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Hard drive requires explanation

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  • Western Digital
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Anonymous
a b α HP
November 3, 2004 5:17:43 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware,alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

Picked up a nice little 733MHz Compaq Deskpro small form factor box at a
corporate yardsale recently. Original specs of 128MB, 10GB, 48x CD, Win 2000
Pro. Upgraded to 256MB. Nice computer.

Opened up the chassis and saw a Western Digital WD400BB disk drive in it.
Looked up the specs at the WD web site. Yep. 40GB. Great! More than I'd
bargained for.

Went into the computer's BIOS setup pressing F10. The BIOS reported the drive
manufacturer and model correctly, but showed the capacity as 10GB. I downloaded
the last 3.13 BIOS for the beast, and flashed the BIOS. Still 10GB capacity.
Ran WD's DLGDIAG drive diagnostics which showed a capacity (hold your breath
now) of 10GB.

Next, I hooked up another 40GB drive and the BIOS reported it correctly as 40GB,
which ruled out some sort of BIOS limitation on hard drive capacity.

The WD400BB drive has a large drive sticker (typical WD) showing a Compaq part
number. It also has an HP sticker on it, and a Compaq spare part number
sticker. The drive was manufactured in July 2003 (just out of warranty), so I'm
speculating that it was a replacement drive for a system under extended
warranty, because the original was made in 2000.

So what happened here? One possible explanation:

By 2003, WD (and Maxtor and all the rest) had stopped producing 10GB drives, and
HPaq needed spares as replacements. So HPaq contracted with WD to cobble up
40GB drives with drive firmware allowing only 10GB to be used. Sheesh! The
least they could have done would have been to paste a 10GB sticker on the drive.

Any other explanation? HP has done similar things in the distant past, but I
would be digressing.

Any idea how to use the entire 40GB capacity? Anybody have a WD400BB which
suffered a head crash? Swapping circuit boards could do the trick. Anybody
know how to reprogram hard drive firmware? ... Ben Myers

More about : hard drive requires explanation

Anonymous
a b α HP
November 3, 2004 10:33:41 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware,alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

I doubt if Compaq/HP was that devious. I'd ignore the BIOS and try to
figure out the underlying problem.

For example, what does Partition Magic say about the drive?

And the obvious question. Are you sure there are not two partitions? Or one
10GB partition and 30GB unpartitioned?

Tom
<ben_myers_spam_me_not @ charter.net (Ben Myers)> wrote in message
news:41883c9c.50369448@news.charter.net...
> Picked up a nice little 733MHz Compaq Deskpro small form factor box at a
> corporate yardsale recently. Original specs of 128MB, 10GB, 48x CD, Win
> 2000
> Pro. Upgraded to 256MB. Nice computer.
>
> Opened up the chassis and saw a Western Digital WD400BB disk drive in it.
> Looked up the specs at the WD web site. Yep. 40GB. Great! More than
> I'd
> bargained for.
>
> Went into the computer's BIOS setup pressing F10. The BIOS reported the
> drive
> manufacturer and model correctly, but showed the capacity as 10GB. I
> downloaded
> the last 3.13 BIOS for the beast, and flashed the BIOS. Still 10GB
> capacity.
> Ran WD's DLGDIAG drive diagnostics which showed a capacity (hold your
> breath
> now) of 10GB.
>
> Next, I hooked up another 40GB drive and the BIOS reported it correctly as
> 40GB,
> which ruled out some sort of BIOS limitation on hard drive capacity.
>
> The WD400BB drive has a large drive sticker (typical WD) showing a Compaq
> part
> number. It also has an HP sticker on it, and a Compaq spare part number
> sticker. The drive was manufactured in July 2003 (just out of warranty),
> so I'm
> speculating that it was a replacement drive for a system under extended
> warranty, because the original was made in 2000.
>
> So what happened here? One possible explanation:
>
> By 2003, WD (and Maxtor and all the rest) had stopped producing 10GB
> drives, and
> HPaq needed spares as replacements. So HPaq contracted with WD to cobble
> up
> 40GB drives with drive firmware allowing only 10GB to be used. Sheesh!
> The
> least they could have done would have been to paste a 10GB sticker on the
> drive.
>
> Any other explanation? HP has done similar things in the distant past,
> but I
> would be digressing.
>
> Any idea how to use the entire 40GB capacity? Anybody have a WD400BB
> which
> suffered a head crash? Swapping circuit boards could do the trick.
> Anybody
> know how to reprogram hard drive firmware? ... Ben Myers
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 3, 2004 11:51:56 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware (More info?)

