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Old 03-27-2009
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idea Western Digital HD's and SATA Controllers facts

Problems encountered installing SATA II hard drives on SATA I controllers.

Why is my Second Generation Serial ATA hard drive not detected by my First Generation Serial ATA controller or motherboard?

Second Generation Serial ATA (SATA II) hard drives are not detected when connected to a VIA or SIS Serial ATA controller.
These First Generation Serial ATA (SATA I) controllers include the following chipsets:



Our SATA II hard drives use autospeed negotiation. This enables our SATA II drives to automatically detect the motherboard data
transfer rate, making it backward compatible with SATA I data transfer rates. However, some older SATA I controllers are unable
to support autospeed negotiation and cannot recognize the drive. This “drive not detected” condition occurs when a chipset is
incapable of correctly negotiating the data transfer speed with a SATA II hard drive.

You can purchase and install a third party PCI or PCI-Express Second Generation Serial ATA controller card for your Serial ATA hard

To lock the drive at 150 MB/s data transfer rate, install a jumper shunt on pins OPT1, shown in the picture below.

If the OPT1 jumper setting does not resolve the issue, please contact Western Digital Support for further troubleshooting.

See [url=" &p_sp=cF9zcmNoPTEmcF9zb3J0X2J5PSZwX2dyaWRzb3J0PSZw X3Jvd19jbnQ9MzkmcF9wcm9kcz05NSZwX2NhdHM9MCZwX3B2PT EuOTUmcF9jdj0mcF9zZWFyY2hfdHlwZT1hbnN3ZXJzLnNlYXJj aF9mbmwmcF9wYWdlPTEmcF9zZWFyY2hfdGV4dD1qdW1wZXIgc2 V0dGluZ3M%2A&p_li="]Answer ID 1048: How to contact Western Digital for support (email or phone).[/url]

OPT1 Enabled:

[url=" ty=0&p_redirect=&p_tbl=9&p_id=1337&p_created=11261 09811&p_olh=0"]WD_SII_compatibility.pdf[/url]


Why is my Serial ATA hard drive detected as a SCSI device in Windows?

A Serial ATA hard drive is detected as a SCSI device in Windows Device Manager.

This issue could have several causes:

- The Serial ATA controller (on the motherboard or through a PCI controller card) is assigned default Windows drivers. If Windows is unable to determine exactly what type of device the Serial ATA controller is, it will attempt to assign the closest matching device drivers. Since Serial ATA works using the same principles as SCSI, Windows will assign a Serial ATA controller a SCSI designation.

- The Serial ATA controller's (on the motherboard or through a PCI controller card) bus architecture is taken from a SCSI HBA (Host Bus Adaptor). Many companies that produce Serial ATA controllers also produce SCSI controllers. These companies often use an altered version of a SCSI HBA on Serial ATA controllers.

- The Serial ATA hard drive is connected to a Serial ATA RAID controller. RAID and SCSI controllers have the same device designation in Windows therefore a Serial ATA hard drive will be detected as a SCSI device.

Since this issue is "by design" of the Windows operating system, there is no resolution implied or necessary. Any Serial ATA hard drive designated as a SCSI device will work properly at full performance and capacity. There may be device drivers for the Serial ATA controller that will list the hard drive as a Serial ATA device. Please contact your computer, motherboard, or Serial ATA controller manufacturer for any driver or BIOS updates.


Can I hot-swap WD Serial ATA drives?

I want to be able to connect or remove a drive without turning off the system. Is it safe to hot-plug WD Serial ATA drives?

Serial ATA supports hot-plugging (also known as "hot-swapping"). This is the ability to swap out a failed hard drive without having to power down the system or reboot. This capability contributes to both data availability and serviceability without any associated downtime.

Caution:: Hard drives are highly sensitive precision instruments that read, write, and store information on spinning magnetic disks. Special handling is required to protect hard drives from damage. Hard drives can be damaged by Electrostatic Discharge (ESD). Before handling, please use a grounding strap to protect your hard drive and other electronic computer equipment from ESD damage.

