I have just discovered that a PC card (of the PCMCIA variety) uses the same electrical interface as CompactFlash. CompactFlash uses the ATA interface, and you can get cheap adapters to plug a CF card into an IDE slot to use it as a storage device (where it appears like a normal hard disk to the PC.)

I am wondering whether this means you can connect a PCMCIA card via one of these adapters into an IDE slot as well?

Is this electrically compatible?

Would this actually work - as in, can the host PC (with suitable drivers, which may not exist) be able to communicate with the PC card?

Are there any drivers (for any OS) that actually allow this to be used as a workable solution? (e.g. can Linux be told to access an IDE port as if it is a PCMCIA slot, thus allowing normal PCMCIA drivers to be used?)

Just to be clear, I am asking this question out of curiosity - whether it would work - not because I have an actual need to do it.

  • There seems to be many PCMCIA to IDE adaptors available. Have you tried searching? – paradroid Mar 30 '15 at 23:48
  • @paradroid: Oh wow that's embarrassing. I was searching for "pc card" and getting nothing, but trying "pcmcia" instead shows a few results. Most seem to be about plugging IDE devices into a PCMCIA slot, but it looks like there are a few that allow you to plug a PCMCIA device into an IDE port. I wonder what driver support is like? – Malvineous Mar 30 '15 at 23:58

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