installing hard drives and IDE cables...

This is a discussion on installing hard drives and IDE cables... within the Tech Board forums, part of the Community Boards category; Hey you guys, I got a little problem. I've been toying around and older system I have, trying to install ...

  1. #1
    back? dbaryl's Avatar
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    installing hard drives and IDE cables...

    Hey you guys, I got a little problem. I've been toying around and older system I have, trying to install another HDD, etc. One thing I couldn't get to work is for it to recognize and two drives on one IDE cable... tried between 2 hard drives and 2 CD-ROM drives.

    I have 2 cables coming off of the MB, each with 2 slots. However, when I connect any 2 drives to the same cable, neither device is recognized by the system.

    Another quick question: there are 2 cables off of the MB, and under the BIOS the devices connected to these are considered Primary 1, Primary 2, Secondary 1 and Secondary 2, depending on which cable the device is on (one is primary and one is secondary), and how many are connected to each cable (the 1 & 2)... the question is, does it matter which cable to connect the drives, and which slot on the cable?

    Thanks for any help you can give me on this.
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    Re: installing hard drives and IDE cables...

    Originally posted by dbaryl
    Hey you guys, I got a little problem. I've been toying around and older system I have, trying to install another HDD, etc. One thing I couldn't get to work is for it to recognize and two drives on one IDE cable... tried between 2 hard drives and 2 CD-ROM drives.

    I have 2 cables coming off of the MB, each with 2 slots. However, when I connect any 2 drives to the same cable, neither device is recognized by the system.

    Another quick question: there are 2 cables off of the MB, and under the BIOS the devices connected to these are considered Primary 1, Primary 2, Secondary 1 and Secondary 2, depending on which cable the device is on (one is primary and one is secondary), and how many are connected to each cable (the 1 & 2)... the question is, does it matter which cable to connect the drives, and which slot on the cable?

    Thanks for any help you can give me on this.
    Okay. You have 2 IDE cables each with 2 female connections for devices. One is primary and one is secondary. Now you probably want both hard drives on your primary chain. You will have to change the jumper settings on the hard drive to reflect this. One needs to be the master and the other the slave. This is probably the problem you are experiencing. Make sure your IDE cable is in the primary MB slot also. That should wrap things up. Alternatively you can put one hard drive on each chain. For example, they would each be masters for their chain but one on primary and one on secondary.

    P.S. - Make sure the red stripe on the IDE cable matches up with PIN 1 on the Hard Drive itself. Bad things if not.
    "...the results are undefined, and we all know what "undefined" means: it means it works during development, it works during testing, and it blows up in your most important customers' faces." --Scott Meyers

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    Thanks a lot, that clears a lot of this up. Just one more thing: what would be the preferred setup if I were to have 2 hard drives and 2 CD drives? [primary/secondary, as well as end or middle of cable]. I'm guessing this might depend on how it works out when I set it up (space-wise), but in the case that either works...
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    Green Member Cshot's Avatar
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    I set both of my HDD on primary (one master and slave), and my 2 CDs on secondary (also one master and one slave). The cable doesn't matter I don't think. Best solution is to check your MB manual and see what they suggest.
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    Registered User JoshG's Avatar
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    Sounds like you need to set the jumpers on your hard drives and cdroms.

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    Originally posted by dbaryl
    Thanks a lot, that clears a lot of this up. Just one more thing: what would be the preferred setup if I were to have 2 hard drives and 2 CD drives? [primary/secondary, as well as end or middle of cable]. I'm guessing this might depend on how it works out when I set it up (space-wise), but in the case that either works...
    As mentioned above, I would put my 2 harddrives on the primary and my 2 cd-drives on the secondary.
    "...the results are undefined, and we all know what "undefined" means: it means it works during development, it works during testing, and it blows up in your most important customers' faces." --Scott Meyers

  7. #7
    Barjor
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    Just to make things really confusing
    My CD-RW manual recomends to do
    Primary ide -> Master HDD and Slave CD-RW
    Secondary ide - > Master HDD and Cd-rom

    If I put both CD's on the same bus I get a warning when I try to direct copy cd's

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    Originally posted by Barjor
    Just to make things really confusing
    My CD-RW manual recomends to do
    Primary ide -> Master HDD and Slave CD-RW
    Secondary ide - > Master HDD and Cd-rom

    If I put both CD's on the same bus I get a warning when I try to direct copy cd's
    That's odd. One solution is to go SCSI!!! YEAH SCSI!! ok sorry, I'm a big fan though. You can chain so many devices to scsi chains its not even funny.