On the seventh day, ben_myers_spam_me_not wrote...

> Any idea how to use the entire 40GB capacity?

Download "Ultimate Boot CD" from www.ultimatebootcd.com. Run one of the
disk wipe utilities (wiping the Master Boot Record should be sufficient in
case you'll be asked).

There are some occurences of hard disk manufactorers limiting hard disk
drivess' capacities but I haven't heard of the 400BB so far. I think it's
just a misaligned MBR, perhaps from a disk imaging software that is often
used in corporate environments.

HTH

--
mit freundlichen Grüßen/with kind regards
Christian Dürrhauer, Institute of Geography, FU Berlin

If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop
diggin'.
Related resources
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 3, 2004 4:38:29 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware,alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

Tom,

There are NO partitions on the drive as reported by FDISK. Another step I could
take to unravel this mystery would be to zero out the drive using the WD DLGDIAG
utility. This would blow away the MBR, partition tables and any other fakery
written at the beginning of the drive by drive overlay software (e.g. WD's Data
Lifeguard Tools), had it been used to set up the drive. With native BIOS
support for a 40GB drive already in this system, it would have been unnecessary
to use WD's software to set up the drive with the drive overlay junk. If this
had been a retail drive, the drive would have had a WD diskette in the box, and
some unwitting person could have run it to set up the drive overlays. BUT (a
bit BUTT!), this is clearly a drive supplied by HPaq, not a retail drive, and
very likely a replacement under warranty.

DLGDIAG also reported 10GB, and DLGDIAG does its inquiry to the drive for drive
capacity directly thru hardware registers, not even using DOS calls, hardware
INT 13h.

One reason why HPaq may have been devious. Federal government and other
contracts are a two-way street. They committ the vendor to selling and
supporting certain models for a fixed number of years, albeit at ridiculously
high prices given the usual price erosion in this business. "Support" often
means providing EXACT spare part replacements over the life of the contract. I
have been there in the past with US Govt contracts. If the contract says you
will provide a 10GB spare drive, you better do so or find yourself in violation
of the contract, even if the "violation" ends up giving the govt agency more
than originally bargained for. (For years, I have gotten and still receive
emails and phone calls from spare parts clearing houses looking for EXACT part
numbers when I know darn well a generic commodity substitute will work just
fine.)

I'll run DLGDIAG again to see if zeroing the drive fixes the situation, but I am
dubious. I still think the drive firmware got cobbled up.

In the meantime, any other ideas about this drive would be much appreciated.

.... Ben Myers

On Wed, 3 Nov 2004 07:33:41 -0500, "Tom Scales" <tomtoo@softhome.net> wrote:

>I doubt if Compaq/HP was that devious. I'd ignore the BIOS and try to
>figure out the underlying problem.
>
>For example, what does Partition Magic say about the drive?
>
>And the obvious question. Are you sure there are not two partitions? Or one
>10GB partition and 30GB unpartitioned?
>
>Tom
><ben_myers_spam_me_not @ charter.net (Ben Myers)> wrote in message
>news:41883c9c.50369448@news.charter.net...
>> Picked up a nice little 733MHz Compaq Deskpro small form factor box at a
>> corporate yardsale recently. Original specs of 128MB, 10GB, 48x CD, Win
>> 2000
>> Pro. Upgraded to 256MB. Nice computer.
>>
>> Opened up the chassis and saw a Western Digital WD400BB disk drive in it.
>> Looked up the specs at the WD web site. Yep. 40GB. Great! More than
>> I'd
>> bargained for.
>>
>> Went into the computer's BIOS setup pressing F10. The BIOS reported the
>> drive
>> manufacturer and model correctly, but showed the capacity as 10GB. I
>> downloaded
>> the last 3.13 BIOS for the beast, and flashed the BIOS. Still 10GB
>> capacity.
>> Ran WD's DLGDIAG drive diagnostics which showed a capacity (hold your
>> breath
>> now) of 10GB.
>>
>> Next, I hooked up another 40GB drive and the BIOS reported it correctly as
>> 40GB,
>> which ruled out some sort of BIOS limitation on hard drive capacity.
>>
>> The WD400BB drive has a large drive sticker (typical WD) showing a Compaq
>> part
>> number. It also has an HP sticker on it, and a Compaq spare part number
>> sticker. The drive was manufactured in July 2003 (just out of warranty),
>> so I'm
>> speculating that it was a replacement drive for a system under extended
>> warranty, because the original was made in 2000.
>>
>> So what happened here? One possible explanation:
>>
>> By 2003, WD (and Maxtor and all the rest) had stopped producing 10GB
>> drives, and
>> HPaq needed spares as replacements. So HPaq contracted with WD to cobble
>> up
>> 40GB drives with drive firmware allowing only 10GB to be used. Sheesh!
>> The
>> least they could have done would have been to paste a 10GB sticker on the
>> drive.
>>
>> Any other explanation? HP has done similar things in the distant past,
>> but I
>> would be digressing.
>>
>> Any idea how to use the entire 40GB capacity? Anybody have a WD400BB
>> which
>> suffered a head crash? Swapping circuit boards could do the trick.
>> Anybody
>> know how to reprogram hard drive firmware? ... Ben Myers
>
>
November 3, 2004 4:38:30 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware,alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

