Guide to Building A Computer v2.0

Step9: Cable Installation

The first thing to do before installing the system cables is to establish which plugs go where and the way the cables attach to the drives. There is usually a little tab that sticks out of the IDE cable telling you the correct direction the cable installs. If your cable does not have the tab look for the red wire on the cable that signifies it as pin one.

Locate your IDE 1 and 2 connections on the motherboard. The primary IDE connection is usually colored with the included cables on most of the newer made boards. The hard drive should be plugged into the primary IDE channel and the CD and slave drive (If applicable) connect to the secondary IDE channel.
The 1.44 Floppy disc drive only has one place to connect on the board so this should not pose a problem. One thing to note on the floppy drive though, if when the system is started the floppy light remains on the cable needs to be reversed on the back of the floppy drive. This is a common mistake and easy to fix.

Make sure to connect all the power leads to the appropriate drives and then check all the connections to make sure they are in all the way. Both the power and data cables will not read the drives if not plugged in correctly. Always try and use new cables if possible as this will most likely ensure you have a working cable and help speed along the assembly process. I prefer the new round cables as they offer better air circulation inside the case as well as being much more eye friendly and space saving.