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BIOS does not recognize optical drive

This is a discussion on BIOS does not recognize optical drive within the Motherboards, Bios & CPU forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. I'm building a computer to ship to my sister in another state. Started it up for the first time today,


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Old 10-24-2007, 06:18 PM   #1
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Cry

I'm building a computer to ship to my sister in another state. Started it up for the first time today, and the BIOS does not see the optical drive. Motherboard has only one IDE channel, and both drives are connected to it. Checked jumper settings to make certain they were correct. HD is master; optical drive is slave. BIOS sees HD in both slots. Motherboard is Intel 915GAVL, optical drive is LG GSA-H42L. No OS as yet since the BIOS doesn't see the optical drive it can't be set as boot device for OS installation from CD.

A friend said he thinks I can't put both drives on one channel and suggests I replace one or the other with an SATA drive. I'm not terribly confident he knows what he's talking about, and I'd really rather not spend any more at this point, if at all possible. If the OS (which will be Windows XP Pro) will see the drive, I can probably copy the OS installation CD to another HD in an external enclosure and install that way. Just guessing, haven't really tried that yet. Would that be a good idea? Anyone have any idea if there's something I can do to make this work?

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Old 10-24-2007, 06:28 PM   #2
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Set the jumper on the hdd to master and put it on the end of the ribbon cable.
Set the cd to slave and but it in the middle.

In theory this should work but its not a very good way of doing it because you won't get the proper performance from the hdd. So your friend is right you should get a sata

If you have already tried the above and its not working see if bios see's the cd drive when the hdd is not connected, just out of interest

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Old 10-24-2007, 06:33 PM   #3
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Your friend is leading you in the right direction. Ive worked on machines
where the hdd and a cdrom drive were on the same ide channel. It
works but it really slows down the hdd. If you are determined to
leave this setup the way it is, go back into bios, look for slave on
primary ide, set it to auto or cdrom. See if that works.
You may also try this approach. Ive never used them but I hear they
work. That is a ide to sata adapter. The adapter will allow you to
connect the hdd to the sata port. Then the cdrom will be master
on the ide, and you will have to adjust bios to treat your sata port
as ide. Good luck.
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Old 10-24-2007, 06:36 PM   #4
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I tried disconnecting the HD, and the computer complained, told me to connect a proper boot drive. Although, now I don't remember if I changed the jumper to master on the optical drive before doing that.

I don't think the current cable will do that. The HD enclosure is at the bottom of the case, the optical drive is at the top, and the IDE plug on the MB is in the middle. Maybe that is the problem. I think the drives are connected at the ends of the cable and MB in the middle. Can I buy longer IDE cables? This is the first time I've built a computer with only one IDE channel.

Thanks a lot for answering.
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Old 10-24-2007, 06:41 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manic View Post
You may also try this approach. Ive never used them but I hear they work. That is a ide to sata adapter. The adapter will allow you to connect the hdd to the sata port. Then the cdrom will be master on the ide, and you will have to adjust bios to treat your sata port as ide. Good luck.
Now that's an interesting idea. How would I adjust the BIOS for that solution?
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Old 10-24-2007, 06:51 PM   #6
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You probably wont see the option until there is a sata connection.
Its simple, you just tell bios to treat sata like ide Not Raid. Those
connectors are about 20bucks. As far as placement of devices on
ide cables go. You are supposed to have the master at the end
slave in the middle, or vice versa. For me it has never made any
noticeable difference, but from directions and the book its supposed
to. When you attached the cable was the #1 pin pointing to the red
wire on the power connector? You can tell the #1 pin on the cable
by the white/red/dark stripe on the outside of the cable. Its the
same for the connection of the hdd, if its backwards it will not work.
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Old 10-24-2007, 06:58 PM   #7
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Quote:
Maybe that is the problem. I think the drives are connected at the ends of the cable and MB in the middle.
I don't think that will work

Take the drives out of the case and lay them on a table and see if the cable will reach, if it will connect master at the end, slave in the middle.