Ben Myers wrote:
>>>Any idea how to use the entire 40GB capacity? Anybody have a WD400BB
>>>which
>>>suffered a head crash? Swapping circuit boards could do the trick.
>>>Anybody
>>>know how to reprogram hard drive firmware? ... Ben Myers

Ben, I don't have a lot to offer, but do you know of 'Spinrite',
http://www.grc.com ? It will offer you another option on working
on hard drives and does directly access the drive regardless of
OS. Its not too expensive and its really worth it!

--
Jim


----== Posted via Newsfeeds.Com - Unlimited-Uncensored-Secure Usenet News==----
http://www.newsfeeds.com The #1 Newsgroup Service in the World! >100,000 Newsgroups
---= East/West-Coast Server Farms - Total Privacy via Encryption =---
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 3, 2004 9:30:46 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware,alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

An update. Consider once again the possibility of HPaq deviousness.

First, FDISK shows no partitions at all. Partition Magic would show the same.
Second, WD's DLGDIAG identifies the total drive capacity as 10GB, even after it
zeroed out all the supposed drive sectors and I rebooted the system.
Third, the Hitachi/IBM Drive Fitness Test identified the drive capacity as 10GB.

Both these and other manufacturer disk diagnostics bypass the motherboard BIOS
completely and rely on low-level port in and out commands to read the block of
drive information present on all IDE/ATAPI disk drives (except maybe the first
ones ever). Likewise, the Compaq BIOS has to resort to low-level port commmands
to get the drive info. After all, that's what a motherboard BIOS is for. It
shields higher level software from having to know the details of exactly how to
access drive information and read/write data.

So far, the drive walks like a 10GB drive, it looks like a 10GB drive (except
for the misleading WD400BB sticker), and it quacks like a 10GB drive. Until I
can come up with some other things to try, I have to assume that a 40GB drive
has had its firmware crippled by HPaq (or at their request) so that it believes
it is a 10GB drive. Now if I only had another WD400BB with a known good circuit
board to swap... Ben Myers

On Wed, 3 Nov 2004 07:33:41 -0500, "Tom Scales" <tomtoo@softhome.net> wrote:

>I doubt if Compaq/HP was that devious. I'd ignore the BIOS and try to
>figure out the underlying problem.
>
>For example, what does Partition Magic say about the drive?
>
>And the obvious question. Are you sure there are not two partitions? Or one
>10GB partition and 30GB unpartitioned?
>
>Tom
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 3, 2004 11:13:23 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware,alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

På Wed, 03 Nov 2004 02:17:43 GMT, skrev ben_myers_spam_me_not <@
charter.net>:

> Opened up the chassis and saw a Western Digital WD400BB disk drive in it.
> Looked up the specs at the WD web site. Yep. 40GB. Great! More than
> I'd
> bargained for.
>
> Went into the computer's BIOS setup pressing F10. The BIOS reported the
> drive
> manufacturer and model correctly, but showed the capacity as 10GB. I
> downloaded
> the last 3.13 BIOS for the beast, and flashed the BIOS. Still 10GB
> capacity.
> Ran WD's DLGDIAG drive diagnostics which showed a capacity (hold your
> breath
> now) of 10GB.
<snip>
> Any idea how to use the entire 40GB capacity? Anybody have a WD400BB
> which
> suffered a head crash? Swapping circuit boards could do the trick.
> Anybody
> know how to reprogram hard drive firmware? ... Ben Myers

I've had a similar experience with a hdd. (I cannot remember, though, how
it showed up in the BIOS.)
The drive had been dual-booting Windows and Linux. Later Linux hadn't been
removed properly.
I didn't know the history of the drive then, and used all the tricks
you've been mentioning.

