Question about Computers & Internet
What kind of optical drive? Is this a CD, DVD?, Blue ray,
or an opto-ferro-magnetic floppy?
1) External drive:
a) just power it up and connect it to the PC using an USB
or firewire (1394) cable. If it is USB, make sure your PC
is set up for USB-2 which is astronomically faster.
b) The windows operating system should automatically
detect it and install the low level device drivers.
Then you can run the installation driver CD that came
with the drive.
2) Internal drive:
a) Shut down Windows from the START menu,
chose shut down the system, NOT restart.
b) When it finishes shutting down, turn of the
power at the back (!) of the PC and unplug
the power cord.
Now turn the power switch back on for a few
with the cord unplugged, then shut it off again.
This will drain any internal capacitors inside the
power supply to make sure you don't fry anything
while you poke around.
c) Open up the computer case and look to see where
the other hard drives are installed and physically
mount the new optical drive inside the case.
d) Locate a spare power cable coming from the power
supply (Black, Red and Yellow wires) and hook it
into the back of the drive.
It should only fit one way, but there are several
different kinds of connectors, depending on the
drive type, so you may need an adapter cable.
i) Large 4 pin connector = Red, Yellow, Black, Black
ii) Miniature -//- = -//-
iii) SATA power cable = Small black hooked beastie.
Also make sure the power supply can handle
the extra current, this depends on the other stuff
such as drives and video card you already have in
If your power supply is less than 600W on a modern
machine, now may be the time to upgrade it.
I have two video cards, 8 hard drives and a DVD,
so I had to upgrade to a 1000W to prevent my
system from randomly crashing during boot up,
when everything spins up for a self-test.
e) Once the power is connected, you need to connect
the data cable, which comes in a least 3 different
IDE or PATA = Parallel ATA ribbon cable
SATA = Serial ATA cable, small flat cable with a red,
blue or orange jacket, and small black
hooked connectors at each end.
Note that these are a different size and
shape from the SATA power cables.
SCSI = pronounce scuzzi, no longer common.
One end of this data cable connects to the back of the
optical drive, the other to the motherboard, but this is
where it gets more complicated, because the mother
boards are fussy about which slot you plug them into.
You need to follow your motherboard manual here (HP) !
For SATA cables, you have to make sure that the motherboard
can handle them, older motherboards cannot, requiring an
adapter card. Also many of the new motherboards offer
multiple drive configurations such as RAID.
RAID = Redundant Array of Independent Drives:
RAID 0 = STRIPE for high speed at the cost of security
RAID 1 = MIRROR for data redundancy at the cost of $ cost
RAID 01 = Stripe of mirrors
RAID 10 = Mirror of stripes
RAID 5 = Stripe with parity compromise
Anyway, the problem is that on these mother boards some
of the SATA connectors are general purpose (which is what
you need), while others are not (i.e dedicated RAID),
and you may have to change jumpers on the board
or BIOS settings to get it to work right.
Also if the optical drive is to be bootable, then it sould
be connected to SATA1 or SATA2, but that again depends
on the motherboard and the BIOS boot sequence settings.
With the older style IDE or PATA drives, which includes most
optical drives (since SATA is fairly recent), most motherboards
provide two separate IDE ports, each of which can handle a
pair of drives for a total of four.
IDE1, Master = Drive 0
IDE1, Slave = Drive 1
IDE2, Master = Drive 2
IDE2, Master = Drive 3
Each pair of drives shares a single ribbon cable.
Older cables have 40 conductors,
Newer cables have 80 conductors for UDMA.
While the end connectors are the same, only 40 conductors,
the 80 conductor cables have interlaced grounding, which
allows them to transfer data at a higher speed.
Older optical drives used the 40 conductor, newer ones
use the 80 conductor, but there is no harm done using
the 80. If the ribbon cable came with the optical dive,
you can use it if you are plugging it into a separate IDE
Never use a 40 conductor ribbon cable if it is shared between
the optical and the hard drive, because this will slow down
the hard drive to the lower UDMA speed.
Now about the Master Slave thing:
1) Each PATA=IDE port can only handle one master/ slave pair.
2) You must never connect two MASTERS or two SLAVES
to the same cable.
3) The boot hard drive must be a MASTER on IDE1
for most systems, unless the BIOS has a way
4) When a hard drive and an optical drive share the same
IDE port and cable, the hard drive should be the MASTER,
for maximum speed, optical drives are often slower.
5) IDE hard drives and optical drives use a set of
jumpers near the IDE connector to determine if they
act as a MASTER or a SLAVE. This should be set before
you install them, because it is very hard to get at the
MASTER this forces the drive to act as a MASTER
SLAVE this forces the drive to act as a SLAVE
CABLE SELECT special color coded ribbon cables
(80 conductor) must be used to make this work.
These now come with most new motherboards.
The blue connector at the far end of the cable, away from
the other two goes into the motherboard.
The black connector at the opposite end (near the gray one)
goes into the MASTER drive.
The gray connector in the middle goes to the SLAVE drive.
(both drives should be setup as CABLE SELECT for this to
When connecting the ribbon cable to the IDE drive, make sure
the PIN 1, the marked side of the ribbon goes near the power
connector. On the mother board, the marked of the ribbon
connector goes into PIN 1. The connector should be keyed
to only fit one way, but don't count on it.
Hope this get you started,
BTW please rate my answers.
Posted on Jun 14, 2008
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017
Tips for a great answer:
Aug 10, 2011 | Computers & Internet
Figure 19: Cables from the hard disk drive, optical unit and floppy disk drive correctly installed.
The next step is connecting the power supply. The power supply has one 20-pin connector and your motherboard can have an extra 4-pin connector called ATX12V, which should also be installed (not all motherboards have this extra connector). You may need to lift the motherboard in a 45º angle with the table you are using to assemble your PC, since usually the wires from the power supply aren't long enough to reach the motherboard while it is on the table outside the case.
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