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Try first to test the DVD ROM using a Drivers Utility CD came with your computer.
Try booting to this CD to check if the DVD ROM still works.
Try to run but not install the OSCD to a different computer, just to check if the OSCD is readable.
If your DVDROM reads media try again the installation of OS booting to DVD ROM thru F12. But before that I would like to know if your laptop has more than 1GB RAM? If yes try installing OS again with 1GB RAM installed. You need to remove the other RAM.
Most likely this is due to a read error from the installation media. This could be either due to a scratched CD/DVD, or dirty CD/DVD drive's lens. Try using another unscratched installation CD/DVD. If this did not help, then try cleaning the CD/DVD drive's lens before attempting the installation.
If neither works, it might be related to a defective memory module.
It may be temporary, or the HDD may have failed completely; the latter may be for multiple reasons: impact, overheating, induced electromagnetic field (like a cellphone put in immediate vicinity of the drive), or just bad luck.
With such problems it's always a tough choice: - try various methods of recovering the drive, reinstalling the system and so on, risking that the drive contents will be even harder to recover by a professional data recovery company - or leave it as it is and seek professional help.
If you don't have anything so important on the HDD that would justify the big $$$ needed for data recovery, you can try various system recovery tools, and if they fail, just replace the harddrive with a new one and reinstall operating system from scratch.
Of course, if your laptop is still under warranty, you should call Dell for a warranty repair.
The BIOS is not reading your hard drive. Take the drive out and reboot into BIOS. Make sure the SATA port is enabled. Turn the laptop off and reinstall the hard drive, make sure it seats all the way and is secure in its caddy. Reboot and see if it reads the drive.
2.Insert the reinstallation media (Dell Media Direct CD/DVD) into the CD/DVD drive, then restart the computer.
3. press F12 when the bios page comes up and then select CD/DVD drive from the boot menu.
"Option 1" from the menu if you wish to use all of the hard drive for you operating system installation. This is the most common selection and how is your computer was originally shipped to you, unless you specified an operating system partition size at the time you ordered you computer.
"Option 2" to designate a size for your operating system and have a data partition. This allows you to specify a size for the operating system partittion, leaving the remainder, of the hard drive configured as a "data" partition ("D")
4. Once you have prepared the drive and you have returned to the main recovery menu, remove the installation media and replace it with you operating system reinstallation media. Select the option to reboot your computer. If your computer does not automatically start the media, press <F12> to access the boot menu and select the Cd/DVD boot option.
5.Install your operating system, select the Primary partition when prompted. If you have two hard drives, select the primary partition on the same disk where hte media direct partition resides. Once the OS is installed and the necessary drivers are installed you can begin the reinstallation of the dell mediaDirect software.
if it does'nt play dvd as well then-----
my compter right click drive then properties then hardware
make sure all your settings are right
check devices see if driver needs repaired
you can do a factory restore and see if that fixes the problem
let me know
if it does recognize cd/dvd then i would just leave it
I also have an inspiron 1525 and I once had this issue (I'm running xp pro) but I found that you need to reinstall you audio driver, here is a link to the vista driver http://support.dell.com/support/downloads/driverslist.aspx?c=us&l=en&s=gen&ServiceTag=&SystemID=INS_PNT_PM_1525&os=WLH&osl=en&catid=&impid=