Here's the deal: I've got a new computer running XP with SP1. I'm interested in using programs like DVD2SVCD and VCDEasy, but before I do that, I first need to install an aspi layer since I've read XP doesn't come with one. So which one of the various versions of ASPI should a safety-conscious newbie who wants to use these programs install on their system? I really don't want to screw up my computer in any way, but I also don't want to be waiting forever for some new "holy grail" of ASPI for XP to be released that finally seems to work properly for everybody using various programs like those I mentioned.
I've searched all kinds of threads on different websites and forums dealing with XP and which versions of ASPI people have been using with it. There really seems to be no definitive right or wrong answers anywhere. Some people say forceaspi(4.60) is the way to go, whereas some say installing it screwed up their computers somehow or that only "official" versions should be used. I've read that aspi 4.60 wasn't really designed to work with XP, and actually shouldn't be used with XP (according to Adaptec), but it seems many people use it on their XP systems anyways with no problems. I've read that many people had problems with aspi 4.70. I've read that some people had problems with aspi 4.71 too, but others have used that one without any troubles. Now there's a 4.72 aspi layer out (actually recognized as 22.214.171.124 though in aspichk according to some posts I've read, hence adding even more potential confusion...thanks adaptec ), but there's not much feedback on the forums yet regarding peoples' experiences with it. What little feedback is available seems to leave me with the same old "which one should I use" question.
It seems to me like "the best thing" might be to install the newest aspi 4.72 for XP from adaptec's site using the "virtual" adaptec-hardware method as described on the forceaspi site here: http://aspi.radified.com/? Or is this trick even necessary anymore to install adaptec's newest aspi without actually owning adaptec products?(anyone tried this yet?). Should I try this newest "official" 4.72 aspi first and then if DVD2SVCD and VCDEasy don't work properly, try using forceaspi instead? Or should I just use forceaspi from the get-go even though I'm running XP, as is recommended by many people? I normally read about things thoroughly beforehand to help avoid confusion, but in this case, reading so many conflicting reports and words of advice has left me scratching my head. It's all just rather confusing.
And why is it that some people are having problems running programs with the newer ASPI layers installed that are specifically designed by Adaptec for use with windows XP? Is it adaptec's fault, or is it a flaw of some kind built into some of these other programs with how they use aspi? If someone could give me some solid answers once and for all on this whole XP ASPI issue, I'd be most appreciative. Thanks.
P.S. I didn't notice a sticky-post anywhere dedicated to any aspi issues such as this, but maybe there should be one since aspi-related threads seem to come up rather often here? Even if the sticky didn't give a precise "it's best to do this..." type of answer (since one answer doesn't seem to currently exist--please correct me if I'm wrong), it'd still be a lot easier reading this in one sticky titled "aspi problems" or something rather than having to hunt down and read numerous posts across various forums/websites just to come to the conclusion that compatibility problems between certain XP+aspi+software combinations seems to be rather mysterious for the moment.
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The only solid answer that I can give you is that 4.72 is completely free and there are not prerequisites to install it. Other versions may be free as well, but I havn't really followed their driver releases at all.
The only suggestion that I feel I can give about all of this is to just install different versions and see what works best for you. I'm personally using the Adaptec 4.60(1021) (not forced) and have never had any problems for more than two years now (on win98/win2k/winxp).. and when I finally decided to install 4.72 when it first came out a few weeks ago, my computer went completely FUBAR. My drive dissapeared and no matter what I tried I couldn't make it reappear until I decided to format and reinstall everything all over again... my own fault for disabling system restore immediately following all fresh OS installs hehe =) But system restore is very nice for experimenting with weird things, provided you remember to use it.
I dunno what's up with this ASPI thing lately. I think it's just a new trend of "oh, i think that's my problem" computer thing. (Some people say you need a better power supply, others will tell you expensive "crucial" ram, and such...) I NEVER had a single problem with my ASPI layer, providing you make sure it's there, and working... People posted problems in threads too that were completely unrelated to the ASPI layer.
I used forceaspi with XP to burn with VCDEasy. I had no problems at all, only with Roxio EZ CD Creator....which will not load now. Its weird, but with old version of aspi, nothing else was impacted on my computer.
I'm using ASPI v4.72a2 here and haven't run into a problem yet to date.Warning! I'm baaaaaaaaack
This is the approach "I" think you should take:
(1) Don't touch your ASPI layer and see if everything works. If it does, don't go do something silly like "updating" it...
(2) If it doesn't work, download ForceASPI (i.e., v4.60 of the Adaptec drivers) and install it and then reboot. You need to reboot before it will work. I don't know what Adaptec recommends, but these drivers have worked flawlessly in Win98 and WinXP for me.
(3) I don't think that there should be a "3"... Easy CD Creator tends to screw things up so if possible, use Nero for general audio CD/data CD burning. Nero uses its own ASPI drivers. As CDRDAO / VCDEasy uses the Adaptec drivers, VCDEasy and Nero should co-exist quite happily and not know of each other's existence.
w: Morsels of Evidence
I know this is long-delayed, but I just wanted to say thanks to all those who replied! I guess the "try and see" approach wins. Cheers.