I have a 4-yr-old Sony Vaio laptop with a Blu-Ray player/CD burner combo. It stopped playing a few months ago and my laptop is out of warranty. Besides, the dealer where I purchased it is 90-minute drive one way (I'll never do that again!) I'm running Windows Vista. The device is Matshita BD-MLT UJ-220S ATA. Through Device Manager I searched for updated driver software to see if that was the problem, and the result was "the best driver software for your device is already installed." But when I insert a DVD, it spins for 4 seconds then stops. It's not showing the drive at all in my My Computer list. What's going on?

Try booting it with a dootable disk in it. If that wont read then you need a new drive!

Thanks for your advice, Rik. Please excuse my technical ignorance: what is a bootable disk? Please give me an example of one that I may have in my file cabinet.

Something like a windows install disk will do as a test!

Thanks for your advice, Rik. Please excuse my technical ignorance: what is a bootable disk? Please give me an example of one that I may have in my file cabinet.

Thanks, Rik. If that doesn't work, I'll take this to a local tech and replace the player.

try using a disk with any data on it like a movie, music, game etc.
if that does not work remove the device from your laptop and bootup.
after that's done shut down your system and install the device and let your system reinstall the device.

find the device or model name maybe there is a web-site that you can go to and download the drivers if needed.