How Many Devices Can Be Linked to a Single IDE Channel?

Two devices can be linked to a single IDE channel, although most computer motherboards have two separate IDE channels and are therefore capable of supporting a maximum of four devices total.

The IDE (Integrated Drive Electronics) interface was created in 1985 as part of a collaboration between Compaq, Western Digital and Control Data, and it was intended as a direct competitor to the SCSI (Small Computer System Interface) hard drive interface. Unlike SCSI hard drives, an IDE hard drive contains both the hard drive and the controller required to connect it to a computer motherboard. In any pair of IDE channels, one channel acts as a "primary" channel, while the other becomes the "secondary" channel.