PATA DVD on Asus P5Q Pro

Dieter freebsd at
Thu Jan 8 21:06:44 PST 2009

> The PATA-133/IDE interface is implemented via an additional Marvell
> 88SE6111 controller (SATA is driven via ICH10R).
> My problem is that the DVD drive is not seen by FreeBSD, although it
> is seen by the BIOS in the boot up phase.  In the previous post Jeremy
> Chadwick kindly pointed out that the Marvell 88SE6111controller may
> not be supported by FreeBSD.  I was wondering if this is still the
> case with the 7.1 Release

You could try looking at the online ata(4) man page for 7.1 and see if the
controller is listed.

You could see if NetBSD or OpenBSD supports the controller and if so look
into porting the support over to FreeBSD.

> and whether somebody could suggest a
> workaround that does not involve replacing the drive (e.g., is it
> possible to use some sort of converter cable from SATA to PATA?  I
> apologize if this is complete nonsense, but I know virtually nothing
> about buses and connector types).

They make chips that bridge between SATA and PATA.
Chips: JM20330, SIL3611, Marvell 88SA8040
They make small boards with these chips, intended to plug into a
drive and then provide the other type connector.  Some have
mounting holes, so you could use both a SATA and PATA cable and mount
the board somewhere.  The boards run US$8-30.  Make sure the board
can operate in the direction you need it to (SATA controller to PATA
drive).  Some boards have a jumper for this but some don't.  Make
sure the board has the correct gender PATA connector.  The gender of
the SATA connector isn't critical.  If a normal cable doesn't work you
can get a SATA "extension" cable.

If you have a free PCIe slot (any size), the JMicron JMB363 provides
2 SATA ports and 1 PATA channel.  FreeBSD suports the JMB363.  These
cards run US$10.50-$14.  I'm sure there are a bunch of other PATA
controller cards you could use.  See the ata(4) man page.

There are USB to SATA/PATA bridges available.  $15 or so.  I'm not fond
of these as they tend to be slow, and I haven't found one that allows
turning off the disk write cache.  For a CD/DVD drive you might not

There are firewire to PATA bridges available.  One of these is buggy,
but there might be chips that work properly.

There are SCSI to PATA bridges available.

If you want to be able to boot from CD/DVD, some of these options
might not work, depending on the firmware on your mainboard.

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