Secondary IDE plug.. ??


David P

New Member
I just put my computer back together (VIA-503+ / K6-2 300 ), and my mom found an old perfectly good 1.2 Gig HD laying around. Wanting to turn this thing into an MP3 depository, I eagerly put it into my case. Problem: My main IDE cable doesn't have any more plugs on it, but we had an extra IDE cable. When I put my comp. back together, I put the HD/CD cable into the plug marked "Primary". Could I hook the 2nd HD up to the IDE plug marked "secondary"? I've done some reading and every article that describes adding a second HD says to daisy-chain it with the master drive. What's wrong with using the Secondary slot? Is this for dual-booting or something? Thanks!


New Member
Primary and secondary IDE plugs are virtually the same. Each plug can support 2 IDE devices, such as CDROMS, Hard Disks, Zip Drives, whatever you like. The two plugs are called Master and Slave. So basically you have 4 plugs:

Primary Master
Primary Slave
Secondary Master
Secondary Slave

Right now your config looks like this:

Primary Master = Hard disk
Primary Slave = CDROM
Secondary Master = none
Secondary Slave = none

You can run the second HD absolutely anywhere you want, without any problems. The only reason they suggest running it with the other hd is that sometimes it can be faster, but it will work perfectly fine on the secondary, ie:

Primary Master = Hard disk
Primary Slave = CDROM
Secondary Master = Second Hard Disk
Secondary Slave = none

One thing to watch for, sometimes HD and CDROMs have jumpers on them, in order to select whether theyre master or slave. If you put the second HD on your secondary, it can be run as either secondary master or slave, but master is probably better.

Drop me an email if you need more help.