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Thursday, June 2, 2011

Set Jumpers on Multiple Hard Drives


PATA (IDE) hard disk drive controllers allow one or two drives to be connected to the same controller using a hard drive cable with three connectors. The controller can be used to set one drive to the "Master" setting and the other drive to the "Slave" setting. This is done by jumpers interchange and by the location of the drive on the data cable on other computers. Learn how to set the jumpers correctly.

1). Turn off the computer and unplug the power source from the system before working with the drive configuration jumpers or cables.
2). Disconnect the data cable and power cable from the hard drives and remove the hard disk drives from the computer case and from any hard disk drive bracket.

3). Determine which drive is going to be the primary hard drive on a particular data cable. Mostly the primary hard drive is the boot device for a computer when only two drives are installed. Designate the second drive as the secondary drive for the same cable.

4). Review the hard drive jumper setting diagram, which is printed on the drive or the small markings near the configuration jumpers, to determine "Master," "Slave" and "Cable Select" settings for each drive. This can vary by drive manufacturer or model. Further information will be available from the hard drive manufacturer's website or the owner's manual for the drive.

5). Set the jumper setting on the primary hard drive to "Master" and the secondary hard drive to "Slave" by sliding the jumpers off the drive and replacing them in the position indicated by the diagram.

6). Install the hard drives into the computer case in a manner that allows the primary drive to connect to the end of the dual hard drive data cable and the secondary drive to connect to the middle connector on the cable. The other end of the hard drive data cable will be connected to the motherboard or hard drive controller.

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