Re: DVD Burner
I've seen burners last much longer than 3 years. Who knows, it could have burned our prematurely if you use it a lot. Yeah, try doing all the little stuff first like firmware, uninstalling it from device manager and installing it again, remove DVD burning software-reboot and reinstall Nero or something. Could the cable accidently come loose somewhere in the case while you were tinkering with something? THese are little things you could try. May be tedious work, but if you don't have the money yet to buy a replacement, then try all these things. I would even boot into Safe Mode just for the hell of it to see if it works in there. It's a longshot, but I've seen stranger things. Just some thought on that. Then if everything fails, buy a LiteOn burner or something. THey're pretty cheap.
*Fact: Microsoft Window's Blue Screen of Death vs Computerforums.org's White Screen of Death. Which is worse?