I finally succeded using a small program called "Slate". It removes
everything, and I mean *everything* on a hdd.
(Warning! Be sure which drive you choose to delete.)
Afterwards the drive showed up as it should.


--
JP Loken
Using M2 - Opera
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 3, 2004 11:14:55 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware,alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

On the seventh day, ben_myers_spam_me_not wrote...

> I'll run DLGDIAG again to see if zeroing the drive fixes the situation, but I am
> dubious. I still think the drive firmware got cobbled up.

I'd bet the mystery is going to solve itself when you zero out the MBR.
Look forward to hearing from you...

--
mit freundlichen Grüßen/with kind regards
Christian Dürrhauer, Institute of Geography, FU Berlin

If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop
diggin'.
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 4, 2004 7:02:21 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware,alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

I downloaded slate, copied it to a boiotable DOS floppy and ran it. Same
result. The WD400BB still shows up only 10GB in the system BIOS. This is what
I thought would happen, because the WD DLGDIAG diagnostic did the same thing by
writing zeroes to all sectors on the drive, including the MBR and partition
table.

I'm going to pull the drive anyway, and replace it with a 20GB Seagate to sell
to a client.

Thank you for the suggestion, even though to no avail... Ben Myers


On Wed, 03 Nov 2004 20:13:23 GMT, "JP Loken" <jp_lokennospam@hotmail.com> wrote:

>På Wed, 03 Nov 2004 02:17:43 GMT, skrev ben_myers_spam_me_not <@
>charter.net>:
>
>> Opened up the chassis and saw a Western Digital WD400BB disk drive in it.
>> Looked up the specs at the WD web site. Yep. 40GB. Great! More than
>> I'd
>> bargained for.
>>
>> Went into the computer's BIOS setup pressing F10. The BIOS reported the
>> drive
>> manufacturer and model correctly, but showed the capacity as 10GB. I
>> downloaded
>> the last 3.13 BIOS for the beast, and flashed the BIOS. Still 10GB
>> capacity.
>> Ran WD's DLGDIAG drive diagnostics which showed a capacity (hold your
>> breath
>> now) of 10GB.
><snip>
>> Any idea how to use the entire 40GB capacity? Anybody have a WD400BB
>> which
>> suffered a head crash? Swapping circuit boards could do the trick.
>> Anybody
>> know how to reprogram hard drive firmware? ... Ben Myers
>
>I've had a similar experience with a hdd. (I cannot remember, though, how
>it showed up in the BIOS.)
>The drive had been dual-booting Windows and Linux. Later Linux hadn't been
>removed properly.
>I didn't know the history of the drive then, and used all the tricks
>you've been mentioning.
>
>I finally succeded using a small program called "Slate". It removes
>everything, and I mean *everything* on a hdd.
>(Warning! Be sure which drive you choose to delete.)
>Afterwards the drive showed up as it should.
>
>
>--
>JP Loken
>Using M2 - Opera
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 5, 2004 4:51:10 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware,alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

Christian,

No luck. I've done that several times.

Again, the BIOS (that's BIOS) AND DLGDIAG report a 10GB capacity. The
motherboard BIOS setup does not read the MBR at all to determine drive capacity.
It uses register-level commands to access the hard-coded (flash or EEPROM) block
of data which describes the characteristics of the drive. At least, that's what
a normal BIOS does, as do low-level utilities like DLGDIAG.

For other reasons, I'm coming to the conclusion that the DeskPro EN BIOS is not
quite what it seems. A Pentium 3 BIOS should be capable of handling drives with
a fairly large capacity. Several things I've done since installing a 20GB
Seagate lead me to wonder about how the DeskPro EN BIOS interacts with it.
Possibly the problem is a BIOS one, but I still doubt it.

