It likely sounds that your drive has gone bad. I've seen this happen on quite a few older Dell Latitude CD drives, as well as the CD drives in the last two HP laptops I've owned. If your Lifebook is a tray loader, I've heard that using canned air gently against the lens of the drive can fix the problem temporarily, otherwise you may just need a new drive.
Can you hear if the disc in the drive spins up at all, or repeatedly spins up and down? If the drive has a status light, does the light come on for an extended period of time when you put a disc in? These are pretty good signs that your drive has gone bad. Either way, this doesn't sound like a Windows or other system problem.
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Laptop: HP Compaq nx6325 - Turion 64 X2 @ 2GHz, 2GB DDR2, 100GB HD, ATI Radeon X300, 15" LCD, Seven Pro
Handheld: Palm Treo 650 - Intel PXA270 @ 312MHz, 10MB RAM, 32MB flash, 2.7" LCD, Palm OS 5.4