External cd drive not working, advice please

Hardware & Accessories

Hi all,

Am using a MacBook Air 2013. And just bought a external cd drive from VICTECH on Amazon. The description says that it is compatible with Mac, but when I plug it in, the cd drive does not appear on my desktop. The disk slot only opens if the cd drive is connected to a laptop, and once connected to my laptop I am able to insert and remove DVDs etc: it's just nor appearing in my desktop or anything.
Iv tried:
Different USB ports,
Different CDs
Works fine on the home pc.
The drive does recognise the laptop as it powers up and am able to insert and remove CDs etc, but my Mac is not registering it.
Reading the reviews on Amazon, some other customers have used it with Mac perfectly fine....
Link to product:
[New Version] VicTsing USB 2.0 Slim External DVD-ROM CD-RW Combo Drive Burner Writer for HP Dell IBM Sony Toshiba Acer Apple Asus - Laptop Netbook Notebook PC - Black https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00SSZHYU8/ref=cm_sw_r_awd_MDj3vb29ZZDJJ
Any suggestions as to what I can try?
Khafsa :)



Submitted by Kevin Reeves on Tuesday, August 25, 2015

When in the finder, hit command comma to bring up the finder prefs and make sure that "CD's and DVD's" is checked to show on the desktop.
Another thing to check is to see if it's even showing up in the "Computer" folder of the finder. With a disk inserted, hit command, shift, C to go to the root of the computer. Here is where you'll see any drives that are connected and accessible. Check and see if the drive is there.
If this doesn't work, head over to disk utility. From the finder, hit command, shift, U to bring up utilities and select "Disk Utility."
In that list, you will see any drive and volume that is currently connected to the system, even if it might not be directly accessible from the finder.
Hopefully, this will show the drive.
If this doesn't work, any diagnostics from here on out is far above my head. I hope someone can chime in and continue to point you in the right direction.
Hopefully, this at least gives you a few beginning steps to try before moving on to the really geeky stuff.
Good luck.


Submitted by Khafsa2015 on Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Hi Kevin,
Thanks for your reply, unfortunately had no luck. Thanks all the same though.

Submitted by Marc Gelfo on Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Hi Khafsa,
I found this thread after googling for a similar problem, in this case a BenGoo external DVD-RW drive. Tried all my USB ports, the drive was powering on and spinning but my MacBook wouldn't recognize it.

I remembered that for some high power consuming devices, Mac OS requires the laptop is plugged in before it will provide enough power for the external device to run properly. I disconnected the DVD drive, connected my laptop to the power adapter, rebooted just to be safe... lo and behold, the drive started working!

The famous tech support mantras prevail again, "Have you tried turning it on and off again?" ... "Are you sure everything is plugged in?".. d'oh!

You probably have it solved by now but it's good to have this up here for reference since this thread was the first resource I found on google for the problem.

Best wishes,

Marc - Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!!! I registered for this site specifically so that I could leave a reply saying how incredibly useful your post was.

Like you I had the same problem and googled - the original question popped up and I checked the Finder settings etc. Then I read your reply. I would NEVER have thought of plugging in the power supply as a way to make the DVD Drive work. The external drive appeared to be working - the light came on and the file lists appeared in the Finder, but it wouldn't play the disc.

I realise if I'd first tried it with the mains power plugged in then I'd never have understood why it didn't work another time without the power supply.

Thank you again.


Submitted by FM on Saturday, March 18, 2017

When having some difficulty with an external drive, try using a different power cord. I bought an external DVD Writer by Asus, and tried swapping out the supplied cable for a different one which only has one USB connecter. Presto change-oh, it now works.

Submitted by The Doctor on Thursday, November 16, 2017

Hi, I just bought an VicTsing USB External Slot in DVD-R CD-RW Drive Burner Writer Superdrive, I can play and burn CD's just fine but as soon as I try and watch a DVD it says the region code is wrong and it doesnt give me an option to change it at all. Also Ive tried to find information on the disk drive and I cant find anywhere that tells me the drives region code!