However, does anybody have any information based on specs or real world use
regarding the BIOS limits of Version 3.11 or 3.13 of the 686P3 BIOS in the
DeskPro EN small form-factor computer? Thanks much... Ben Myers

On Wed, 3 Nov 2004 20:14:55 +0100, Christian =?ISO-8859-1?Q?D=FCrrhauer?=
<cduerr@geog.fu-berlin.de> wrote:

>On the seventh day, ben_myers_spam_me_not wrote...
>
>> I'll run DLGDIAG again to see if zeroing the drive fixes the situation, but I am
>> dubious. I still think the drive firmware got cobbled up.
>
>I'd bet the mystery is going to solve itself when you zero out the MBR.
>Look forward to hearing from you...
>
>--
>mit freundlichen Grüßen/with kind regards
>Christian Dürrhauer, Institute of Geography, FU Berlin
>
>If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop
>diggin'.
November 5, 2004 8:12:30 AM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

So the 20GB worked correctly? I think that would rule out a prob with the
BIOS although some P3's will have a 32GB limit. I don't see anywhere if you
tried the drive in a different machine. Do you get the same result? I'm sure
you checked already, but be sure the capacity is not clipped by a jumper
setting. 10GB would bee an odd limit anyway..

You might try over in comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage

<ben_myers_spam_me_not @ charter.net (Ben Myers)> wrote in message
news:418adacc.21212443@news.charter.net...
> Christian,
>
> No luck. I've done that several times.
>
> Again, the BIOS (that's BIOS) AND DLGDIAG report a 10GB capacity. The
> motherboard BIOS setup does not read the MBR at all to determine drive
capacity.
> It uses register-level commands to access the hard-coded (flash or EEPROM)
block
> of data which describes the characteristics of the drive. At least,
that's what
> a normal BIOS does, as do low-level utilities like DLGDIAG.
>
> For other reasons, I'm coming to the conclusion that the DeskPro EN BIOS
is not
> quite what it seems. A Pentium 3 BIOS should be capable of handling
drives with
> a fairly large capacity. Several things I've done since installing a 20GB
> Seagate lead me to wonder about how the DeskPro EN BIOS interacts with it.
> Possibly the problem is a BIOS one, but I still doubt it.
>
> However, does anybody have any information based on specs or real world
use
> regarding the BIOS limits of Version 3.11 or 3.13 of the 686P3 BIOS in the
> DeskPro EN small form-factor computer? Thanks much... Ben Myers
>
> On Wed, 3 Nov 2004 20:14:55 +0100, Christian =?ISO-8859-1?Q?D=FCrrhauer?=
> <cduerr@geog.fu-berlin.de> wrote:
>
> >On the seventh day, ben_myers_spam_me_not wrote...
> >
> >> I'll run DLGDIAG again to see if zeroing the drive fixes the situation,
but I am
> >> dubious. I still think the drive firmware got cobbled up.
> >
> >I'd bet the mystery is going to solve itself when you zero out the MBR.
> >Look forward to hearing from you...
> >
> >--
> >mit freundlichen Grüßen/with kind regards
> >Christian Dürrhauer, Institute of Geography, FU Berlin
> >
> >If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop
> >diggin'.
>
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 5, 2004 8:21:55 AM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq,comp.sys.hp.hardware (More info?)

This is getting stranger and stranger. Now I'm beginning to suspect the damned
DeskPro EN SFF Version 3.13 BIOS.

First, I installed a 20GB Seagate in the system. Neither FDISK nor Windows 2000
install would recognize the drive as larger than 8GB (8064K), even tho the BIOS
acknowledged it as 20GB, and the Seagate diagnostics did, too.

Next, I installed a 15.3GB Maxtor in the system. Windows 2000 installed itself
on a 15.3GB partition.

I guess that my next step is to try the WD400BB drive in a system known to be
able to handle 40GB drives. If it shows up as 40GB there, I'll have to conclude
that Compaq crippled the hard drive capacity in the Version 3.13 BIOS. And if
that's the case, it would be stupid, indeed... Ben Myers
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 5, 2004 6:32:46 PM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

No, the 20GB Seagate did not work correctly. FDISK and Win 2000 install both
saw only 8064MB or so. I now think there is a bizarre BIOS limitation like I've
never seen before. The 32GB barrier would be unfortunate but understandable,
altho Intel and other more generic motherboards from the same era top out at the
newer 132GB. No jumper issues with the 20GB. Checked and double checked this
all too often.

