Please help to find a good set up


My motherboard is based on nForce2 chipset and there are 2 IDE channels, so I can use up to 4 devices (without buying an additional PCI card).

What is the best setup (channel-wise and Master/Slave) for the following devices:
2 HDDs (80 GB each, with one of the HDDs being the system/applications drive);
1 Asus DVD-ROM and
1 NEC ND-3520A burner.

Some time ago I tried hooking up the optical drives to a PCI-IDE card (as masters, each on its own channel) but that resulted in terrible writing speeds and buffer level jumping up and down like crazy (that was a Promise-based card and I saw post saying here that these are not optical-drive friendly).
Would it make sense to connect the HDDs to the PCI controller (that Promise card is laying around somewhere) and use the mobo IDE for optical drives?

Thanks a lot for any advice.

HD’s on the primary channel.
Optical drives on the secondary channel jumpered master/slave. Doesn’t make any difference which drive, DVD-ROM or Burner, is master or slave. There will be a lot of disagreement on this but facts are facts.

yes, that’s exactly what you should do. keep each drive on its own channel, and make sure you install the promise drivers on your bootable hd before moving the hds to the pci card.