Let's try to clear up a few bits and pieces here.
ysspo has posted elsewhere that his machine is a Dell Dimension - Dell tend not to use trashy IDE cables, though it's always possible he has a damaged cable.
Adaptec ASPI - this really is better avoided unless you need it - I believe wesociety will agree with me on this. Adaptec ASPI does cause problems (for example, it's a near guaranteed BSOD on my system when trying to mount an image using Nero ImageDrive with Adaptec ASPI installed - Adaptec ASPI doesn't cope very well with the number of drives changing 'on the fly'). There is a reason why Adaptec have dropped all support on Adaptec ASPI, and no Roxio burning software uses it any more (Roxio used to be part of Adaptec).
A lot of posters are saying 'solve your burning issues - update to the latest ASPI' quite blindly. Most modern applications do not need ASPI (KProbe being a notable exception). The low level aspi32.sys driver is very invasive and can cause all manner of weird problems, as I've posted about in more detail in the past. If you need to burn as a non-Administrator, the Nero BurnRights utility will allow SPTI (and hence Nero) to work as users of your choosing (or Everyone if you wish).
It shouldn't really matter whether hard disks are NTFS or FAT32 - personally I believe NTFS is the better of the two options, but there are possible side-effects of switching to NTFS that have to be thought about. Without third party utilities (or a reformat), changing a FAT32 partition to NTFS is a one way operation.
The most common cause of issues with slow and unreliable writing on an internal writer is DMA problems as wesociety indicated.