The Serial ATA 1.0 specification requires staggered pins for both the hard drive and drive receptacles. Staggered pins mate the power signals in the appropriate sequences required for powering up the hot-plugged device. These pins are also specified to handle in excess of the maximum allowed inrush current that occurs during drive insertion. SATA-compliant devices thus need no further modification to be hot-pluggable and provide the necessary building blocks for a robust hot-plug solution, which typically includes:

* Device detection even with power downed receptacles (typical of server applications)

* Pre-charging resistors to passively limit inrush current during drive insertion

* Hot-plug controllers to actively limit inrush current during drive insertion

Important: In order to take advantage of hot-plug capabilities for your Serial ATA hard drive, you must use the Serial ATA power connection, not the Legacy (Molex) power connection. The Legacy (Molex) power connection does not support hot-plugging.

To disconnect a Serial ATA hard drive from the computer when the computer is running, you must first use the "Safely Remove Hardware" icon on the system tray to dismount the drive from the Operating System. If the Serial ATA hard drive is not listed under the "Safely Remove Hardware" function, the motherboard or Serial ATA controller does not support hot plugging and the computer should be shut down and powered off before disconnecting the hard drive.


Benefits of using a Serial ATA (SATA) vs. EIDE hard drive.

What are the differences between an EIDE and Serial ATA hard drive? Benefits of using a Serial ATA vs. a EIDE hard drive?

Enhanced Integrated Drive Electronics (EIDE) hard drives have been the standard in the home computer industry for almost ten years now. Some common features of Western Digital EIDE hard drives are:

* ATA 100 - Drives can transfer data at a maximum rate of 100 MB/second.

* 7,200 RPM - Drives spin at a maximum rate of 7,200 revolutions per minute.

* Two devices per channel/cable- You can connect two drives to a standard cable.

Jumper settings - Currently a ten-pin jumper block with settings for single, master, slave, and cable select.

Serial ATA (SATA)
Serial ATA hard drives are expected to become the new standard in hard drive technology over the next couple years. Motherboard manufacturers are already including Serial ATA inputs on their boards in addition to the standard EIDE inputs. It is anticipated that Serial ATA will replace EIDE as the standard way to connect storage and media peripherals such as internal hard drives and CD-ROM devices in the future. Some common features of Serial ATA hard drives are:

* ATA 150 - Drives can transfer data at a maximum rate of 150 MB/sec.

* 10,000 RPM - The Western Digital Raptor hard drive spins at 10,000 RPM. This means the drive can transfer and access data faster than EIDE hard drives.

* One drive per cable - Standard Serial ATA cables have only one input for a single Serial ATA device.

Jumper settings - Currently an eight-pin jumper block which is only used to enable power management on the drive. There are no master/slave settings since there is only one drive per cable.


Connecting a Serial ATA drive to an ASUS A7N8X motherboard causes the system to become unstable.

Why does my system become unstable or is slow to boot after connecting a Serial ATA hard drive to my ASUS A7N8X motherboard?

The Operating System becomes unstable or the computer takes longer than normal to boot after connecting a Serial ATA hard drive to an ASUS A7N8X motherboard.

This is caused by incorrectly installing the Silicon Image Serial ATA Utility that comes with the ASUS installation CD.

The Serial ATA hard drive needs to be installed before the Silicon Image Serial ATA Utility. Please follow the directions below:

1. Disconnect the Serial ATA hard drive from the Serial ATA data cable.

2. Boot the computer to the Operating System and uninstall the Silicon Image Serial ATA Utility.

3. Shut down the computer. Reconnect the Serial ATA cable to the hard drive and boot the computer to the Operating System.

4. Install the Silicon Image Serial ATA Utility from the installation CD that came with the motherboard.

NOTE: For more information about this issue, please see the [url=""]ASUS FAQ.[/url]

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