Second IDE chain crapping out on boot



Great forum, tools and community everyone, glad I found this place.

Let’s put your knowledge to the test and see if you guys can help me crack this before I go whining to MSI (mobo mfg.) or Lite-On.

Before we get started, let me give you my specs:

Athlon XP 2400+ Thoroughbred (2ghz)
512mb crucial memory
MSI K7N2 Delta2 Platinum, ms6570e, latest BIOS (nForce2 Ultra 400)
IDE Channel 1:
-Master: 60gig Maxtor 6L060J3
-Slave: 40gig Western Digital WD400LB-OODNA0
IDE Channel 2:
-Master: LITEON DVD-ROM 163D
IDE Channel 3 (SATA)
Windows XP Pro, sp2 build 2600
Gentoo Linux, with gentoo-dev-sources 2.6.7-r9 (r10 maybe, can’t remember), gcc 3.3, no APM enabled on my kernel

Here’s the (longwinded) story:

I got a brand new ( LITE-ON DVDRW SOHW-1633S for Christmas. Looked great, it’s the black version so it matches my silver case (well sorta). I took my case out and took my old Lite-On CDRW (24x) out and plugged the DVDRW in. Jumper settings are for slave, all connectections are secure, it’s an antec case and PSU, rated for my system. After boot it detected fine, as usual. At boot device time it attempted to boot from floppy->cd0->cd1>hda->hdb. It got to cd1 and failed, just stopped. Hard locked, completely. The DVD-ROM was a 16x microtek (someone told me it’s really liteon rebranded, though at purchase time I had no idea…not I’m not a liteon freak but if I buy something from mfg. X that works great, I buy from them again (nvidia, msi etc.). Thinking it was some bizzaro hardware incompatibility (I booted the first two standing alone and they worked fine that way, together they failed everytime) I removed the Microtek and replaced it with the 16X liteon dvdrom listed above, I removed it from my fully functioning file/print/app server. Made sure all jumper settings were correct, all cables securely connected and turned it on. It booted fine into grub, everything detected.

Not a problem since.

I decided to use the extra headroom that DVDRs provide over CDRs, so I tarballed my Artwork directories under Linux and used k3b to burn 2.6 gig of tarballs in just about 6-8 minutes at 8x speed (8x media, lite-on, dvd+r). Worked great and mounted fine under my bro’s dvdrom/cdrw drive on his laptop on the server I talked about earlier. I built a few more packages under linux (to support k3b, some nasty kde packages…yuck) and then rebooted. I was going to boot into windows to write a CD of itunes music but IDE Channel 2 was never detected. Upon normal system startup w/o problems it only takes a split second to detect all six IDE channel scenarios, this time it took about 5 seconds and failed on channel 2, showing a simple “none”. At this point I did a soft reboot when GRUB (bootloader) launched, using the reboot key/button on my case. Figuring at this point to be some bad APM support in linux (windows can’t get it right so I never expected unsupported OSs like linux to either) chopped the cd drives as it rebooted (it never happened before, but a new drive may have caused this) since this was the first boot+reboot into and out of linux since I got my drive I wasn’t sure (init 0 only shuts down the hard drives in my PC, not the comptuer itself…wacky in any case). After the soft reboot it still didn’t detect it I shut it down via the power button on the front of the case.

I waited a few seconds for the HDDs to stop spinning and turned it back on, everything detected fine. I booted into windows and grabbed the the latest BSOR firmware flasher for my drive and flashed it (the dvdrw, though there is this nagging feeling that I may have done the dvdrom instead but that’s insanely unlikely…not even sure if it’s possible). It asked to reboot so I let it, no drives in channel 2 were detected. I shut it down, started it back up and checked to see if my mobo bios was out of date, it’s not. Latest and greatest installed.

I searched around and couldn’t find anything about situations like this so I came here. I plan on contacting liteon tomorrow sometime, I just wanted to see if anyone here can beat them to the punch.

I’ll unplug the DVDrw and boot it a few times, and vice versa with the dvdrom and see if anything craps out.

Thanks for you time, it’s much appreciated.



Uhm, this sounds oddly like a bad IDE cable to me. I’d make sure that you are using an 80 pin IDE cable on your secondary IDE channel where the optical drives are and replace the old one that is in the system and see if that helps. Otherwise, I’m truely clueless when it comes to Linux (Only have used it on a few occasions while dinking around but otherwise haven’t really ever touched it…) so I would certainly replace the IDE cable (Making sure that it is an 80 pin Ultra ATA 66/100/133 cable and not a 40 pin cable) and go from there with it and hoping someone knowledgable with Linux may have some other suggestions… otherwise I’m pretty clueless with what could possibly be going on here. :slight_smile:


Check the PSU voltage (system monitor / DVM on a spare molex) - I had frequent disappearances of the secondary IDE as my power supply started to go bad (5v rail low).


Alrighty, sounds like good ideas. Though I don’t have any brand new flat cables (I’ve got a couple of the rounded cables, but they’re not good one’s just flat cables that have been scrunched together in a tube) I can try those first and if it starts to work I’ll grab to brand new cables (maybe good shielded rounded ones :stuck_out_tongue: ).

After that I might try monitoring the voltage coming from a spare molex, that’s a good idea too.

Thanks guys!

(ps thanks for reading the long post :stuck_out_tongue: )