Put the Apple notebook upside down and slap it!

13Oct07


What do you do, if the Mac has eaten your floppy-like EcoDisc DVD and simply does not want to eject it – well you turn the Apple notebook on it‘s keyboard, press the eject button and slap it, I kid you not…

That was the easiest and most promising method I found. …and there were a number of tips, using knifes, credit cards, customised stickers and so on. Frightening. Some completely dismanteled there iMac with a similar problem.

Now you may rightly asked, how come, was I stupid? Well a little bit. There is a warning, two little symbols saying „no apple computer“. But first, have you ever seen something like that? Have you ever looked at graphic icons on a DVD? Touching the bloody EcoDisc I immediately sensed that it was much thinner and flexible like a 5 1/4‘ floppy disk (those old days).

While turning the disk to insert it in the drive slot, I briefly wondered if that was really ok and just as I released it, I wanted to undo my action, but the Powerbook was already slurping the DVD into position.

While watching the film I was dreading about not getting the DVD out of my Mac. And yes, disaster. The DVD was stuck. I decided to ignore that problem for a while. A couple of weeks later at a Mac reseller I finally dared to ask that question: How do I remove that bloody thing? „Ah, you inserted that blue DVD from the biz mag… Just leave the Powerbook here and it‘ll cost approximately 60 Euros.“ Wow.

But – I was also relieved, I was not alone. Thousands of other Mackies had made that same silly mistake. So I decided to use my pal Google. And voilà, thousands of links. And finally the suggestion found in a forum and on a blog. Turn your Apple notebook around, knock it slightly while the Mac is trying to cough out your DVD. For me the trick was in the end to put my PowerBook on the table with the keyboard face down. Then perform the magic slapping and …cough …spit, out came the culprit disk.

Lesson 1 – I will certainly never touch an EcoDisc again, but on the other hand, I have learned the trick. Imagine doing that with an audience…

Lesson 2 – Dear magazine, please never include such a floppy-like DVD again. And forget about that disk being ecological. Thousands of Mac customers were consuming quite a bit of (real) energy to get this problem fixed.

Lesson 3 – Dear magazine, I think you have more readers using a Mac than you think. The share is likely to be much higher then the general average. Know your custmer – obviously you had no idea… 😉

BTW 1 The magazine in question is brandeins (Wikipedia), the excellent and cool German bauhaus-style bizmag equivalent of FastCompany.
BTW 2 The documentary film (Weltmarktführer – Tan Siekmann) is very good although a little sad. The main character, the founder of Biodata, seems to believe his own bullsh…

Update: I initially misspelled EcoDisc as EcoDisk

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22 Responses to “Put the Apple notebook upside down and slap it!”

  1. 1 Robin

    Thanks a lot! After trying many different methods this one really works. I’ve used credit cards, knifes, paperclips but the disc did not came out. Even the guy on the Genius Bar at Apple Store wanted to replace my drive for 400$. But this method worked on the first attempt for me.

  2. 2 Iain

    What a great slap. The British newspaper the Independent on Sunday gave away a movie on one of these dreadful things today and it was only after I’d put it in the laptop (G5 powerbook) that I spotted the no Apple warning. So who looks for those!? Found your tip very quickly and it worked a treat. Very relieved and contemplating a future with dodgy recycled technology.

  3. 3 Jack Bishop

    I can’t believe it. This works! Thanks guys.

  4. 4 Libby

    Thanks for the tip!!!!

    I put the Independent’s free DVD “Familia Rodante” in my poor little Apple laptop, then after deciding that I was too tired to watch a film with subtitles, I found that, actually, I had no choice as the DVD was not coming back out. After a grumpy roam around my flat I decided to try googling the answer to this problem, as surely I couldn’t be the only person who hadn’t noticed the tiny warning on the back of the sleeve and had suffered a similar fate. TAPPING THE LAPTOP WHILE IT IS UPSIDE DOWN AND EJECTING THE DISC WORKED FIRST TIME and meant that my Mac didn’t need to be savagely attacked by a knife.

