Those old IDE drives..

cheeserandyburg

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 3, 2011
19
0
Found an OLD "Quantum" 2.5GB (yes you read that right :D ) IDE drive laying around the house. Dates back to 1995/97 or so..

Here's the thing, I don't have any enclosures that support IDE drives, only SATA. In addition, the "jumpers" that usually come with a IDE drives aren't present. It's just the drive I have.

So, my question is. I know that these IDE drives use these so called "jumpers" for setting them slave/master, etc. Problem is, I don't have a darn clue how important that is. If I were to hook up my IDE drive I'd simply buy an IDE to USB enclosure, hook the IDE plug up to the drive, power it up and off i'd go. Are these jumper settings really that important if I just wanna use this drive as an external to take a peep into?

I wanna be able to take a look into this ancient metallic contraption :D

Any tips on how to do this?

Also is there any risk of infecting a mac with using one of these things? I have no idea if this drive is infected (spyware, viruses).
 
Last edited:

Intell

macrumors P6
Jan 24, 2010
18,881
368
Inside
Most enclosures want the drive to be in single or master mode. Some drives are in single/master mode with all jumpers removed. You'll have to look at the drive's label or circuit board to determine what the proper jumper settings are. If you don't have any jumpers, you can also slightly bend two of the pins together so that they'll change the drive's mode.
 

cheeserandyburg

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 3, 2011
19
0
What impact would it have if i had the drive in either slave or master mode? Would the MAC recognize it differently? Afterall, its a seperate harddrive with Windows 95 on it, meaning its been formatted in Fat32 most likely.

If the drive gets connected to an enclosure using only the IDE connector and power and then gets turned on, the Mac would detect it either way regardless of the jumper settings, or no? Correct me if I'm wrong..this is confusing :confused:

Gonna take a wild stab at this and guess that the "master drive" is the main one INSIDE my Mac... and anything i connect to that computer (drive wise) is a slave drive unless I state otherwise.. Would seem logical to me.
 

Intell

macrumors P6
Jan 24, 2010
18,881
368
Inside
Modern Macs use SATA drives that do not have a master/slave mode. Drives in an enclosures are not registers with a computer's internal IDE bus and thus is does not matter what the computer's internal drive configuration is. Most enclosures' internal IDE to USB circuity only work with IDE drives set to master. If you put a slave drive in one of these enclosures, it won't be seen by the host computer.
 

takeshi74

macrumors 601
Feb 9, 2011
4,972
68
Are these jumper settings really that important if I just wanna use this drive as an external to take a peep into?
Yes -- for reasons already stated above. The jumpers for master/slave setting on IDE drives wasn't just put on for fun. They were necessary due to the way the IDE interface works. The drive needs to be jumpered the way the enclosure requires it to be set.

Gonna take a wild stab at this and guess that the "master drive" is the main one INSIDE my Mac... and anything i connect to that computer (drive wise) is a slave drive unless I state otherwise.. Would seem logical to me.
Be careful with assumptions even if you call them "logic". ;)

Also is there any risk of infecting a mac with using one of these things? I have no idea if this drive is infected (spyware, viruses).
There's always a risk. The actual odds? Probably slim to none. You'll probably have to partition and format the drive anyway.