I have recently taken my grandma's old pc apart, and have salvaged various parts, including the 20 GB Maxtor quantom fireball PATA HDD. I have my current dvd read/writer and hdd setup on the pata plug, and don't want to use my floppy disk pata plug (unused because I lost my cable). So I have bought a bi-directional PATA to SATA adaptor off amazon. but I am wondering, what do I set the Slave/master jumper settings to for this installation?
With SATA you only have one drive per cable. I assume that your converter fits in with 99% of them and that it converts between one PATA drive and one SATA interface.
On the PATA side: If it is the sole drive (and it will be) set to SINGLE or MASTER/SINGLE.
Long background: (You can skip this).
When we where young and had to walk up hill to school, both ways. Always against the wind .... there used to be hard drive, controllers for the hard drives and the rest of the computer. These where three separate items.
You needed to buy a controller which fit in your computer. (expensive) and a hard drive (also expensive). After a while someone build a drive with the controller integrated into the drive. This was more expansive than building just a drive, but a lot cheaper than building both a drive and a controller. This was a drive with Integrated Drive Electronics. (IDE).
To connect an IDE drive to a computer you needed either an AT bus (AT as in the ISA bus from a 286 area computer) or yet another expensive second controller. (for anything without an ISA bus). This is the reason it sometimes is called AT Attachement. This used parallel communication, and to avoid confusion with the newer Serial ATA standard we often write it as PATA.
If you plugged two drives on a (P)ATA/IDE cable both controllers could get in a fight. Both trying to drive data over the cable. Therefor you needed to tell the controller if it was the sole drive, or if there was another drive. If there was another drive then one of them had to be the master, controlling both drives.
Master and slave protocols seemed to differ between manufacturers. Sometimes you needed to set a drive (e.g. a 200MB Conor) as master and the other as slave. Reversing that would not work. Usually it just was trial and error. Eventually things got standarized and compatability improved. Some people kept to the standard (e.g. WD), most of them fiddled a bit and ended up with only two modes: Master of slave. In their case 'master' means 'try to find a slave on the cable, if found set master mode, else work as single'
(end of background)
One more thing though:
If more than one PATA device is on the same chain one is set to Master, one is set to slave. When only one is on the chain, it is set to Master. Assuming the CD/DVD drive is on the PATA chain, try the HD as a slave. If it doesn't show up in BIOS, change the HD to Master. It won't "hurt" your system if this is set incorrectly, it just won't work.