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Certain programs look for /dev/dvd by default to find DVDs. When I first boot my computer without a DVD inserted, /dev/dvd exists and points to the correct place (/dev/sr0). However, when I insert a DVD, /dev/dvd disappears. I'd like it to stick around so I don't have to navigate to /dev/sr0 in programs that are looking for DVDs. How do I ensure that the /dev/dvd symlink exists and points to the right place?

It looks like I can add something to /etc/udev/rules.d/70-persistent-cd.rules. This site gives a couple of examples, but the 70-persistent-cd.rules file says "add the ENV{GENERATED}=1 flag to your own rules", which isn't part of the examples. The man 7 udev page is impenetrable to me, and I'm not convinced the linked page gives 100% of the information I need.

So, what can I do on a modern, Ubuntu 12.04 (or later) system to make /dev/dvd always exist and point to the right device?

EDIT: Is it as simple as adding ENV{GENERATED}=1 to the rules in the linked page, something like this:

SUBSYSTEM=="block", KERNEL=="sr0", SYMLINK+="dvd", GROUP="cdrom", ENV{GENERATED}=1

Is that the right information for modern Ubuntu? What is ENV{GENERATED} doing there, when it wasn't generated, but hand-written?

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I ran into the same problem on a Dell Inspiron 660s. Wish there was a better answer for this problem. – Cerin Jan 21 '13 at 1:04
up vote 8 down vote accepted

This tutorial explain very nice how to do what you want:

According to it, there are two approaches to creating symlinks. The first one is to use the model name and the serial number:

SUBSYSTEM=="block", ENV{ID_MODEL}=="...", ENV{ID_SERIAL}=="...", ENV{GENERATED}="1", SYMLINK+="dvd"

This way, the symlink will stay correct even if you move the drive to different positions on the IDE bus, but the /dev/dvd symlink won't be created if you replace the drive.

The second one is based on the location of the device on the bus:

SUBSYSTEM=="block", ENV{ID_TYPE}=="...", ENV{ID_PATH}=="pci-...", ENV{GENERATED}="1", SYMLINK+="dvd"

This way, the symlink will stay correct even if you replace drives with different models, but place them to the same positions on the IDE bus. The ENV{ID_TYPE} key makes sure that the symlink disappears if you put something other than a DVD in that position on the bus.

You can find the values for ID_MODEL, ID_SERIAL, ID_TYPE and ID_PATH using the following command (the udevtest command as in tutorial doesn't work - anymore ? - in Ubuntu):

udevadm info --query=all --name=sr0

The SUBSYSTEM=="block" key is needed in order to avoid matching SCSI generic devices. Without it, in the case with SCSI DVD, the symlink will sometimes point to the correct /dev/sr0 devices, and sometimes to /dev/sg0, which is wrong.

The ENV{GENERATED}="1" key is needed to prevent the udev 75-cd-aliases-generator.rules file from overriding your custom rules.

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Thanks for all the info. I went to try out some of these rules, but found that my /dev/dvd symlink magically fixed itself sometime in the last few months. I also read in this bug that /dev/dvd's days are numbered. Oh well. For now, your answer seems to give all the info necessary to fix this problem. – chazomaticus Nov 9 '13 at 23:18

I found this on a fedora forum may helps:

Create a shell script file In that file, put:

ln -s /dev/sr0 /dev/dvd

Make sure the file is execlutable:

sudo chmod +x /etc/rc.d/rc.local

If you're going to use the rc.local route, you also need to do this, as root:

systemctl enable rc-local.service

because it's not enabled by default


---------The preferred way these days would be a UDev rule--------------

Based on /lib/udev/rules.d/60-cdrom_id.rules, which creates the /dev/cdrom symbolic link, try adding a file /etc/udev/rules.d/60-dvd.rules containing:

KERNEL=="sr0", SYMLINK+="dvd", OPTIONS+="link_priority=-100"
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