Nope - definitely IDE, had an IDE drive in it and someone just either didn't have the sled/tray anymore or just decided to do something on their own.  Either way, I have several of the lines from the cable that are off the through holes for the IDE interface. I've taken photo's, made a drawing of the pinouts on the motherboard and now I'm writing down what each of the through holes are going to on the IDE cable and then will work through the process of elimination and tracing (which is not easy as the motherboard has an RF grid pattern solder layer on the bottom of the motherboard (board is 4 layer) but some time and patience with a multimeter and I should be able to figure out where all of the detached lines need to go to, there are only 5 so hopefully it won't be too much work.   Still trying to figure out which chip is managing the IDE, I found which manages the Floppy.

Yes, the 12v actually has a power connector line run to it for the HD power, along with the 5v and GND's...  I need to redo those as well, they way they were done is not very safe.

Once smart thing the person did was run the CMOS battery lines up through the media housing and used 2 AA battery holders to substitute for the CMOS battery and they tuck in very nicely nice to the storage shielding so you only have to undo the 2 back screws and life the back top section of cover off, versus complete taking the entire unit apart to get to the CMOS battery location on the motherboard.

Its a very modular design, everything detaches separately, just the massive amount of shielding around everything makes taking it all apart quite the task.   This'll probably be one of the only pieces of technology still working if an EMP bomb is ever detonated over the US ;-)

On 8/15/2019 2:51 AM, Ian Finder wrote:
I was under the impression that the internal hard drive on the 1537 is SCSI and not IDE.
Careful, some of those pins have +12 power for the drive on them as well.

On Wed, Aug 14, 2019 at 8:49 PM Curt Vendel via cctalk < <>> wrote:


      I’m doing some work for a friend who has one of these unicorns
    it’s apparently a super beefed up CIA use the laptop that wound up
    in Russia somehow and he got it shipped back here to the US

    The motherboard was modified it looks like the hard drive was on
    some kind of a tray going to a connector which is IDE compatible

    Someone had extremely poorly soldered on an IDE cable in place of
    the sled and over the years several of the pans of popped off and
    they’re not really making sense as to the solder points they’re
    supposed to go to.  Complicating the matter is the paint outs are
    not just a direct staggered 40 Pin to Pin connection several of
    the through holes are not in use so just soldering on I had her
    and plug in the cable into it is not possible also the pens are
    staggered so that wouldn’t make it possible either.

    So to cut to the chase does anyone have the schematics or the
    motherboard pinouts for this connector so that I can do a proper
    soldering job and put on a clean working cable so that this laptop
    can vote from the IDE hard drive?

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