When I was at work, I called the store that sold me the DVD-ROM drive and asked
them for an RMA
(Return Merchandise Authorization) number. I called the technical support
department of the store. One of the guys in the store (being the persistent
things they are), told me to check the decoder first. I haven't thought of that, so I searched in deja.com
for anything about this mess. I came across something called "Remote Selector" from the web (http://www.remoteselector.com). I came back from home, installed the DVD-ROM drive and all that jazz. However, I also downloaded and installed the Remote Selector. I went to the software, and disabled the regional code checking in the decoder and slipped in the sample DVD.
Well, the sample DVD movie is a low-budget direct-to-video affair, but it works.
That's it! I'm getting Full Metal Jacket and Robocop (Criterion Collection)!