Converting Firewire DVD drive to Internal DVD drive?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by TheSpaz, Jan 26, 2007.

  1. TheSpaz macrumors 604


    Jun 20, 2005
    I have an external Lacie DVD-RW/CD-RW drive and I want to remove it from the Firewire case and add it as an internal DVD drive in bay 2 of my Mac Pro. Is this possible to do? I wanna find out before I start taking things apart. Any help is appreciated. Thanks.
  2. killmoms macrumors 68040


    Jun 23, 2003
    Washington, DC
    Sure. It's just a normal drive inside a casing. Remove the casing, and you've got a regular drive.

    Of course, no guarantees on how useful the casing might be after you've taken it apart, I dunno how it's put together and how much disassembly vs. destruction you'll have to do. Just be careful and you should be all good.
  3. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    It should be easy to do, generally. You may need some ATA cables to tie it into the bus (I'm not that familiar with what cables ship in the MP). Unless this has changed with the way the newest motherboards work, you probably want it in the slave position (i.e. you want the original drive hooked in first). Typically the easiest thing to screw up in this case is being able to boot off optical media. Although by screw up, I mean that you just have to change some cables around when you realize you made the mistake. May possibly also need some minor hardware, although probably not.

    You may end up needing PatchBurn also. But if it works in the Firewire caddy, it's likely to work either by default or with Patchburn inside the Mac.
  4. TheSpaz thread starter macrumors 604


    Jun 20, 2005
    That's good news. I'll check it out tonight. I'm not sure what hardware connectors I will need. I'll let you know how it goes. I kinda figured it would be a regular drive in there (I had similar experiences with external hard drives, swapping them and stuff). Woohoo! I can't wait.

    Also, how do you eject multiple drives? Do you gotta use the eject menu or is there a keyboard command for each drive like "eject" for drive 1 and "option-eject" for drive 2?

    I put the DVD drive in and took off the tray face thing to make it fit through the Mac Pro's narrow slot. The thing is... it's not recognizing the drive at all in System Profile. I also had a couple of total lockups when I rebooted for the first couple of times. Everything's running good again but, the OS won't recognize the drive and my eject key doesn't do anything anymore. What am I doing?

    Edit, it won't recognize either of my drives now.

    Someone please help me. I just reset the PRAM and then my Mac Pro wouldn't start up at all! It would just hang there and then reboot on it's own! So then I shut it down and pulled the cables off the Lacie drive and then it booted up fine... my eject key works now and my Sony drive is recognized. What am I doing wrong with the other drive? How do I know which jumper setting to use? Please help, I'm almost there!

    I figured it out. I had to change the jumper over to the middle. I tried it and now both drives work perfectly. I tested a CD in each drive and then I burned with the new drive. So... success!!! Woot! I love it! My system seems to be running find now, no problems so far. Also, my new RAM is running great too.

    Quick question about RAM... when I boot up, should my RAM already be using 500MB? Anyways... it's working good.

    I have a problem again. I was watching a DVD in the new drive and I paused it for quite some time (long enough for the DVD to stop spinning) then I went to quit DVD Player and it locked up completely. So I tried ejecting the disc from the Finder and the Finder locked up. Then everything locked up until I had to restart.

    I have both drives set to Cable Select and they're both supported by Mac OS X. I don't understand why it would do that. Any help is appreciated. (This is the second time it's done it and it's the same DVD)

    Update (as if people are actually reading this thread):

    I did some more research and I found out that it appears to be a problem with this specific drive by NEC. Apparently it's supposed to be the Master drive and not a slave or cable select drive. No matter what I do, it stops responding after a spin down. So I decided to just live with it and only use it for copying CDs or DVDs or for using only for a short time so that the drive doesn't spin down. Besides, the top drive is the one I use all the time and the secondary drive should only be needed for special projects, so I'm not too upset about it. At least it's being used now and not just sitting there on a desk collecting dust.

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