How to Eject a Stuck CD or DVD From Your Mac

Posted in How To, Mac on 24/10/2012 by J. Glenn Künzler

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While optical discs are swiftly falling out of fashion, especially within Apple products, many Apple users still own products with optical drives – and at some point a disc will probably get stuck in that drive. So, what can you do when a disc won’t eject? Here’s  are some troubleshooting tips that might help!

Install OS X Lion DVD Drive

First courses of action:

  1. Press and hold the eject key.
  2. Right click on the disc icon in Finder, or on your desktop, and select the “eject” option from the menu.
  3. Drag the disk icon to the Trash.

If you’re disc is truly stuck, it’s likely that these won’t fix your problem. Fortunately, we have not yet begun to fight! There are many other tricks to try before giving up and taking it to the Apple Store!

Round Two

  • Launch Disk Utility, select the problem disc in the sidebar, and hit the Eject button at the top of the window. If your disk is still stuck:
  • Launch the Terminal app (found in the Utilities folder within Applications), and enter the following command: drutil eject

By now,  if the issue is software related (and it usually is), one of these tricks will have worked by now. Personally, I’ve never had the Terminal command fail to eject a disk. If you happen to be unlucky, however, and the disk still wo’t eject, there are still a few more things you can do!

Round Three

  • Restart your Mac, while holding down your trackpad button (or your left mouse button if you are using a mouse). Keep holding that button down until the desktop appears. This triggers the system to eject your disk before OS X begins loading.
  • Shut down your Mac, then turn it back on and let it rest for 10 minutes. Don’t login to your Mac yet. After a few minutes have past, the disk may eject itself (that’s the default if you insert a disk before login). If not, try pressing the Eject key once more.

If your disk is still stuck, you almost certainly have a mechanical problem rather than a software problem. If your Mac is in warrantee, bring it to the Apple Store, or an Apple Authorized Service Provider. If it’s out of warrantee, an Apple Store still might help you without charging – although it’s equally possible you’ll get charged a service fee, or the optical drive may need to be replaced.

Hopefully you found this tip useful and were able to eject your disk!


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  • Shannon Townsend

    THANK YOU!!! lol The restarting and left button holding of the mouse finally worked.

  • Sheila Berry Hudson

    Brilliant. My fix was the same as Shannon’s – restart and hold the trackpad button down. Thanks!

  • Ihsan Mohammad Ali

    a mini cd disk stucked in my macbook superdrive , i made many attempts to eject it but all was failed lastly i put another large normal size CD in drive only to stimulate it so the mac eject my mini CD normally , thanks for Allah

  • baruchatta

    Solution 3a worked for me. Restart your Mac, while holding down your trackpad button (or your left mouse button if you are using a mouse). Keep holding that button down until the desktop appears. This triggers the system to eject your disk before OS X begins loading.

  • Samuel Mwangi

    Thank you! I restarted my Mac while holding the trackpad button and it was successful.

  • Liz

    The terminal app worked for me. Computer couldn’t even read the disk so it wasn’t showing up in Finder.

  • CD was not showing up at all. Restart with depressed, left mouse button did it. Many thanks!

  • Lorraine D

    I thought I was in trouble! since I am not suave with this “computer stuff” I thought, o my gosh, I broke this. But with a lot of research and thanks to mactrast, I’m not in trouble any longer! thanks for helping this novice!

  • Nelson

    Thanks, it works

  • Drenna

    Thank you soooooooo much!!!!! The terminal app command was the ticket! I’ve bookmarked this for the future!

Author

J. Glenn Künzler

Glenn is Managing Editor at MacTrast, and has been using a Mac since he bought his first MacBook Pro in 2006. Now he's up to his neck in Apple, and owns an old iBook, a 2012 iMac with an extra Thunderbolt display for good measure, a 4th-generation iPad, an iPad mini, 2 iPhones, and a Mac Mini that lives at the neighbor's house. He lives in a small town in Utah, enjoys bacon more than you can possibly imagine, and is severely addicted to pie.