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2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

penneck
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Registered: 03-08-2007

2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

I am trying to convert two slim CD Drives (yes CD not DVD) to have 40-way IDE interfaces - I cant use SATA or USB - dont ask - one knock-on leads to another, and then to another, etc, which is why I have to use these CD Drives, and with 40-way IDE.
Someone has loaned me a little adaptor board which converts the interface on one of these drives to a normal 40-way IDE interface plus a small power connector, but the adaptor board doesn't fit the other CD. The two interfaces on these CD drives are similar to each other, but one is a bit longer than the other (I haven't studied either interface in detail, but I guess they are about 20 to 30 mm long but one is about 5mm longer than the other). The person who loaned me the adaptor cannot tell me what either CD interface is. This is a shame because I want to buy adaptor boards for each of these drives.
If anyone has an idea how these two CD drive interfaces are identified, I would be very grateful to hear from them.
My thanks
17 REPLIES
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

Are there any identifying marks on the drives. Make and model number etc?
I'm looking for something for Google to get it's teeth into.

Customer and Forum Moderator.

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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

You can buy a (fat) DVD RW drive with a standard IDE interface for under £20.  At that price, why buy adaptor boards? 
Slim drives are designed for laptops so usually use the laptop version of an IDE connector but this is standard so I have no idea what connector your other drive has.
wisty
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

Take a hard look at both drives. I suspect the one that doesn't fit is in a carrier for a particular laptop and already has some sort of adapter installed. Check the length and shape of the two drives. One will probably be slightly longer than the other. That's the one with the adapter fitted. Side rails and screws on the back edge are a good clue.
penneck
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

The two slim drives are both Panasonic UJDA360, but one just says UJDA360, while the other says UJDA360 DL4-Z. They are physically identical to each other apart from that connector. The connectors are similar but not the same, one being  a bit longer than the other. I have been able to find nothing on the web to identify the connectors.
ReedRichards - The equipment they are to be mounted in wont take a fat DVD drive, so no matter what the price, I have to stay with these Panasonics. I have to keep these equipments working. I cannot connect an external drive. I have to use NT4 as the operating system because of the knock-on to other equipment in my system, and you cant get NT4 drivers for new DVD drives, so I need to identify the two connectors on these drives so that I can get the correct adaptors.
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

Photos might help?
Lurker
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

Pray tell, for what do you need two CD drives in a single system for?
If its for the reading of a couple of CDs that aren't going to change, the NT version of DaemonTools would possibly solve the issue - simply grab the image of each CD and copy to HDD, then simply mount them in DaemonTools and assign the appropriate drive letter.

Alternatively, Virtualise the damn thing, and then you will be able to use USB or external drives without any issue. (VMWare ESXi is free, even for commercial use, and the licence terms for NT4 do not deny you the right to virtualise an OEM version to run on the same hardware as you originally purchased it with,so there is not much of a barrier.)
penneck
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

I am just trying to identify what these interfaces are. I have two laptop-type CD drives with different interfaces. I'm not trying to get round using these CD drives. I want to find out about their interfaces. The equipment they are to be used in doesn't take two of these drives, only one. This equipment is a server which was not from a mass production sort of manufacturer. It was from a specialist designer and manufacturer (not me) who has gone out of business. I have to keep this equipment working - no ifs, no buts, no change to a new server. The server has to use NT4 because of the rest of the system (don't ask, I don't understand either, but software experts I know tell me I have to stay with NT4) and I cant get NT4 drivers for new equipment.
One of these drives is from the server, and it is faulty. The other drive was my attempt to replace the faulty one, but it has a slightly different interface. The adaptor was an attempt to help me identify the type of interface and also test the first drive (confirmed faulty), but while it confirmed one interface was probably a standard interface of some kind, it didn't actually help me identify that interface. As for the other interface, it is a slightly different length (about 5mm difference). I need to obtain a drive that has the same interface as the faulty drive. If every time I buy a drive I am going to get yet another interface, then this is going to be very expensive, so PLEASE, just answer the question "What are these two interfaces?"
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

