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Ultra66 Controller Card Problem

By el_anciano ·
Installed a WDC 8.4 gig, 5400 rpm, ATA/66 hard drive and Promise Technology Ultra66 controller card, in 5-yr old Micron PC Pentium Pro 200 Mhz, 128 mb ram, Win98SE. Hard drive and controller card "work fine" at 33 mb/s setting but cause OS to "hang"at 66 mb/s setting. Have run WDC diagnostics software and hard drive checks out fine. Vendor provided replacement controller card and 80-wire/40-pin IDE cable. Have updated the bios AMIbios (1.00.18CS1). PC has Intel Venus motherboard Natama 440FXchipset. Are there bios settings that I need to check/change? Or, is this simply an incompatibility problem between controller card and motherboard/bios?

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Ultra66 Controller Card Problem

Check out the Bus speeds of your system. Also check your CPU's ability to cope with this level of Data incoming.

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Ultra66 Controller Card Problem

by el_anciano In reply to Ultra66 Controller Card P ...

PCI bus clock is set to 33 Mhz, as required in Ultra66 User's Manual. How does one check the CPU's ability to cope with this level of data incoming?

Thanks for the suggestions.

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Ultra66 Controller Card Problem

by dmiles In reply to Ultra66 Controller Card P ...

Check to see if your jumper settings match the clock and bus speed settings,by selecting F8 and checking the cmos settings,per the manufacturer manual which will provide the jumper setting for the controller card.

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Ultra66 Controller Card Problem

by el_anciano In reply to Ultra66 Controller Card P ...

Checked jumper settings on motherboard and PCI bus clock is set to 33 Mhz, as required in Ultra66 User's Manual.

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Ultra66 Controller Card Problem

by Zeus who Frags In reply to Ultra66 Controller Card P ...

Hola, el anciano! Que tal?

Well, I know ATA66 is quite recent. I'm not sure a controller card can be plugged on every motherboard, especially if the motherboard is anciano!
You have a good link to help you at http://jobs.seagate.com/support/kb/disc/
Type "UDMA 66" in the search box (don't forget the blank between UDMA and 66).
The best page I found is http://jobs.seagate.com/support/kb/disc/ultra_ata66_french.html but it is in French.

In summary :
If you have a UDMA66 cable, the plugshave 3 colors : Blue=motherboard, Black=Master HD, Grey=Slave HD.
Some motherboards fail using UDMA66 :-(
Flash your Bios.
Some Hard Drives (particularly Seagate) need to be configured to Ultra ATA/66. If this is the case, you should have a disk.Or try to see if your HD needs this (goto the constructor site).

Hasta luego!

"And so it begins..." (Kosh, Babylon5)

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Ultra66 Controller Card Problem

by el_anciano In reply to Ultra66 Controller Card P ...

The motherboard is most certainly "anticuado", but with a few upgrades, it will do fine for another year of service. The IDE cable is connected as you described. Checked that the hard drive was configured for ATA/66 before installing controller card.

The BIOS may be the "culprit", in checking the number of Cyl. Heads Sectors, the # cylinders is about 63 shy of the WDC specs indicate (16320 versus 16383). But, if this were the problem, why does it work at the 33 mb/s transfer rate?

Thanks for your suggestions.

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Ultra66 Controller Card Problem

by mphoffar In reply to Ultra66 Controller Card P ...

You may have to change the PIO on the Hard Drive detect to Mode 2, but usually these are detected. There shouldn't be any bios settings to change seeming how your board probobly didn't support ata66 to being with (thus the reason for the card)Assuming you have the blue connector on the controller card, the only thing I can think of is to get a utility ran enable ATA66 on the drive. A few of the ATA/66 hard drives I have require it be ran to tell the drive it's operating at that speed. It's similar to the programs we used to use to change an IRQ for an IDE controller on a sound card. Just a run once and it's turned on.

Good luck to you

Mark

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Ultra66 Controller Card Problem

by el_anciano In reply to Ultra66 Controller Card P ...

Hard drive is ATA/66 enabled -- confirmed using WDC utility. IDE cable connected correctly -- black on master drive & blue on controller card. Controller & hard drive work fine at ATA/33 but hangs when drive set to ATA/66. Have tried enabling and disabling ATA/66 on hard drive, but problem persists.

Thanks much

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Ultra66 Controller Card Problem

by CompZone9 In reply to Ultra66 Controller Card P ...

Yes, most likely. Go to western digital's web site (wdc.com i believe) and there is a section all about ATA-66. Bottom line: doesn't work with all boards--chipset/bios MUST be compatible. Some board mfg do not have bios updates yet or can't makeit work!

Sad but true: ATA-66 is pie in the sky. You won't notice ANY difference! Swap out the hard drive for a 7200 rpm one and see what a big difference there is in boot up, starting programs, scandisk is much quicker, etc. ATA-66 is a joke, even on the latest motherboards I've used in systems. All the 5400 rpm drives are dropping in price because they want to get rid of them AND some boards that don't support ATA-66 won't work and are unstable with ATA-66 enabled on the drive and most people don't know that.

Use the ATA-66 utility to disable ATA-66 on the hard drive and be happy or exchange for a 7200 rpm and still disable ATA-66. Sad but true.

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Ultra66 Controller Card Problem

by el_anciano In reply to Ultra66 Controller Card P ...

Will try a bit more trouble shooting. BUT, going to a 7200 rpm hard drive is probably a good and practical alternative.

Thanks.

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