    Seriously, thats strange it requires them to be on different chains. I have the same setup with 2 hd's and a regular cd drive and CDRW. I have 2 hd's one primary and 2 cd's on secondary. Check your bios settings and make sure everything is set to autodetect. May just be an issue with your certain manufacturer.
    "...the results are undefined, and we all know what "undefined" means: it means it works during development, it works during testing, and it blows up in your most important customers' faces." --Scott Meyers

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    No it really isn't that odd. It still works even if I put both Cd's on the same ide bus but you get a performance loss. Thats what the warning is about. Two devices that runs at the same time should preferably not be on the same bus.

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    Re: installing hard drives and IDE cables...

    Originally posted by dbaryl
    I have 2 cables coming off of the MB, each with 2 slots. However, when I connect any 2 drives to the same cable, neither device is recognized by the system.

    Another quick question: there are 2 cables off of the MB, and under the BIOS the devices connected to these are considered Primary 1, Primary 2, Secondary 1 and Secondary 2, depending on which cable the device is on (one is primary and one is secondary), and how many are connected to each cable (the 1 & 2)... the question is, does it matter which cable to connect the drives, and which slot on the cable?

    Thanks for any help you can give me on this.
    Have you checked your harddisk's jumper setting?
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    First, you should never mix hard drives and cdrom drives on the same cable. It will thoroughly trash hd performance.

    Second, when more than one drive is on the same cable, one must be jumpered as master and one as slave. Technically, master should be fathest away on cable from motherboard, but in practice it does seem to matter much.

    Third, the only reliable way to read from a cdrom and write to a cdrw is to image to a hard drive.

    If you want 2hd's , a cdrom and a cdrw, this seems to work the best:

    primary master hd1
    primary slave hd2
    secondary master cdrom
    secondary slave cdrw

    It is also a very good idea to enter bios setup and set the secondary ide interface to pio4. Cdrw drives don't like dma tranfer modes and you can save a lot of headaches. Pio4 is fast enough for vitually all cdrom/cdrw drives.

  12. #12
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    I would reccomend setting it up how you want to best use it. For me I have two harddrives on the primary IDE, and two CD-ROM's on the secondary.

    I do this for two reasons:
    #1. On this Gateway case it is (virtually) impossible to have 4 devices attached any other way. Bad case layout.

    #2. I'm more likely to be burning stuff from the hard-drive than CD to CD. Since a single cable can only read/write from one device at a time, putting the burner/source on the same channel essentialy halves performance.

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    It's true that having the cdrom and cdrw on separate drives would theoretically let you burn directly but it almost never works. The problem is that this forces mixing a hd and a cd device on a single cable and this is bad.

    What happens is that HD's and cdrom/cdrw's have very different access characteristics and because of this you will wind up with a buffer under run failure. Add to this the fact that most cdrom/rw have problems with dma transfer modes and you end up paying a heavy hd performance price. I strongly reccomend cd devices on one cable (secondary) in PIO/4 and hd's on the primary.

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    Addicted to the Internet netboy's Avatar
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    Originally posted by kevinalm
    First, you should never mix hard drives and cdrom drives on the same cable. It will thoroughly trash hd performance.
    I'm totally disagree with this statement... Although me myself would still recommend having both harddisk on the primary channel but I can't see why setting the cdrom and harddisk on the same channel would crash the harddisk performance... Can you explain, kevinalm?
    It's unfulfilled dreams that keep you alive.

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    To start with cdrom/cdrw drives are atapi devices. They are accessed via a programmed interface. Sort of a scsi on a ide cable. Hd's are straight ide.

    Cd's have a long seek time compared to hd's, and a slower transfer rate. This makes mixing them on the same cable problematic. Also, I have seen hd/cd combinations that absolutely refuse to work together on the same cable. (One or the other won't recognize, etc.)

    Most importantly, some cdrom's and most cdrw's refuse to work correctly in dma16, 33, 66, etc. You have to enter bios setup and manually set the ide channel(cable) they're on to pio/4 mode. This also limits the hd on that cable to pio/4 (8mb/s as I recall), something you don't want to do.

    Also, when the hd and cd are on the same cable imaging to the hd, which is really the best way to prevent buffer under run, doesn't help much.
    Last edited by kevinalm; 09-02-2002 at 02:43 PM.

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