First of all I would not buy an IDE drive. I would buy a SATA drive for the
same money. It is easy to buy a SATA enclosure that supports both SATA and
USB 2.0 cables and have the flexibility of using the set with your next
computer's eSATA port (the transfer rate is more than 7 times faster than
with usb2) as well as with a usb port on your present machine.
The IDE controller is in firmware on your motherboard. There are no drivers
that you would install for it. In any case, the drive will not be seen as
an IDE drive by your computer when it is mounted in a usb enclosure. It
will be seen by the computer as a usb mass storage device. The type of
drive does not matter to the computer when mounted that way. It is the
drive enclosure has the contoller in it and that is when the type of drive
The problem I think you are describing concerning mixing PATA (IDE) and SATA
drives only pertained to installing Vista on a machine that had both SATA
and PATA drives internally. Vista Setup preferred to write the BDC store on
the PATA drive regardless of which drive was used as "C:". The advice was
to force the BCD store to be written to the C: drive by disconnecting the
PATA drive before installation. Once Vista was installed without a PATA
drive, the PATA drive could be connected again without any further issues.
Since a drive in an external usb drive enclosure is not using your
computer's internal IDE or SATA controllers but simply transferring data
over the usb bus it makes no difference to the computer what the drive is
inside the enclosure.
"Sirboy" <Sirboy.firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote in message
> Hi Colin,
> Thanks for the reply. The re-installation of Vista comment was meant
> for Vista to recognize an IDE drive that I pulled from my XP box. I read
> that when you install Vista on a box with SATA drives only and then add
> and IDE drive after installing Vista, that Vista doesn't install the IDE
> drivers. I'm getting my info mixed up after reading too much .
> Is there an advantage to buying an internal IDE drive and sticking it
> into a hdd enclosure as oppose to just buying an external hard drive?