Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.

The NEC ND-3620A and cdrecord

When most hope was lost, a firmware upgrade brought results. After resolving a character set problem with cdrecord through a downgrade, I received a “0x30 Qual 0x05 (cannot write medium – incompatible format) Fru 0x0” error and thought the problem was with the DVDs that I had just purchased. The DVD burner identified itself as “DVD_RW ND-3520A ‘ Revision : ‘1.04’.” After performing the firmware update, the Revision number became 3.07. I was successful in performing a bus scan with cdrecord and doing a dummy write.

The firmware update application required a Microsoft Windows environment. Because the only machine in my possession that operates on a Microsoft Windows environment is a laptop, there was a bit of effort needed in applying the firmware update. I needed to install Microsoft Windows along with assorted drivers on a desktop machine to run NEC’s update application. A task that could have taken about ten minutes required about six hours, because vendors continue to assume that everyone uses Microsoft Windows. It would have been a lot easier, if NEC provided a self-contained bootable image that delivered the firmware update.

For what it was worth, I am glad that the following was ultimately successful:
~$ cdrecord -R -v -sao myiso.iso

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