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Internal Zip not assigned drive letter

Posted on 1998-08-28
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Last Modified: 2010-04-26
After installing an internal Zip (ATAPI) drive, my system doesn't assign it a drive letter and the Iomega software cannot find the Zip drive.   (I reseated IDE cable, verified PIN 1, checked jumper on back on Zip and CD ROM, reinstalled Iomega software, verified Win95 running in 32-bit mode, tried reversing CD ROM and Zip as master/slave on secondary IDE channel)  What do I do next?
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Question by:purduepete
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by:wayneb
ID: 1123977
Does the bios see the drive at boot up?  There may be special parameters needed in the bios to get this to work, If you made this the secondary master then go into your bios setup and set the secondary master to auto if that does not work then try none or not installed. Give this a shot and then post the results,  I believe that the bios needs to see the device in order for it to work.

This is from iomega

Check all power connections...
Make sure all power connections re connected to both the drive and the computer. After you are sure the drive is receiving power, insert a disk into the drive. Once a disk is inserted, the green busy light should turn on.

Verify Pin 1 connections...
Make sure Pin 1 is properly connected on all IDE interface connections. The colored strip on the interface cable will have to connected to Pin 1 on each connection. Pin 1 on the Zip ATAPI drive is towards the power connector. Pin 1 on the IDE interface is usually marked with the number 1, a colored mark, or a indentation.

Check the drive configuration...
Make sure the Zip ATAPI is configured properly. The Zip ATAPI ships ready to install as the second drive on the IDE connection. If the Zip ATAPI is the only drive connected to the IDE interface cable, change the jumper settings on the back of the drive to Master (Drive 0). If your computer is a Cable select system, use the "Cable Select" jumper setting.

Some CD-ROM drives will not support a Slave drive. If you have the Zip ATAPI connected to the same cable as your CD-ROM, configure the Zip ATAPI drive as the Master and the CD-ROM as the Slave.

If you have another drive connected on the same cable as the Zip ATAPI drive, make sure it is configured properly. If the Zip ATAPI is configured as the Slave drive, the other drive should be configured as the Master drive.

Disable ATAPI support in the BIOS...
Make sure BIOS support for the ZIP ATAPI drive is disabled in the computer's CMOS setup. This may require disabling autodetection for the Zip ATAPI. For more information on disabling autodetection, refer to your owner's manual.

If you are unable to disable autodetection and the Zip ATAPI drive is not detected, your BIOS may be incompatible with removable ATAPI drives. You will need to obtain an updated BIOS from the manufacturer.

Try installing the Zip ATAPI in DOS...
Restart your computer and when the message "STARTING WINDOWS '95..." appears, press the F8 key. From the Windows Startup Menu choose SAFE MODE, COMMAND PROMPT ONLY. At the C:\ prompt, insert you Zip install disk in the A:\ drive and type A:\GUEST <ENTER>. If your Zip drive is still not assigned a drive letter then you have either a bad drive, zip cable, or possibly an incompatible parallel port. Try the drive on a different system. If the Zip drive is assigned a drive letter, then there may be a problem with the first computer, try the troubleshooting in this document again. If the Zip drive is not assigned a drive letter, then the drive may be defective, obtain document #101 to have the drive serviced.

If the drive is assigned a letter in DOS, then may be a conflicting driver in the WIN.INI, SYSTEM.INI, AUTOEXEC.BAT, or CONFIG.SYS files. This will require a systematic process of disabling drivers and programs until the problem is located. Windows will load programs from either the Startup Group or the LOAD= or RUN= line of your WIN/INI file. You can stop these program from loading by moving the icons in the Startup Group to another program group and by placing a semi-colon (;) before the word LOAD= and RUN= lines in the WIN.INI file.

Windows loads most of its device drivers from the [386 ENH] section of the SYSTEM.INI file. These lines read DEVICE= following by a device type. Most of the drivers that were originally installed with Windows will have an asterisk (*) after the equal sign and should not be disturbed. Other device drivers can be disabled by placing a semi-colon (;) before the word DEVICE=. (i.e. ;C:\VFINTD.386)

At the time that Windows was installed, a clean version of your WIN.INI file and SYSTEM.INI were saved as WIN.CLN and SYSTEM.CLN. Printing these files and comparing them to your current WIN.INI and SYSTEM.INI will enable you to determine which drivers and programs were installed by Windows and which were added by other programs.

The problem could also be a device that is loading in the CONFIG.SYS or AUTOEXEC.BAT that is not used until Windows in started. To check for this, try renaming these files to CONFIG.SSS and AUTOEXEC.BBB then reboot the computer. This will stop these files from loading.

These are not cures for the problem but rather a way of testing and determining the source of the problem. Once the source is identified, the element of that source must be found and either reconfigured or removed.

Checking Drive Assignment...
If the driver for the Zip drive is loading, but you still have no drive letter, it could be a problem with drive letter assignment. Open the DEVICE MANAGER to view the list of devices then use the following procedure to check the current drive letter assignment of the Zip drive.

Click on the plus (+) sign next to DISK DRIVES.
Double-click on the ZIP 100 or the REMOVABLE DISK DRIVE.
Click on the SETTINGS tab then look at the window labeled CURRENT DRIVE LETTER ASSIGNMENT. If this window is empty, you will need to assign the drive a letter. If it has a drive letter is already assigned, you should try changing the letter.
Click the down arrow in the window labeled START DRIVE LETTER. A pull-down menu should appear with a list of drive letters. Select a drive letter for the Zip drive and that letter should appear in the END DRIVE LETTER (make sure these letters match).
 Shutdown and restart your computer.
In most cases, Windows '95 will not require the use of a LASTDRIVE statement in your CONFIG.SYS file; however, if in step #3, the only drive letter that is available is a drive letter that is already in use, you may have to specify a LASTDRIVE statement in your CONFIG.SYS file. Adding the line LASTDRIVE=N will usually resolve this problem.

Good Luck


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909233 earned 100 total points
ID: 1123978
I had a similar problem like yours...
Go into the BIOS setting and change the Peripheral Device setting
to ECP/EPP or Bidirectional and you should be okay.

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