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Best thing to do is to try run something bootable from laptop start-up. For instance Windows installation disc or some kind of testing software disc. If it boots up, then your Operating System needs to be re-installed or maybe that disc is damaged. You could also try that disc on another computer to be sure that disc is OK or unreadable.
The problem is that the Drives lens is already bad and cannot read any disc, no matter the type of disc you put into it, it wont read it still. The solution is to replace the drive. Replacing it is the best way to solve the problem. If not trying to replace the lens is going to be futile as the lens for the driver is not available and when you install a new disc drive, it will have to install the drivers software.
If you replace the lens, the laptop wont be able to install the drivers of the lens as it reads it alongside the driver itself and if they are not compatible, it wont install the drivers software. So my best advice is for you to replace the CD drive.
My laptop is a typical example because my disc drive is also bad. And i had to replace the drive and not the lens.
If the bios does not reconise the hard drive then you will need a disk utility at this point. some laptops only accept a max of 120gigs for a reason if your trying to put a larger drive in a old system you need the latest bios drivers for one and use a disk utility.
Put your Windows disc in the disc drive. Tap F12 when the computer is starting up. Select load from disc. Install Windows. It seems to be the only solution to your problem. Hopefully, you made a partition and saved your files onto there, or onto an external hard drive to prevent data loss.
From what I gather basically you want to copy everything off of your 40GB and put it on the new 320GB and the install correct? Why don't you do a backup (Start>All programs>System Tools>Backup to the external 500GB drive. Install the new 320GB drive and then load the operating system from your operating system disc, then restore the data from the 500GB you backed up, or am I missing something.I know it is not as convenient as cloning but sounds like you may need to do it the old fashion way..there is no good reason that the cloning software would quit reading your disc unless it's some kind of "only get one chance and throw away software".
i think it might be software related if your lucky and not a hardware problem.
what you should try is update your dvd drives firmware which should be listed on your manufactures website, if not (which is most cases) use google by typing in 'make model firmware' (the actual word firmware not yours)