But a 15.3GB Maxtor DOES work perfectly, which says that the BIOS hard disk
capacity limit is somewhere between 15.3 and 20, probably 16GB. But I'm only
speculating, because Compaq never provided any printed info on the inherent disk
BIOS limitations... Ben Myers

On Fri, 05 Nov 2004 05:12:30 GMT, "David" <tonka@flashmail.com> wrote:

>So the 20GB worked correctly? I think that would rule out a prob with the
>BIOS although some P3's will have a 32GB limit. I don't see anywhere if you
>tried the drive in a different machine. Do you get the same result? I'm sure
>you checked already, but be sure the capacity is not clipped by a jumper
>setting. 10GB would bee an odd limit anyway..
>
>You might try over in comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage
>
><ben_myers_spam_me_not @ charter.net (Ben Myers)> wrote in message
>news:418adacc.21212443@news.charter.net...
>> Christian,
>>
>> No luck. I've done that several times.
>>
>> Again, the BIOS (that's BIOS) AND DLGDIAG report a 10GB capacity. The
>> motherboard BIOS setup does not read the MBR at all to determine drive
>capacity.
>> It uses register-level commands to access the hard-coded (flash or EEPROM)
>block
>> of data which describes the characteristics of the drive. At least,
>that's what
>> a normal BIOS does, as do low-level utilities like DLGDIAG.
>>
>> For other reasons, I'm coming to the conclusion that the DeskPro EN BIOS
>is not
>> quite what it seems. A Pentium 3 BIOS should be capable of handling
>drives with
>> a fairly large capacity. Several things I've done since installing a 20GB
>> Seagate lead me to wonder about how the DeskPro EN BIOS interacts with it.
>> Possibly the problem is a BIOS one, but I still doubt it.
>>
>> However, does anybody have any information based on specs or real world
>use
>> regarding the BIOS limits of Version 3.11 or 3.13 of the 686P3 BIOS in the
>> DeskPro EN small form-factor computer? Thanks much... Ben Myers
>>
>> On Wed, 3 Nov 2004 20:14:55 +0100, Christian =?ISO-8859-1?Q?D=FCrrhauer?=
>> <cduerr@geog.fu-berlin.de> wrote:
>>
>> >On the seventh day, ben_myers_spam_me_not wrote...
>> >
>> >> I'll run DLGDIAG again to see if zeroing the drive fixes the situation,
>but I am
>> >> dubious. I still think the drive firmware got cobbled up.
>> >
>> >I'd bet the mystery is going to solve itself when you zero out the MBR.
>> >Look forward to hearing from you...
>> >
>> >--
>> >mit freundlichen Grüßen/with kind regards
>> >Christian Dürrhauer, Institute of Geography, FU Berlin
>> >
>> >If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop
>> >diggin'.
>>
>
>
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 5, 2004 6:32:47 PM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

