Hi and Welcome![quote=classicride72;2055938]
Question 1: Need help finding vendors who sell these SATA combo drives in a retail box with software, cable, etc. Can’t find:(.[/quote]Those drives are mostly sold as bulk, but there should also be retail versions available. Best source might be a brick-n-mortar store. Please note, that the 203B is phased out, so some vendors send out the 203D, which is a different drive (with similar specs)
Question 2: Does the software that comes with these drives WORK? I’ve heard pros and cons.
Retail Samsung drives come with an OEM version of Nero (don’t know if they already ship Nero 8 OEM). After installation, get the latest update from nero.com, and you should be fine, normally.
Question 3: Do these units install smoothly or are users having problems with drivers?
There are some incompatibilities of certain Sata controllers with Sata optical drives. (Check the FAQ for details, please.) Since you plan an Intel based system, there shouldn’t be a problem if you configure the Sata controller as IDE.
Question 4: I need two internal SATA hard drives (no RAID for now) but cannot find vendors that sell them in a retail box. All I see is OEM. Can any one help with that frustration?
Also, check local stores. Retail HDDs are much more expensive than the bulk ones, the extra price for a box, a cable and some screws is not justified.
Additionally, you might check our bargain basement forum for shopping advice.