If, as Santiago posted, you provide pictures it might help
Community Veteran
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

Quote from: penneck
I am trying to convert two slim CD Drives (yes CD not DVD) to have 40-way IDE interfaces

Ask a silly question, get a silly answer.  What you are ACTUALLY trying to do is get a replacement CD drive to match an interface you cannot identify.
There are only two interfaces on standard slim CD drives, SATA and PATA (both IDE).  SATA (Serial ATA) is too new for your equipment and doesn't match your description at all.  PATA (Parallel ATA) is the interface that I presume you got on your attempted replacement and which fits your adaptor.  Sometimes the PATA  pins are fitted with a male-to-female converter (although I have only seen this done on PATA hard drives) but this is removable.  All laptop PATA interfaces I have ever seen have been the same and there is only one type currently offered for sale.
I wonder if your old CD drive has a form of SCSI interface?  AFAIK SCSI and IDE are different standards and the interfaces are certainly different.  SCSI was a popular choice for servers but has now gone out of use,  You could always try second hand, eBay for example.
Community Veteran
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

The software configuration inside NT would enable you to determine which interface it was which would be a very useful start.
As explained above it's most likely SCSI or PATA. There are several SCSI variants though.
Are there not other means of connecting devices to the system, e.g. spare ports or add-in cards? Old NT-compatible kit won't be that hard to find (eventually).
Here's one example of the model you quoted: http://www.sunvalleyus.com/MiscCDDVDBurner/UJDA360.html
I note it says E-IDE, so not SCSI then.  Wink
VileReynard
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

If it's SCSI, and a slim drive, that would be weird (and expensive).
All SCSI variants with the exception of the HVD (High-Voltage-Differential) are inter-operable,
with fall back to the speed of the slowest SCSI bus.
A SCSI drive will very likely have a number of jumper settings...
It will also have a terminator "block" across the end of the cable.
Finally, SCSI usually has a 50, 68 or 80 pin connector Smiley which may
be ribbon or a round cable.
How about a parallel port if it's really ancient?

wisty
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

A quick google for UJDA360 DL4-Z brought up pictures at http://www.impactcomputers.com/6r955.html of a CD drive for Dell's Inspiron 2600 & Inspiron 2650. Whereas a simple UJDA360 brought up loads of standard CD drives. I "suspect" but without pictures I can't be sure that the interface on the one marked as straight UJDA360 is the standard IDE/ATA interface for slimline CD drives. Pretty much any slimline CD/DVD drive will have this interface. If they are designed for some specific laptop they will usually have a standard drive in a casing (my old Compaq laptop has such a set-up - extract the drive, remove the "rails" and adapter, fit them to the new drive and reinstall -  away it goes). The other one (the UJDA360 DL4-Z)  looks to be a DELL proprietary special (they are reasonably well known for this trick). If they bought them in sufficient quantity then they may have had them manufactured with a non standard interface rather than an adapter (although I would be very tempted to attack any visible screws before assuming that ) - if that's the interface you have to have then you will need a big chequebook. If you can live with either, then bin (or e-bay for lots of money to another desperate soul) the DL4-Z.  CD drives that match the straight UJDA360 are very cheap and standard. Almost any make/model will be compatible.
wisty
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

A quick follow up having re-read the original post.
If the adapter you have fits the UJDA360 but not the DL4-Z that would confirm things. The adapter will be designed to fit a standard CD drive. The likelihood of finding an adapter for the DELL special is probably close to zero.
Note the phraseology from the link offered by HPSauce
"BARE drive only.  Existing parts on your drive may be needed for installation. Adapters / CADDYs / Mounting brackets or rails are not included."
That is the usual situation. The drives are standard and the Adapters / CADDYs / Mounting brackets or rails are add-ons. DELL however may be different!!!
Lurker
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Re: 2 different Slim CD Drive Interfaces

Dell often use their proprietory 'expansion' connector for such things, as it enables them to fit the same connectors to a multitude of drives to all fit in the same caddys, expansion bays, docking stations etc.
We had an issue with an old server which had to be scrapped for want of a cable to reconnect a slim drive to the motherboard.