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[ The PC Guide | Systems and Components Reference Guide | Hard Disk Drives | Hard Disk Interfaces and Configuration | Small Computer Systems Interface (SCSI) | SCSI Host Adapters ]

Drivers and Compatibility Issues

It's important to ensure that your operating system will support whatever host adapter you decide to use. Selecting a quality card from a well-known company is key to success in many cases. You want to make sure that the card comes with configuration software and drivers that will support whatever operating system and applications you are using. Most well-known cards will either be supported natively in Windows (and other operating systems) or will be provided with good drivers.

There are, in rare cases, problems with compatibility between older devices and cards, due to some loose interpretations of the SCSI standards. This has been pretty much cleaned up with the newer devices, however. Other compatibility difficulties may result from the mixing of devices using different types of SCSI transfer modes or feature sets; see here for more details.

Warning: One thing that is important to know is that different SCSI host adapters may use different addressing or translating methods to access data on hard disks to which they are connected. This means that switching host adapters can render the contents of the hard disk inaccessible. In some cases the disk must be reformatted after the new host adapter is installed. See here for more on this.

Next: Manual vs. Automatic Configuration

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