Drive suddenly dropping to PIO? another reason why

"For example, here’s one of the common problems brought by Starforce: under Windows XP, if packets are lost during the reading or writing of a disk, XP interprets this as an error and steps the IDE speed down. Eventually it will revert to 16bit compatibility mode rendering a CD/DVD writer virtually unusable. In some circumstances certain drives cannot cope with this mode and it results in physical hardware failure (Most commonly in multiformat CD/DVD writer drives). A sure sign of this step down occurring is that the burn speeds will get slower and slower (no matter what speed you select to burn at). Starforce, on a regular basis, triggers this silent step down. Until it reaches the latter stages most people do not even realise it is happening.

Had this problem with a Plextor CD-Burner some years ago.

After removing an old Hauppauge PCI-TV-card my burner never dropped to PIO again :smiley:

IRQ trouble.

which was probably causes by a driver which is what this Starforce uses to cause problems

True, the circle spins again.

No Starforce.

Im quite sure that the card disturbed the IDE-Ports that much Windows dropped down to Pio. (I tried using different PCI-Slots in order to avoid interrupt problems…didn´t help) No WinTV - No problems…

Many different things can cause DMA step down in XP.

However it will occur with Starforce as that Virtual IDE protection driver has nasty habit of not being able to read the sectors it was looking for. The result of which is interpreted by XP as a disk I/O error with obvious results.

Avoid SF with Plextor drives, it can kill them.

Thats why I originally posted that issue which boycott starforce now carries on their site.

When you don’t want the ‘FORCE’ to be with you!

How to reset DMA step down of DVD/CD rom drives

  1. Use the SF removal tool. (if you have used any games that use that protection otherwise you can trigger a code 41 error in the Device manager when you try to reset the DMA) Click here For the official SF removal tool
  2. Go to the device manager and (left click) on DVD/CD rom drives,
  3. (Right click) on each drive and click uninstall. (cancel the message to reboot)
  4. (Left click) IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers.
  5. (Right click) the primary IDE channel and (left click) uninstall. Do the same for the secondary IDE channel (and the IDE controller if its really stubborn).

If no hardware failure has occurred, when you reboot, The system will search and reload the drivers, (Reinstating DMA instead of PIO mode access).

If you are faced with a (code 41) error and you know the drive is not dead.

Windows successfully loaded the device driver for this hardware but cannot find the hardware device. (Code 41)

To workaround this behavior:

Create a restore point start menu-all programs-accessories-system tools-System restore and follow the prompts.

  1. Save the filter driver registry entries, just in case of problems, goto start menu-run type in “CMD.exe” without the " " then (left click ok) and at the Command shell prompt type in:

regedit /a SaveFilters.reg HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Class{4D36E965-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}

and ‘hit’ enter, that should save the filters section of the registry.

  1. using ‘notepad’ Copy / Paste the following and save it to a NoFilter.reg file in the root , windows or ,my documents folder:



  1. Merge the NoFilter.reg file with your registry or start menu-run type in “regedit /s NoFilter.reg” without the " " and click OK.

  2. Shutdown and restart your computer.

If you notice loss of functionality in any remaining DVD/CD-ROM software, you may need to uninstall and re-install it.

Oddly enough you may also need to uninstall and reinstall windows media player.

Should it all go belly up, boot into safe mode and carry out a system restore to the previously saved restore point, or at a command shell type “regedit /s SaveFilters.reg” to merge the previous filters back.