September 4, 2006
I noticed when I was burning the Vista RC1 DVD that ..
- It took forever, eg, nearly an hour
- My PC was very sluggish during the burn
I began to suspect something was awry with the IDE controller that the DVD-R drive is connected to. I navigated to Device Manager, expanded the IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers tree node, right-clicked the Parallel ATA Controller node and selected properties.
And what do I find on the Secondary Channel tab? Sure enough, Transfer mode downgraded.
This behavior is, of course, by design. Microsoft automatically downgrades the transfer mode on a Parallel or Serial ATA channel after receiving more than six CRC errors on that channel. At least you can see when this has happened-- Microsoft provides the little yellow alert pictured above, along with some alerts in the system Event Log.
CRC errors are very dangerous for a hard drive-- that means you've got some serious hardware problems. But for a DVD or CD drive, it probably just means you tried to read a scratched disc. You can override this obnoxious behavior in the registry.
I flipped the switch back to "Let BIOS select transfer mode", rebooted, and I was on my way:
However, depending on what Windows XP has decided to do here, you may need to uninstall the channel (just right-click it in Device Manager to do this). Don't worry, uninstalling won't cause any problems. Just reboot and the channel will be redetected with default settings.
To illustrate how important proper PATA/SATA transfer mode settings are, here's how long it took to burn a Vista RC1 DVD on my PC before and after:
in PIO mode: 56 minutes.
in Ultra DMA 2 mode: 4 minutes.
Friends don't let friends use Programmed I/O Mode.
Posted by Jeff Atwood
Interesting looking IDE channel config box. It's obviously not what's in the hardware manager; is it some nifty tool you're going to share with us all?
Hmmm... I ran into something similar a couple of days ago.
So did this occur on Vista for your or on XP?
I checked my settings in Vista and the dialogs don't allow these options, but I do see DMA Mode enabled on both devices.
"Interesting looking IDE channel config box. It's obviously not what's in the hardware manager; is it some nifty tool you're going to share with us all?"
I get those exact screens here on a vanilla XP install and turns out I had the same issue. Did you follow his directions for getting there?
I have XP Pro SP2 on a PC with a motherboard-integrated Intel Ultra ATA controller, and Device Manager - IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers offers nothing like this. I can't see any way to determine or change the transfer mode at all. There is no dialog with a "Secondary Channel" tab.
It may be that the drivers for some controllers offer features that others do not.
I believe the dialog pictured is based on the nVidia nForce chipset drivers..
I just checked on a web server here, and I see a similar (though not identical dialog) under the Primary IDE Channel. In the properties dialog for the Primary IDE Channel there's an "Advanced Settings" tab which has the current transfer mode and a drop-down menu which lets me change the DMA mode.
That's based on the "Intel 82801EB Ultra ATA Storage Controllers".
I think it was 2000 where PIO was selected by default on CD-ROM drives.