Open a CD or DVD Tray That Won't Eject

I just bought a new (well, refurbished) Sony media-center PC, and while it's working fine for the most part, there's one annoying glitch: The Blu-ray drive's Eject button doesn't work.

Consequently, discs stay trapped in the drive unless I minimize Windows Media Center, open Computer, right-click the drive icon, and choose Eject. Talk about a hassle!

While I'm working to resolve this with Sony's tech support, I need a faster, easier solution. And I found one: a tiny freeware app called, simply enough, EjectCD.

After extracting the program from the Zip file, I pinned it to the Windows 7 taskbar. (Vista users can do likewise by enabling the Quick Launch toolbar and dragging it there.)

Now a single click of the EjectCD icon pops open the drive. Even better, because I know the ancient secrets of the Windows taskbar, I can just as easily use a keyboard shortcut.

See, every icon in the taskbar (and Quick Launch toolbar) is automatically assigned a numerical value: 1 for the icon closest to the Start button, 2 for the next one, and so on. Pressing the Windows key and that number launches that program.

So I pinned EjectCD in that first position. Now, a tap of Windows-1 runs the app--and opens the drive.

I haven't been able to pin down the origin of this tool, which I found in an OverclockersClub forum. Thus, it's slightly use-at-your-own-risk, though as I said, it worked like a charm for me.

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