with the drive doesn't support burning it at the 
speed listed on the label, and you may have to update the firmware to 
support the new type of media.

I had a drive with that problem at one point, but it was crappy anyway 
(kept burning coasters, burn half a dozen to get one good one... and it 
wasn't the media as a different drive handled it just fine), and with 
even DVD burners as cheap as they are these days (as long as you're not 
going blue-ray, tho I've not priced them in awhile), and given the fact 
that the only firmware loader available for it was a MICROS~1 based 
product, I just bought a new, faster and better quality drive, and just 
use the first one for a reader now days.

But regardless, I haven't a clue why it can't burn at the stated speed, 
but can burn at one above that.  That's weird.  But I've seen strange 
behavior such as that before.  My crappy burner was doing something 
strange like that too, not 1x over rated speed, but it could burn some 
media at high speeds and low speeds (1-4X, IIRC), but not in the middle.  
So yeah, I'm guessing it needs a firmware update to properly deal with 
that media... or maybe it's just a crappy burner, as mine was.

FWIW, my replacement turned out to be a Lite-On brand, internally (k3b's 
device info), tho it was sold as some other no-name, store brand or some 
such.  I've been quite happy with it, particularly given what it cost, as 
I've had no trouble at all with it.  If you're interested, the one I'm 
using only as a reader now is an Emprex externally, simply generic 
"DVDRW" according to k3b's device info.  I bought both units at Fry's 
Electronics, here in Phoenix (AZ, US).  FWIW I've had a couple other 
Emprex cheapo products I wasn't particularly impressed with, too, but 
they ARE low cost, and should work well enough to get you thru a tight 
spot if you're looking for something on an emergency basis, and don't 
care if it's practically disposable.  But Lite-On seems to be reasonably 
well supported in Linux, costs about the same as other low-end brands, 
and has actually a reasonably decent reputation and as I've said, no 
problems at all, here, so I can see myself actually looking for the Lite-
On brand (tho as I said it might be branded no-name or store brand on the 
box, making it difficult), when I upgrade to Blue-Ray or whatever.

Duncan - List replies preferred.   No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master."  Richard Stallman

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