That would be a first. I've heard of 32GB on rare occasions, 8gb and 137gb
frequently, but never 16gb
<ben_myers_spam_me_not @ charter.net (Ben Myers)> wrote in message
news:418b9c01.10619869@news.charter.net...
> No, the 20GB Seagate did not work correctly. FDISK and Win 2000 install
> both
> saw only 8064MB or so. I now think there is a bizarre BIOS limitation
> like I've
> never seen before. The 32GB barrier would be unfortunate but
> understandable,
> altho Intel and other more generic motherboards from the same era top out
> at the
> newer 132GB. No jumper issues with the 20GB. Checked and double checked
> this
> all too often.
>
> But a 15.3GB Maxtor DOES work perfectly, which says that the BIOS hard
> disk
> capacity limit is somewhere between 15.3 and 20, probably 16GB. But I'm
> only
> speculating, because Compaq never provided any printed info on the
> inherent disk
> BIOS limitations... Ben Myers
>
> On Fri, 05 Nov 2004 05:12:30 GMT, "David" <tonka@flashmail.com> wrote:
>
>>So the 20GB worked correctly? I think that would rule out a prob with the
>>BIOS although some P3's will have a 32GB limit. I don't see anywhere if
>>you
>>tried the drive in a different machine. Do you get the same result? I'm
>>sure
>>you checked already, but be sure the capacity is not clipped by a jumper
>>setting. 10GB would bee an odd limit anyway..
>>
>>You might try over in comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage
>>
>><ben_myers_spam_me_not @ charter.net (Ben Myers)> wrote in message
>>news:418adacc.21212443@news.charter.net...
>>> Christian,
>>>
>>> No luck. I've done that several times.
>>>
>>> Again, the BIOS (that's BIOS) AND DLGDIAG report a 10GB capacity. The
>>> motherboard BIOS setup does not read the MBR at all to determine drive
>>capacity.
>>> It uses register-level commands to access the hard-coded (flash or
>>> EEPROM)
>>block
>>> of data which describes the characteristics of the drive. At least,
>>that's what
>>> a normal BIOS does, as do low-level utilities like DLGDIAG.
>>>
>>> For other reasons, I'm coming to the conclusion that the DeskPro EN BIOS
>>is not
>>> quite what it seems. A Pentium 3 BIOS should be capable of handling
>>drives with
>>> a fairly large capacity. Several things I've done since installing a
>>> 20GB
>>> Seagate lead me to wonder about how the DeskPro EN BIOS interacts with
>>> it.
>>> Possibly the problem is a BIOS one, but I still doubt it.
>>>
>>> However, does anybody have any information based on specs or real world
>>use
>>> regarding the BIOS limits of Version 3.11 or 3.13 of the 686P3 BIOS in
>>> the
>>> DeskPro EN small form-factor computer? Thanks much... Ben Myers
>>>
>>> On Wed, 3 Nov 2004 20:14:55 +0100, Christian
>>> =?ISO-8859-1?Q?D=FCrrhauer?=
>>> <cduerr@geog.fu-berlin.de> wrote:
>>>
>>> >On the seventh day, ben_myers_spam_me_not wrote...
>>> >
>>> >> I'll run DLGDIAG again to see if zeroing the drive fixes the
>>> >> situation,
>>but I am
>>> >> dubious. I still think the drive firmware got cobbled up.
>>> >
>>> >I'd bet the mystery is going to solve itself when you zero out the MBR.
>>> >Look forward to hearing from you...
>>> >
>>> >--
>>> >mit freundlichen Grüßen/with kind regards
>>> >Christian Dürrhauer, Institute of Geography, FU Berlin
>>> >
>>> >If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop
>>> >diggin'.
>>>
>>
>>
>
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 6, 2004 4:59:03 AM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

Yes, me, too. DEC Pentium II & Pentium Pro computers with a Phoenix BIOS had a
bizarre limitation of 15 heads, which required manual setup with a max hard
drive capacity of 15/16 of 8.4GB, however much that is. And Micronics Pentium
motherboards with Phoenix (again) BIOS had a 4.2GB limit.

Otherwise, I'll be darned if I can explain why 15.3GB formats with full capacity
and 20GB does not. The DeskPro EN Version 3.13 BIOS has two different "BIOS
translation options": "extended LBA" and "bit shift". What in hell is
bit-shift? With this BIOS, I'm more inclined to think there is an extra f in
bit-shift. Either way, the Seagate 20GB drive does not format to its full 20GB
capacity, even when using Seagate's Seatools to set up the 20GB partition.

Oh. yeah. I blew away the MBR and partition table with every trial with the
20GB drive... Ben Myers

On Fri, 5 Nov 2004 13:33:14 -0500, "Tom Scales" <tomtoo@softhome.net> wrote:

>That would be a first. I've heard of 32GB on rare occasions, 8gb and 137gb
>frequently, but never 16gb
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 10, 2004 7:57:31 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware,alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

Well, I finally took the WD400BB drive and put it in a Micron system with an
Intel branded D815 chipset and a 45GB IBM drive originally. The WD400BB drive
showed up in the BIOS as having a 10GB capacity. So it's not the Compaq SFF
BIOS, altho it, too, seems a bit crippled compared to similar vintage systems.
It's the damned drive with firmware doctored up to make just 10GB usable. What
a waste... Ben Myers

On Wed, 03 Nov 2004 02:17:43 GMT, ben_myers_spam_me_not @ charter.net (Ben
Myers) wrote:

