Ejecting stubborn Mac OSX disks

I’ve been using a Mac for several years, and I’ve had in intermittent problem: about once or twice a year, a CD-ROM will get “stuck” in the drive. In the past, I’ve only been able to eject the CD by rebooting my Mac. I’m sure a Windoze user would rejoice at only being required to reboot once or twice per year, but I find it annoying. Just a few minutes ago, I popped a recordable CD into my drive and got the following error:

“This disc cannot be used because it is not recognized”

So now I’ve got a blank (useless?) CD in my drive, but there’s no CD icon in Finder to eject, and the eject button on the keyboard isn’t causing the CD to eject either. To the Internet, Batman! A little searching on Google turned up a helpful post: [Use disktool and System Profiler to eject stubborn CDROM discs][1]. The short instructions (excerpted from the article) are:

1. Run the System Profiler (Apple menu -> About This Mac -> More Info).
1. I happen to know that my ComboDrive is an ATA device by Matshita, so I just clicked on the “ATA” section under “Hardware” (left pane of System Profiler), then looked for a Matshita device in the ATA Device Tree (right top pane of System Profiler). Clicking on the Matshita device in the top right pane shows detailed information in the *bottom* right pane: I needed to know the “BSD Name” of the drive. In my case, it’s “disk2”.
1. Open a Terminal window and enter the following command:

disktool -e disk2

Poof! Out comes the CD! That just eliminated about half of my annual reboots on my Mac. 🙂

[1]: http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20031203232530190

About Jim Vanderveen

I'm a bit of a Renaissance man, with far too many hobbies for my free time! But more important than any hobby is my family. My proudest accomplishment has been raising some great kids! And somehow convincing my wife to put up with me since 1988. ;)
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One Response to Ejecting stubborn Mac OSX disks

  1. JulianF says:

    Thanks Jim, I had the same problem and your solution just saved me a heap of stuffing about on my Macbook! Much appreciated.


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