Also make sure you are using a 80 pin ide cable and not the old 40 pin
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Old 10-24-2007, 07:05 PM   #8
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If thats the case,,it wont work, I guess that possiblity blew by me.
Good call Doby!
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Old 10-24-2007, 07:05 PM   #9
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To be honest, the friend helping me connected the cables. This is my fifth computer to build, but that's been over a span of more than seven years. He builds them far more often so has to think about what step comes after what less than I do. It doesn't seem likely he got the cables on wrong, but anything is possible. Since this goes to my sister in another state, whenever it's not being worked on it stays boxed. I'm too tired tonight to dig it all out again, but I will be sure to check that tomorrow and let you know.

I volunteered to build this for her nearly a year ago and have been buying parts here and there ever since. Next week I'm scheduled to close on my very first house so right now keeping costs down is an important consideration. I've already spent several hundred to build her a computer that, while it won't be bleeding edge, it should be quite good enough for a few years. It's been probably close to ten years since she's had a working computer.

I want to say how very much I appreciate you guys answering and so quickly. I've been searching for answers/solutions to this for nearly three hours, and this forum is the only place so far where I've found any information/help at all. You guys rock!
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Old 10-24-2007, 07:13 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doby View Post
Take the drives out of the case and lay them on a table and see if the cable will reach, if it will connect master at the end, slave in the middle.

Also make sure you are using a 80 pin ide cable and not the old 40 pin
I'm pretty sure the cable is the correct one, like I said my friend did the connecting, and I recall him telling me not to dig out an old cable (I have a box full of bits, pieces, and cables). I will be sure to check that tomorrow also, just in case.

If the sequence in the cable is what's wrong, then I either need to find a much longer cable or dig out an adaptor to mount the hard drive farther toward the top of the case in a 5.25" bay. The hard drive enclosures in the case are at the bottom, and I want the optical drive in the top bay. In fact, the HD isn't even in the enclosure intended for hard drives but is directly under the floppy. That still makes for a long stretch from the top bay, and the IDE connector on the MB is between the two. This is a Cooler Master Centurion 532 case.

Again, I want to say how very much I appreciate you guys responding! I can't possibly thank you enough for your help.
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Old 10-24-2007, 07:14 PM   #11
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Check back when you can, take care, congrats on the new house.
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Old 10-24-2007, 07:28 PM   #12
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Devil_Woman, its been very nice working with you.

I only suggested taking the drives out of the case as a test to see if the system would then see the optical drive to make sure it was not bad.

But being realistic you can't leave the system in that state, both these drives connected to the same cable so the idea of a longer cable or drive cadie would be a waste.

I really have to recommend you get a sata,if theres any way you possibly could heres the cheapest I could find,hope it helps

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822144173
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Old 10-24-2007, 08:01 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doby View Post
But being realistic you can't leave the system in that state, both these drives connected to the same cable so the idea of a longer cable or drive cadie would be a waste.

I really have to recommend you get a sata,if theres any way you possibly could heres the cheapest I could find,hope it helps

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822144173
Thanks, Doby. Since you and manic both seem to agree that the best solution is an SATA drive, I think I'll get
this one. No offense, but my friend has had to RMA at least two, maybe three, Western Digitals over the years. I've always stuck to Maxtor. I've had or used at least 8 or 9 Maxtors since 1993 and never had one go bad. In fact, I think my first, a 212MB that came in my first PC (a 486 Acer) still works. At least it did the last time I actually used it.

Since Seagate now owns Maxtor, and, frankly, the only bad thing I've known about Seagate was that they got caught selling refurbished (used) drives as new around 15 years ago, and they have a 5 year warranty, maybe it's time to give them a second chance. This one is 50% larger for less than 25% more money. I think I'll go get it ordered now so I should have it by early next week.

I was really hoping to have this built and shipped before I have to move. I haven't moved in 11 years and have always positively hated it, but better to do a good job than an expedient one. Thanks again so much for all your help! I'm going to bookmark this site. You guys are a great and knowledgeable resource! I'll be sure to check in and let you guys know how things work out. At the risk of repeating myself, I'll say it again - you guys rock!
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Old 10-24-2007, 08:11 PM   #14
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Your welcome and please recommend use to your friends. Good luck with your move!

I have had luck with maxtor but when they first switched to seagate I seen some reports of alot of problems but none lately so I am sure you will be good.

I have always had alot of luck with WD and primarly use them now, I have a small shop and do alot of drive replacements, haven't had to RMA one in a few years, (fingers crossed) you know how that goes.

Anyway nice chatting with you and let use know how things turn out

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