If you have devices attached to the secondary IDE controller using any version of Windows, devices, typically CD-ROMs can disappear. This is an all too common problem often appearing after upgrading or re-installing a Windows version. Finding good information is next to impossible. Numerous fixes for this abound, but most fail.
The primary cause of this phenomenon can be traced to the Intel chipsets found in most computers. After a while, they alter the files that allow the chipsets to communicate with the processor and devices on the secondary IDE controller.
To fix this issue, it is necessary to go to the Intel site and read up on the issue. You will need one of several updates available depending upon your particular chipset and the version of Windows you are using.
Search the "chipset" support area for BMIDE.EXE or the System Configuration Update Utility V3.3.02 or one of several others. This should allow you to re-install a new set of IDE files or to troubleshoot your unique problem.
You may also want to read the Microsoft article entitled, "Devices not detected with the Intel 82371SB PIIX3 controller." The article number is PSS ID Q156940. Though various Intel chipsets have a history of problems, this issue is largely ignored by makers of computers that use the Intel chipsets.
About the author: This tip was written by Rick Foster.
This was first published in February 2001