Unfortunately, I don't have the old DVDROM drive with me anymore. Sold that off a few days after the NEC 6650 arrived :sad:
I did try using the Nero Info Tool, and I checked the configuration with it. The current NEC 6650 Drive sets itself up as :
Secondary IDE Channel : Master
with DMA set to 'on' and Autorun 'on'
I was also parrallely trying to see if the binflash tool (v1.28) would be able to scan my drive and report the configuration. It failed to find any supported drives when run from linux (using necflash -scan) or from the windows GUI version. Using the -v option did display the drive (firmware version 102C) , although it kept saying that it was unsupported.
Finally I tried once again in Windows, this time replacing a media inside the drive with another with the binflash GUI running in the foreground. And while the new DVD was autorunning, the Windows GUI version of binflash was able to detect it as a supported drive. This looks like a bug to me. Once again I closed binflash and reponed it to find that it wouldn't find any supported drives. Very strange behaviour.
Coming back to the original problem, if I understand correctly, you suggest that changing the NEC drive from master to slave on the the secondary IDE channel using the reverse ATA tool should resolve this problem. Will the DMA being 'on' have any effect?
In the meantime, as you suggest I am going to try to get hold of a friends DVDROM drive (which boots properly on a thinkpad) and check out how its set up.
I guess soldering won't work for me as its already set up as master.
Thanks a ton for your help on this,