    I’m all for EcoDisc’s as even Mac users should have some sort of access to DVD players with draws, but the makers should make that warning bigger!

  5. 5 corth1977

    Many thanks for the tip!
    It worked at the first time. I didn’t want to stick anything into the drive and I’m glad to have found your solution. The culprit in my case was “Land and Freedom” which came with the Independent.

  6. 6 Frank

    The curse of Familia Rodante strikes again…….
    The fairy godmother slap lifted it.

    Speechless..it really works and thank you.

  7. 7 Raj

    Its not working for me, how hard are you meant to hit it, do i have to hit it in any specific location, i have a powerbook g4 n have been struggling from the past four hours..lol… help will be appreciated!

  8. 8 Raj

    There’s a god out there.. didnt realise u just had to slap it once.. woo hoo!!!!!!

  9. 9 Raj

    btw.. i got cursed by the PG tips tale of two continents dvd.. which is lame in its own special way..lol..

  10. 10 Dan

    Thank you, thank you, thank you

  11. 11 ajprice

    Thankyou! Also had the Monkey PG Tips DVD and just tried to eject it, this site just saved me a visit to an Apple dealer!!!

  12. 12 tassie

    After a month trying just about everything to get the silly monkey stupid dvd out, i eventually got it out on the second whack. So thank you very much.

    I am disgusted with the response of PGTips Unilever who assured me it was “clearly marked” and who offered to give me the money back for the teabags.

    4pt type is not clearly marked you idiots!!!!!!! And no there was not an insert.

    Drink TETLEYS today and forever more.

  13. 13 Nicholas Kerr

    Another Familia Rodante victim!
    I’m sorry I never discovered this page until after I’d spent £47 at our Apple Store in Bluewater Park to have the drive purged.
    To tassie I’d say, “Not Tetleys. There are good FairTrade teas out there. Choose one of them.

  14. 14 David

    Same problem. PG Tips claim they have had only a ‘handful’ of complaints which is obviously nonsense. Ring up the customer services number on the box. They have offered to ‘come to some agreement’ about the expenses for retrieving the disk. Waitrose are raising through their buyers.

  15. 15 Chrissy

    Good bye and good riddance Monkey! THANK YOU!

    I fell victim to the PG tips Ecodisk too. NIce idea PG but please put a warning!

    It worked on the 3rd tap. It isn’t even my laptop so I really needed to get it out.

    I am going to call customer services anyway as I saw absolutely no warning on the disk sleeve.

  16. 16 Mary

    YOU ARE A LEGEND! I mean it.
    First tap and it was out.

    Thank you so so so so much …and f*** off monkey!
    I shall be ringing customer services first thing tomorrow morning.

  17. 17 Oliver

    does this also work with an imac?

  18. Laid it on the ironing board upside down. Pressed eject and whacked the back of it – dvd shot out like a bullet! You’re a genius – no question about it! Many many thanks!

  19. 19 julie

    Thank you thank you thank you! One whack on the back (after hitting the eject button) did it. Ah, can rest at peace now.

  20. 20 Patrick

    Yes, the slap (about the same force as a customs guard with a stamp) *just* after I pushed the eject command with my mac mini did the trick. My mac then immediately restarted, probably due to the shock. Also, the disc was only detected by the OS after I turned the mac upside down and restarted.

    Technically this is both Apple’s and the EcoDisc provider’s fault. The disc doesn’t show a true CD/DVD logo anywhere – so they’re not actually claiming it is one. Apple, doesn’t provide an emergency eject button (paper clip hole and so is apparently not a valid drive).

  21. 21 David

    I just stumbled upon this old article and I had the same problem then.
    However, I recently got one of these Ecodiscs again and I contacted the company because I wanted to make sure that it’s safe for use 😉
    They told me that they revised the whole thing so that the new ecodisc has the same playability as our common dvds. (They had their product tested a a independet test lab – see their homepage)

    It worked fine for me, eventually.

    I also found out that Apple uses non-common drives, so that even normal dvds might get stuck sometimes. Hopefully that won’t happen in near future 😉


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