Intel Web Page Intel Chipset and Driver Support

About these pages.

In response to all the emails and newsgroup postings I end up responding to regarding AGP conflicts, bus mastering IDE drivers and support for various Intel chipsets, I've decided to post all the information on GWeb. Most of the information on this page comes directly from Intel, specifically the excellent Troubleshooting Common System Configuration Issues document they've published. Check out the following links for each of the GWeb Intel pages.

Identifying Intel - how to identify your Intel chipset and/or processor.
INF Installation Utility - what it's for, addressing the AGP memory conflict, and downloads.
Pentium 4 - some specific software and information for Pentium 4 owners and upgrades.
Bus Master IDE Drivers - what they're for, removing the drivers under '95 and '98, and downloads.
Troubleshooting document - download.

Bus Master IDE Drivers

This one has caused a lot of confusion over the years ... whether to install Intel's bus master IDE driver or not. The whole thing started because Intel built logic into their 430 and 440 chipsets which basically reduce the load on your CPU when reading or writing data to IDE disk drives. As with the INF updates, earlier versions of Windows 95 simply didn't know how to 'talk' to these features, so Intel released their own bus master IDE drivers to solve the problem. Consequently, you only need the Intel bus master IDE driver if you're running versions 4.00.950 or 4.00.950a of Windows.

All versions of Windows from '95 OSR 2.0 onwards (that's 4.00.950b and later) already have bus mastering IDE drivers (from Microsoft) built in. Both Intel and Microsoft state that the drivers built into '95 OSR 2.0 and later should be used for the most efficient drive performance. If you're running an UltraDMA/33 hard disk drive, check out page 18 of the Troubleshooting document, which describes how to enable bus mastering using the native Microsoft drivers.

If you're using a Pentium III- or 4-based system and have an Ultra ATA drive, you'll want to use Intels' Application Accelerator.

Which Windows ...?

To work out which version of Windows you're running, either right-click your My Computer icon and select Properties or select the 'System' item from the Control Panel; the System Properties window that's presented will show your System version. These versions can be 'translated' as follows:

Windows... Version Also known as...
Windows 95 4.00.950 Original retail version
4.00.950a OSR 1, and the original retail version with Service Pack 1 installed
4.00.950b OSR 2.0 without the USB supplement, and OSR2.1 with the USB supplement
4.00.950c OSR 2.5
Windows 98 4.10.1998 Original retail version
Windows 98 Second Edition 4.10.2222 Original retail version
Windows Me (Millennium Edition) 4.90.3000 Original retail version
Windows 2000 5.00.2195 Original retail version
Windows XP 5.10.2526 Release Candidate 2

Removing the Drivers

If you've previously installed the Intel Bus Master IDE Driver and need to remove it - for example, you're going to upgrade to Windows 98, which doesn't need the driver, then simply run the Setup program from the Windows 95 driver and select 'de-install'. This procedure will also work within Windows 98 (if you've already upgraded). If you think you need to remove the driver, or you're just not sure, grab a copy of the Troubleshooting document and check out pages 15 onward - it should answer any questions you have.

Intel Resources

So, if you're running 4.00.950 or 4.00.950a, here are the links you'll need to get hold of the drivers from Intel.

Intel Bus Master IDE Driver Pages

Bus Master Driver A complete overview of the Intel Bus Master IDE Driver v3.02, for Windows 95.
Windows 95 Driver The software license agreement for the Intel Bus Master IDE Driver v3.02, with the link to download the driver at the bottom of the page.