IDE Channel

Posted on 2004-04-26
Last Modified: 2010-04-25
I have assembled a PC and I get the following error message when I turn on the PC:
"Primary IDE Channel no 80 conductor cable installed". What does it mean and how can I fix it?
Question by:behrouz1
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LVL 32

Accepted Solution

LucF earned 42 total points
ID: 10919922
Hi behrouz1,

Pretty easy in fact, just open up the case, and replace the IDE cable (which you will find having only 40 wires) with one that has 80 wires.


LVL 69

Assisted Solution

Callandor earned 42 total points
ID: 10919924
It means you should replace the 40-pin standard IDE cable attached to your drive with a high-density 80-pin cable so that it can operate at the maximum speed.  These usually have color-coded connectors (blue and black), as opposed to gray.
LVL 32

Expert Comment

ID: 10919940
Just to explain a little better, to be able to use ATA100/133 speeds a 80 wire cable is needed (the normal 40 IDE wires and 40 other wires in between, just meant for shielding) You can get a new IDE cable in every computershop for less than $6
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Assisted Solution

ChrisSchumann earned 41 total points
ID: 10933415
You should indeed replace that cable. However, you don't strictly NEED to do it. Your system should work just fine with reduced performance until you replace that cable.

Author Comment

ID: 10957155
Thank you all for your comments. I already had that 80-pin cable. I had attached my HDD to the middle connection (Slave) of the cable by mistake instead of the end (Master) of it . When I changed it, the error message was gone also.

Expert Comment

ID: 10959198
As you found out, drive position is really important. When you attach to the middle connector, the rest of the cable acts like a mirror. It bounces signals back along the wires. That's a lot of noise to deal with, so apparently the system decides to just operate in the old slow mode.

Does your drive perform better now?

Author Comment

ID: 10966982
Dear ChrisSchumann:
Yes, It performs better now.


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