I have a tidbit for the next newsletter (at least I think it's valuable :-)
For failing DVD/CD drives:
Even encounter a DVD/CD drive that starts refusing to open? I have, several times. It started happening again with my current drive, so I scoured the web for solutions, since otherwise the drive was working fine.
The solution is easy: take the clear plastic spacer (shaped like a CD) that comes with spindles of CDs and DVDs and leave it in the drive whenever you're done using the drive.
In other words, never leave the drive empty. If you don't have one of these clear spacers, then just leave an old CD or DVD in the drive, one you don't mind keeping there.
This keeps the drive opening and closing like a charm, and extends its life for a long time.
It has been months now since I started using this method, and the drive works perfectly.