How to Change the CD/DVD Drive’s Read Speed in Ubuntu Linux?

Newer optical disc drives are a lot more quieter than the old ones, but they too can make some ‘unnecessary’ noises while reading discs sometimes. For instance, few months ago I bought a portable (USB) CD/DVD burner, it’s lightweight, relatively quiet, spins down the discs quickly when not used, so in general, I’m quite happy with it.

However, when watching some movies, the drive reads the discs at higher speeds and even though the movies should be watchable (no buffering errors etc) without having to spin it up to such higher rates, so after the disc is mounted (opened by your file manager), I use a built in command in GNU/Linux called ‘eject’ to manually set the desired speed (lower one in this case), which helps to reduce the noises.

Another useful thing is that, sometimes while copying a disc, if your disc drive gives you Input/Output errors, then slowing down the disc’s read speed can simply solve it!.

Now of course it won’t be able to let you bypass all the Input/Output errors though as it could simply be because the disc could be a damaged one or has something else to do with it. But, if you’re faced with the same issues or you just want to manually set the read speed of your optical disc drive in Ubuntu Linux, then below is one way to do it.

If you only have a single optical disc drive (CD/DVD/Blu-ray), then simply open your Terminal and enter the below command.

eject -x 4

Simply replace ‘4’ with you desired speed.

If you have more than one optical disc drive, then use it in the following format.

eject /dev/cdrom -x 4

Replace ‘cdrom’ with your disc drives device name, and again, replace ‘4’ with the desired speed.

This setting is applied to that particular disc (even if you reboot your computer) as long as it’s not ejected from the drive. That’s it.

An RHCE, 'Linux' user with 14+ years of experience. Extreme lover of Linux and FOSS. He is passionate to test every Linux distribution & compare with the previous release to write in-depth articles to help the FOSS community.

8 thoughts on “How to Change the CD/DVD Drive’s Read Speed in Ubuntu Linux?”

    • Hi,

      Well, you have to enter this command every time you insert a new disc into the drive (even for that disc, you'll have to re-enter it if you reboot your computer).


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