Windows Media Player does not recognize blank CD? Fix it now

by Tashreef Shareef
Tashreef Shareef
Tashreef Shareef
Windows & Software Expert
Tashreef Shareef is a software developer turned tech writer. He discovered his interest in technology after reading a tech magazine accidentally. Now he writes about everything tech from... read more
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  • If Windows Media Player doesn't recognize blank CDs, it's either from your disk or the software.
  • The issue may also appear from corrupt Registry entries so you should try fixing them.
  • Changing the AutoPlay settings from your OS can also lead to a favorable solution.
  • Try to run the built-in Windows troubleshooter to fix this WMP problem quickly.
What to do if Windows Media Player does not recognize blank CD

Windows OS comes pre-installed with Windows Media Player, but sometimes the program doesn’t recognize a blank CD. The problem can be with your disc or your PC.

So, in this article, we have listed all the possible solutions to fix this problem.

What can I do if Windows 10 Media Player won’t recognize CD?

  1. Fix corrupted registry entries
  2. Change AutoPlay settings
  3. Use a different CD burning software
  4. Run the troubleshooter for Media Player
  5. Update the optical drive driver
  6. Remove and reinstall IDE/ATAPI driver
  7. Check your CD / Optical Drive

1. Fix corrupted registry entries

  1. Press the Windows key + R keyboard shortcut to open Run.
  2. Type regedit and press Enter or click OK (you will need administrative privileges to run the Registry Editor).
  3. Navigate to the following subkey: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetControlClass{4D36E965-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}
  4. Select UpperFilters, and select Delete from the Edit menu.
    • If you can’t find the UpperFilters key, you will need to also delete the LowerFilters registry key.
  5. Exit the Registry Editor and restart the PC.
Note icon NOTE
Note: You need administrative privileges to perform the steps above. Also, this is a method dedicated to advanced users only.

This problem may be caused by some corrupt registry entries. To use Registry Editor to delete the corrupted Registry entries, follow the steps above.

Backup your registry before starting the procedure above to make sure that your system will not be affected.

You should also know that after deleting the registry key, some CD or DVD recording software can start malfunctioning so, you might need to uninstall and reinstall them.

2. Use a different CD burning software

Another alternative, for CD veterans, is to use some different burning software to burn the disc. In this case, we strongly suggest that you try out Ashampoo Burning Studio.

It is a simple to use tool to copy CD, DVD, and Blu-ray discs, modify existing discs or create your own video discs.

Despite the multitude of multimedia features, the tool is quite intuitive to use, since everything can be done with just a few clicks. So, no particular multimedia software knowledge is necessary.

Expert tip:


Some PC issues are hard to tackle, especially when it comes to corrupted repositories or missing Windows files. If you are having troubles fixing an error, your system may be partially broken.
We recommend installing Restoro, a tool that will scan your machine and identify what the fault is.
Click here to download and start repairing.

Ashampoo Burning Studio is compatible with Windows 7, 8, or 10, so you really have no compatibility excuse not to try it out. Besides, it also has a freeware version, with fewer features, the CD burning one is included.

Ashampoo Burning Studio

Ashampoo Burning Studio

Burn, rip, or create CDs, DVDs, Blue-ray disc and design their covers and labels with this versatile editor.

3. Change AutoPlay settings

  1. Go to Settings and open Devices.
  2. Scroll down to AutoPlay tab.
  3. From Removable Drive, select Ask me every time from the drop-down menu.
    AutoPlay Windows 10 Windows Media Player does not recognize blank CD
  4. Close the Settings window. Insert the CD again and see if the player recognizes the disk.
  5. If you get the AutoPlay window, you can drag and drop any files to the CD to burn it.

The AutoPlay settings can be the culprit for this problem so changing them can solve it right away. Check the steps above to get it done quickly.

4. Run the troubleshooter for Media Player

  1. Press Windows Key + R, type control, and hit enter. This will open the Control Panel.
  2. In the search field, type Troubleshoot and click on Troubleshooting.
  3. Click on Hardware and Sound.
    troubleshooting window Windows Media Player blank CD issues
  4. Scroll down and click on Windows Media Player DVD.
  5. Click Next to proceed.
  6. Windows will scan the PC for optical drive issues and suggest any fixes accordingly.
  7. If you get an error showing No DVD Playback device detected, the problem can be with your optical drive.

If Control Panel not opening, here is a great guide that will help you get it up and running again.

5. Update the optical drive driver

  1. Type Device Manager in the Search/Cortana bar and hit Enter.
  2. Scroll-down to DVD/CD-ROM drives and expand it. Right-click on the drive and select Update Driver.
    update driver Windows Media Player does not recognize blank CD
  3. Select Search automatically for updated driver software option.
    search automatically for updated driver software Windows Media Player does not recognize blank CD
  4. Wait for the Windows to search for any driver updates. Windows will automatically download and install any new drivers.
  5. Restart your PC and check for any improvements.

Alternatively, you can use third-party tools to automatically update all outdated drivers on your system with just a couple of clicks.

⇒ Get Driverfix

6. Remove and reinstall IDE/ATAPI driver

  1. In the Device Manager, expand IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers.
  2. Right-click on Standard SATA AHCI Controller and select Update. Do this for any other SATA driver under this section.
  3. If no updates are found for this driver, right-click on the Standard SATA AHCI Controller and select Uninstall.
    uninstall device Windows Media Player blank CD can't read
  4. Restart your PC. Windows will automatically reinstall the uninstalled drivers after the restart.

Usually, you don’t need to update IDE/ATAPI drivers manually as it is handled by the OS automatically. However, you can try reinstalling the driver if you suspect that this causes the system to not recognize CDs.

7. Check your CD / Optical Drive

If you have an internal or external optical drive, it is possible that your CD drive is at fault here. Now, this is the last way to resolve this problem, but if nothing works, you might want to consider the hardware failure as the cause.

For an external CD drive, try connecting to another PC. If it doesn’t work, you may have to send it for repair.

These are some solutions that you can try if Windows Media Player doesn’t recognize a blank CD. If any of these solutions worked for you, let us know in the comment section below.

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