PX 712A problems inst. into Dell Dimension 4600

I bought a PX-712A and spent hours trying to get it to work properly in my less that a year old Dell Dim 4600. It has a CSEL IDE ribbon so I set the jumper to CSEL.
Upgraded Bios, Firmware on PX, Graphics.
PC doesn’t like the old CD/DVD player and the PX connected at the same time.
On boot, the Bios reports Drive 0 (the PX) not recognized on Secondary IDE, this does not show on every reboot.
WHen going into XP I get the error “the system has recovered from a serious error message”
The PX DOES show up as the D drive. I was able to create a DVD from some data on the C drive.
The Plextools software says in the “General” info tab that the drive is “Master”
BUT it is jumpered to CSEL. It also shows three row of pins but the PX712a has 4 row of pins.
If I put an auto-run DVD in, the system blue screens recommending I do a memory check, or change video adapter, or disable new hardware or software or contact sys admin.
Spec on PC:
512 RAM
50 GB HD space
2.8 Pent 4 CPU
Nvidia Gforce FX5200 Graph card AGP 8x 128 MB

I know this is a lot but any suggestions appreciated.


Have you tried abandoning CSEL and using standard Master/Slave jumpering? Did you remove the old reader from the system and try with just the Plextor installed?

No, I didn’t want to ‘break’ anything so I kept it at CSEL. I am running with only the PX installed. The PX came with a std IDE cable. But I read the Dell manual and in the section where they show DVD box installation they say to jumper it CSEL. Can I use a std IDE and go Master-Slave? Or is the Dell system hardwired for CSEL?

Standard Master/Slave jumpering will work with any IDE cable, and works find on Dell systems. It won’t break anything, trust me. I’ve worked with Dell machines before. You can use the cable that is currently installed in the Dell, or try the one that came with the Plextor; it really doesn’t matter.

Thanks I’ll give it a try. BTW, is CSEL ‘better’ than std IDE or what?

CSEL lets you get around having to rejumper drives as master or slave since it determines that by which connector on the cable the drive is plugged into. Standard Master/Slave jumpering seems to be in favor though.

sullivas, welcome!

I agree with Two_Degrees. I also have a Dell 4600 where I installed my 712a. I would suggest the following:

  • Install 712A in the top bay, use the Dell or Plextor’s IDE cable as Master, plug the 712A in the black pin
  • Install your CD/DVD player in the second bay, plug it in the gray pin
  • Plug the other end (blue) of the IDE cable into the motherboard’s IDE slot #0
  • Make sure the harddrive’s cable is in motherboard’s IDE slot #1
  • reboot.
  • In Dell Screen, press F2 to setup BIOS
  • make sure you have the latest BIOS version A12
  • In bios’ “Drive Configuration”:
    > Primary Master Drive - CD-ROM (plextor)
    > Primary Slave Drive - CD-ROM (your other CD/DVD player)
    > Secondary Master Drive - Hard Drive
    > Secondary Slave Drive - None (if you don’t have any)
    > IDE Drive UDMA - On

Let us know how it goes.

Why change the drive cfg on the motherboard? Shouldn’t the Hard drive be Primary 0?
Can I just use the IDE on Secondary, set the DVD to Master (Top) and the CD-Rom to Slave and get good performance?


I forgot to ask, do you think by setting up the Master/Slave on regular IDE that this will solve the blue screen stop code when I try to run an auto-start DVD?

Yes either way would be fine. Same performance.

To be honest, I don’t know. All my optical drives are set to Master/Slave. Only some of my harddrives is set to CS. You need to try it :iagree: and please report back.

I may have mutiple problems with this. I can’t get the old DVD reader to even power up, it may be fried. But I attached the reg IDE cable and set the Plextor to Master. The drive works but when I put in an autorun DVD it blue screens and shuts down XP. Says to check video, memory, hardware, software etc. I noticed that my Internet filter ContentWatch is using 85-98% of the CPU, don’t know if that is normal or not, have to call. Also, I installed Pinnacle MovieBox Studio 9 Plus before I installed the Plextor, I have read that Studio can interfere with devices. I’m trying to get to talk to Plextor but they are difficult to contact and not eager to return calls. This is like a full-time job. Never did like upgrades.

You have too much junks in WXP. Use the WXP recovery CDs to wipe the HD and reload windows. No need to connect the old optical drives from Dell. Just put in the 712A and set the jumper to MASTER on the secondary IDE cable.

That program shouldn’t be pulling 85% CPU load. Be very selective about what you install in windows if you want a stable operating system.

Well I got to speak to James at Plextor this morning and he told me that the blue screen has been a problem ever since Dell bundled Sonic into the PCs, and they get calls on it all the time.
To get rid of autostart DVD’s blue screening he said to go to Remove Programs and remove Sonic DLA, reboot and the problem should go away. Will try tonight.
He also said Dell won’t tell you about this incompatibility, which is correct. I have spoken to Dell twice and it was never mentioned.

Sonic DLA… :Z We’ve seen reports of this software as well on this forum. That’s why it’s also mentioned in the FAQ :wink:

DELL PCs are shipped with a bunch of crapware. It’s always best to wipe the hard drive and reload windows. The PC will run faster with a clean registry.

Yeah I removed Sonic DLA and I’m in business. Works fine now. Sorry I didn’t notice FAQs here although I went thru FAQs everywhere else with no solutions!
Thanks for the help all.