How to Recover a Stuck CD or DVD in your Mac

September 28th, 2009

Recover that Stuck CD in your Mac

It has happened to all of us at one time or another. We’ve put a cd in our Mac only to have it not properly mount, and then refuse to eject. So what do you do then?

The video below shows you some tricks you can try, and if all those methods fail, it shows you how to open up your cd drive and remove the stuck cd by force.

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Summary and Photos:

The Duh Methods

1.) Go to file menu and choose the eject cd option. (You can also use the keyboard shortcut Command-E)

2.) Drag the disc to the Eject icon on the dock.

The non Common Sense Methods

3.) Open disk Utility (In the Utilities folder in the Applications folder.) Click on the drive, and then click Eject CD in the application window.

4.) Open up Terminal (Again, you’ll find this in the Utilities folder in the Applications folder) and type “drutil tray eject”

5.) On a Macbook, Macbook Pro, Powerbook, or iBook, hold down the trackpad clicker while the machine boots up. This will force an eject.

6.) Hold down the option key while the machine is starting up. This will put you in the disk selection window. At this stage, you can hit the eject button on your keyboard to eject the cd.

If none of these methods work, your drive is likely defective and needs to be replaced. You still can recover your cd, however you’ll have to open your machine and remove the drive to do it. You can use our other mac repair videos to determine how to remove the drive from your machine. Then you can use our video and the pictures below to disassemble the drive and recover your CD.


Once the drive is removed, there are four philips head screws holding the top plate of the drive onto the bottom assembly. Remove these 4 screws.


Flip the top plate up and off of the superdrive or combo drive.


Another view of flipping the top plate off of the drive.


Use your fingers to lift up on the edge of the cd so it comes up and out of the drive. To reassemble, put the top plate back on the drive and replace the 4 philips head screws.

3 Responses to “How to Recover a Stuck CD or DVD in your Mac”

  1. kate says:

    thanks for this!

  2. Lauren says:

    #3 worked! thanks

  3. Alan says:

    Here’s how I do it. Shut down computer. Remove battery for about 10 seconds. Reinsert battery. Restart computer. As computer is starting, wait until home page is opening, then hold up the laptop with its disc insertion slot downward and give the laptop a few gentle shakes.

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