I've got an IDE (PATA) cable which has a small black box attached to it via cable: IDE cable with attachment box

The box features a set of Molex power connectors and a small connector labeled H.D.D. LED, just like those which are usually connecting the computer case's LEDs, power buttons etc. Besides the Sharkoon logo and a Q.C. passed sticker, there are no further labels on the box.

I'm wondering what the purpose of this box might be. Since I have no idea how such an extension is called, I didn't have any success yet in finding any information about it on the web.

Also, is it save to cut off the attachment box? I don't think I'd have any use for it, so it is just unwanted clutter. The IDE cable works fine without the box's connectors plugged into anything, but I'm not sure if cutting the small black cable might have any negative effects.

  • 1
    I would contact the company they still exist. Cutting cables seems like a horrible idea. – Ramhound Feb 26 '14 at 13:02

This is a light controller that is activated by HDD activity. There was (is?) a time when glowing boxes were all the rage and anything that could make parts glow, blink, color shift was what made the box rock.

For example - here is a pic of an old floppy cable wrapped in el wire:


If you look on the little black box there is probably a switch to shut the light off, pulse or some other option.

  • Apparently I missed that time ;) Do you think I can safely cut off the light controller? – lethal-guitar Feb 26 '14 at 14:24

I think there are LEDs or something else hidden within the cable. The box connects to the HDD LED socket so the cable lights up on harddisk activity. The molex connectors go between HDD and power supply. I don't think you'll damage anything if you cut it off.

  • That never occured to me, but it makes perfect sense! I'll try connecting it and see what happens on disk activity when I come home. – lethal-guitar Feb 26 '14 at 13:19

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