For parallel port to IDE devices, known as parallel IDE, I am wondering if there is a parallel cable standard? Or if standard parallel cables should work?
Background: A friend bought an Imation LS-120 SuperDrive. It's an IDE parallel model. Unfortunately, it only came with a power supply and a short drive dongle for parallel. It didn't include a full parallel cable to actually connect it to a parallel port. The dongle looks to be a micro centronics to parallel port adapter. So cannot be plugged into a parallel port directly and must be plugged in through a cable. It looks like a later model where they moved some electronics outside.
I managed to source a straight through D25M to D25M parallel cable I had hoped would work. So that I can actually plug it into a parallel port. But I cannot get it to work.
So this makes me wonder if there is a parallel cable standard for IDE that needs specific wiring or electronics or it simply will not work. Given the dongle is customised for that model leads me to believe it used a propriety parallel cable as well. But I cannot find any information on any parallel standards with modified wiring.
Testing: To confirm the drive does work I connected it without data cables to power supply. The drive turns on. When a disk is inserted it reads it. When ejected it pops it out. So basic drive mechanism is working.
When I connect it up and plug the parallel cable into a parallel port the drive goes dead. When switched on the drive acts dead. If I the unplug the cable from the parallel port it works again. It also works if just the dongle is connected. So for some reason it doesn't actually like being plugged into a parallel port.
Unfortunately I am limited with what computer hardware I can test it with. A desktop PC under the desk has no parallel port or I would have let Windows figure it out. The only computer I have with a parallel port is an uncommon PPC board based on a MAI Teron. I did however compile a custom Linux kernel with paride modules included to test. But they could not detect any device. I had hoped if there was some software protocol needed the driver would do what it needs to do and switch the drive on. But I saw no change. It uses epat protocol.
Conclusion: Apart from concentrating on the LS-120 my question was about generic parallel to IDE. Though each has parallel protocol is different. But the question remains if parallel to IDE cables have their own standard with internal electronics or electrical characteristics?