THE WINDOWS 95 DEVICE MANAGER 
(CONT)


CD-Rom Drive:

Generally, if you were able to install Windows 95 along with all of the necessary  drivers after the initial installation, seeing a CD-Rom drive error in Device Manager afterwards is unusual at best, but it does happen.

In these instances, check the following:

  • Make sure that the power cable is securely connected.

  • Make sure that the ribbon cable from the motherboard to the CD-Rom drive is securely in place on both the motherboard and the drive and that "Pin #1" on the ribbon cable (denoted by a red stripe along the edge of the cable) is attached to "Pin #1" on both the motherboard and the CD Rom drive.

  • Boot the system to the Windows 95 Startup Boot Disk that you made with your CD Rom drivers on it. Insert the Windows 95 CD into the drive and then try running a directory of the CD. You would do this by changing to the CD Rom drive letter (X:<enter>) with "X" representing the driver letter assigned when you booted to the startup disk. Now type DIR<enter>. This should run a directory of the CD's contents if the drive is working. If this fails, and you have checked and verified the connections, in all probability the drive has failed physically. If, on the other hand, you are able to run a directory, then it may be because Windows has loaded the incorrect driver for the CD Rom drive. In this case, go into Device Manager, expand the CD Rom drive device area, click on the CD Rom entry and click "Remove". Now restart the system into Windows 95 and test the drive again.

  • Another possibility is that of verifying whether or not the IDE bus to which the CD Rom drive is attached is working properly!

Hard Drives:

Hard drive errors in Device Manager can occur for a number of reasons. If you have opened your computers case recently, we cannot stress too strongly the need to check and then recheck all of the physical connections to the drive before doing anything else. Here's is a checklist to work through to resolve hard drive problems in Device Manager:

  • Shut the computer off and unplug the power cord. Now check to make certain that the ribbon cable is securely connected to the drive and the motherboard. If you have had the drive out of the case, or you have removed the ribbon cables for any reason, double check to make sure that the connector is secured properly. It is not difficult to inadvertently miss or bend the last two pins on either end of the drive connector when attaching the ribbon cable connector to the drive.

  • Check and verify that you have the drive(s) correctly positioned on the ribbon cable. Below you will find a sample picture of a typical hard drive ribbon cable for the installation of two drives on a single IDE bus channel. Note the red and blue arrows. The single connector that is farthest from the other connectors (denoted by the red arrow) is always connected to the motherboard. Although you cannot see it in this picture, IDE and Floppy Drive ribbon cables have a red tracing stripe along one edge. This indicates to you where "Pin #1" is located on the cable. Therefore when plugging this end into the motherboard, always position the connector so that "Pin #1" on the ribbon cable is aligned with "Pin #1" on the motherboard. The connectors indicated by the blue arrows are for the drive(s) only, and typically each ribbon cable will have two drive connectors grouped together at one end. If you review the picture, you will see that the cable has been folded at one end to shorten it for this picture. If you were to unfold it, you would see that the two drive connectors are grouped to one end.

  • When connecting the ribbon cable to the hard drive, as was the case with the motherboard connection, always connect "Pin #1" of the ribbon cable to "Pin #1" on the hard drive. Typically, "Pin #1" on the hard drive is nearest the power connector as noted in the picture below. A single drive using this dual-drive ribbon cable must be attached to the last connector on the end. If there is a second hard drive, or "slave", it is attached to the middle connector. Some systems permit a single drive to be connected to the center connector, however it is customary to put the first physical drive at the end, and any slave on the center connector.

  • If you have had the hard drive out for any reason, or have added a new drive or even rearranged the drives in the computer case, make sure that the small jumpers at the back of the drive have been positioned correctly. Most drives have jumpers to select a default setting (single or only drive on this cable), "Master" or "Slave" if there are two drives on a single cable. Please refer to your specific drive specifications for this information. In most cases this drive select information can be found on the drive itself.

  • The next issue involves what is typically referred to as Fast ATA 66 or Ultra ATA 66 drives. These new drives require a special ATA 66 ribbon cable which while still using a 40 pin IDE connector, it contains 80 wires instead of 40. These ribbon cables must only be used with motherboards and hard drives that support Fast ATA 66 or Ultra ATA 66.

  • While it is difficult to see in this picture, each connector has a small lug in the center for alignment purposes. Additionally, the Blue Connector as denoted by the red arrow, must be connected to the first ATA 66 port on the motherboard. The black connector (Blue Arrow) at the opposite end must be connected to the first physical ATA 66 hard drive. The second connector "gray" (middle Blue Arrow) must be connected to the second physical (slave) ATA 66 drive. In addition, you cannot mix ATA 66 and non-ATA 66 hard drives on the same channel on most motherboards. Although we have been told that these new cables will not fit older motherboards, we have determined this information to be misleading as some motherboards will accept these cables.

  • If, after having reviewed all of the above and have checked to make sure that you have all of the cables connected properly and that the drives are jumpered correctly, and an error remains in Device Manager, there are a few other possibilities other than a physical drive problem.

  • During the Windows 95 installation process, should Windows incur any problems at all in loading correct IDE controller drivers or a 32-bit protected mode driver, it will load a MS-DOS Compatibility Mode driver to permit the drives to function. While this severely hampers the performance if the hard drive(s), it does allow the system to function and provides you with an opportunity to correct whatever is wrong with the hardware. Generally this information will be found when you go into Device Manager, expand the drive area and then check the properties for the drive.

  • If the drives are operating in MS-DOS Compatibility Mode, and you have checked your hardware and made any necessary corrections, there is a procedure to be followed that will move the drives out of MS-DOS Compatibility Mode. Briefly, when this occurs, Windows inserts an entry into the registry (NOIDE). This entry can be removed manually through a registry entry change or by use of an INF tool supplied by Microsoft.

  • You can click on this hyperlink to take you directly to that procedure.

  • If you would prefer using the NOIDE.INF tool to change this entry for you, then click on this hyperlink and then look for NOIDE.INF and follow the procedures outlined therein.

Display Adapters:

  • Display Adapters, more commonly referred to as video cards, rarely indicate this type of error, as when Windows 95 loads it includes drivers for most of the more popular (and even not so popular) video cards. If it doesn't completely recognize all of the features of you video card, it will load a basic driver set. Keep in mind that this is a basic trouble shooter and is not intended to fit ever conceivable video card installation. If we have installed a special card for you, or one with more than just basic features, such as TV in/out etcetera, then you may want to contact technical support directly.

  • If an error appears in Device Manager next to your Display Adapter (video card), more than likely it is due to a driver that either was not included with Windows 95 and needs to be added separately, or the driver that was installed has been damaged or corrupted and needs to be replaced.

  • On occasion Windows 95 will load the incorrect driver for a video card that will either cause an error in Device Manager or you won't be able to adjust your video settings (or both). This is normally caused by the identifier on the card not reporting its characteristics correctly to the Windows 95 hardware installation interrogation module. This can occur as well if there is a physical problem with the video card.

  • Regardless of the reason, the first place to start is in the video adapter settings section in control panel. Right click on the desktop, and then choose "Properties". When the properties page opens click on the "Advanced" button. Now click on the "Adapter" tab and verify that the video adapter shown is the one installed in your computer. If it isn't, then change it to what is installed. If it is set correctly, then reinstall the driver for your particular video card.

  • You can change drivers either by using the installer that comes with the video cards drivers, or change it via "Control Panel", "System" icon and then the "Device Manager" tab. Expand the Video Adapter section, and then look for the drivers section and update the driver.

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