Submitted by Justin on Thursday, November 16, 2017

To put my 2 sense in with this, Some of these external CD drives do not work with older MacBooks. For instance, a couple years ago, my uncle got a new 2015 MBP that didn't have the CD super drive built in. So he bought the external apple super drive. I thought, one friday when they were out at a live music thing, Hmm let's see what happens if I plug this drive into my older 2012 MBP. I plugged it in, and it would activate, but when I put the disc into the drive and let it do it's thing, nothing happened. I couldn't eject the disc, and the only way to do it was to restart the mac and hold down the eject key on the keyboard, and it would pop out the disc. The best thing I can tell you is that these drives sometimes do not work with older machines, I have no idea why, but they don't. I told my uncle what happened, and he was like "hmm that's weird." Never seen that before, but it kinda makes sense to me in a weird sort of way. Maybe try buying the apple super drive and see if it works.

Submitted by beccal on Monday, December 25, 2017

Hi all, I tried all the suggestions here, and none of it is working :/ The CD extension will take the dvd and power on and spin but then spit it out after a minute. My computer is not showing that it recognizes it anywhere.

Submitted by AleBeefInk on Sunday, July 1, 2018

I had the exact same problem as #8. "The CD extension will take the dvd and power on and spin but then spit it out after a minute. My computer is not showing that it recognizes it anywhere."
Guess what? I turned the drive upside down with the Apple icon underneath instead of on top. (Now the top is silver in color and without any graphics or markings.) PRESTO! IT WORKS.

However, it puzzles me that even when it's working, there is nothing visible on the screen. And I can connect or disconnect the cable for the external DVD without getting any kind of prompt or error message.

Submitted by Tzur on Monday, October 7, 2019

I have had the same problem as others on this blog: the DVD/CD-writers I purchased that claimed to be Mac-compatible just did not work with my iMac, or if they did, it was only to play a CD inserted into the external drive, but not to burn a new one. For example, the LG "Slim Portable DVD Writer" I first purchased did as just described: it only played CDs, but there was no way to burn a new one. In fact, the software disk with the LG, "CyberLink Media Suite 10," after whirring a bit just threw up a brief message that it was set for 34-bit Macs, and while it might work with 64-bit Macs it was recommended to get an upgrade from the "Support" site of LG. (I should add that I have a 27-inch iMac, from Late 2013, with a 3.5 GHz Intel Core i7, running OS 10.13.6 - High Sierra). When I went to the LG website support page for their DVD/CD writer, there was no upgrade or update given. Turning back to my computer finder screen, I noticed that the LG did not even show up there in the left Sidebar "Devices" list. After trying various ways of getting the icon onto the screen I clicked on the Finder "Preferences" and found that one of the four icons presented was "Sidebar." Clicking on that, a table was provided of items that, if checked, would appear listed in the Sidebar. Under "Devices," the "CDs, DVDs, and iPods" was unchecked; I checked it, and the LG external drive appeared in the Sidebar under the name "Remote Disc". Now I had a destination for the items I wanted to burn from my iTunes program. But when I dragged an album to the "Remote Disc," it popped right back to the iTunes program and refused to appear in the "Remote Disc" -- in fact, a dialog box came up saying I needed to click on the "Authenticate" link to get permission to use that device. There was no "Authenticate" link anywhere on the screen or its menus, or in System Preferences, etc.

I took the LG DVD/CD writer back to get a refund. Then I purchased a Verbatim "External Slimline CD/DVD Writer" that claimed Mac compatibility. The same problems emerged with it. However, I noticed that it above all claimed PC compatibility. So I downloaded a free "Virtual Machine" software that promised that a portion of the hard drive would be portioned for Microsoft and other PC products. But the instructions that came with it for using external CD writers were so multi-step, arcane and computer-code oriented that I saw that it would take me a fairly long time just to learn how to use that program. Ridiculous for me -- computer coders no doubt would have no trouble. So I erased it from my computer. Instead, it occurred to me to go to a Mac software site I trusted and download an up-to-date DVD/CD writer program that was compatible with 64-bit chips. I did not need a fancy one, just one that did the basics. The "Burn" software was given good recommendations and it was free. I downloaded and installed it, and it worked. My Verbatim writer engaged with it readily and I burned the album from iTunes I wanted to duplicate. End of story.