>Picked up a nice little 733MHz Compaq Deskpro small form factor box at a
>corporate yardsale recently. Original specs of 128MB, 10GB, 48x CD, Win 2000
>Pro. Upgraded to 256MB. Nice computer.
>
>Opened up the chassis and saw a Western Digital WD400BB disk drive in it.
>Looked up the specs at the WD web site. Yep. 40GB. Great! More than I'd
>bargained for.
>
>Went into the computer's BIOS setup pressing F10. The BIOS reported the drive
>manufacturer and model correctly, but showed the capacity as 10GB. I downloaded
>the last 3.13 BIOS for the beast, and flashed the BIOS. Still 10GB capacity.
>Ran WD's DLGDIAG drive diagnostics which showed a capacity (hold your breath
>now) of 10GB.
>
>Next, I hooked up another 40GB drive and the BIOS reported it correctly as 40GB,
>which ruled out some sort of BIOS limitation on hard drive capacity.
>
>The WD400BB drive has a large drive sticker (typical WD) showing a Compaq part
>number. It also has an HP sticker on it, and a Compaq spare part number
>sticker. The drive was manufactured in July 2003 (just out of warranty), so I'm
>speculating that it was a replacement drive for a system under extended
>warranty, because the original was made in 2000.
>
>So what happened here? One possible explanation:
>
>By 2003, WD (and Maxtor and all the rest) had stopped producing 10GB drives, and
>HPaq needed spares as replacements. So HPaq contracted with WD to cobble up
>40GB drives with drive firmware allowing only 10GB to be used. Sheesh! The
>least they could have done would have been to paste a 10GB sticker on the drive.
>
>Any other explanation? HP has done similar things in the distant past, but I
>would be digressing.
>
>Any idea how to use the entire 40GB capacity? Anybody have a WD400BB which
>suffered a head crash? Swapping circuit boards could do the trick. Anybody
>know how to reprogram hard drive firmware? ... Ben Myers
November 10, 2004 10:42:43 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware,alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

Ben,
Sounds like manufacturing at Compaq ran out of 10GB drives and had some
extra 40GB ones laying around. Also sounds typical of Compaq, unfortunately,
to cripple the drive firmware to make only 10GB usable.
HH


<ben_myers_spam_me_not @ charter.net (Ben Myers)> wrote in message
news:41919eea.58960884@news.charter.net...
> Well, I finally took the WD400BB drive and put it in a Micron system with
> an
> Intel branded D815 chipset and a 45GB IBM drive originally. The WD400BB
> drive
> showed up in the BIOS as having a 10GB capacity. So it's not the Compaq
> SFF
> BIOS, altho it, too, seems a bit crippled compared to similar vintage
> systems.
> It's the damned drive with firmware doctored up to make just 10GB usable.
> What
> a waste... Ben Myers
>
> On Wed, 03 Nov 2004 02:17:43 GMT, ben_myers_spam_me_not @ charter.net (Ben
> Myers) wrote:
>
>>Picked up a nice little 733MHz Compaq Deskpro small form factor box at a
>>corporate yardsale recently. Original specs of 128MB, 10GB, 48x CD, Win
>>2000
>>Pro. Upgraded to 256MB. Nice computer.
>>
>>Opened up the chassis and saw a Western Digital WD400BB disk drive in it.
>>Looked up the specs at the WD web site. Yep. 40GB. Great! More than
>>I'd
>>bargained for.
>>
>>Went into the computer's BIOS setup pressing F10. The BIOS reported the
>>drive
>>manufacturer and model correctly, but showed the capacity as 10GB. I
>>downloaded
>>the last 3.13 BIOS for the beast, and flashed the BIOS. Still 10GB
>>capacity.
>>Ran WD's DLGDIAG drive diagnostics which showed a capacity (hold your
>>breath
>>now) of 10GB.
>>
>>Next, I hooked up another 40GB drive and the BIOS reported it correctly as
>>40GB,
>>which ruled out some sort of BIOS limitation on hard drive capacity.
>>
>>The WD400BB drive has a large drive sticker (typical WD) showing a Compaq
>>part
>>number. It also has an HP sticker on it, and a Compaq spare part number
>>sticker. The drive was manufactured in July 2003 (just out of warranty),
>>so I'm
>>speculating that it was a replacement drive for a system under extended
>>warranty, because the original was made in 2000.
>>
>>So what happened here? One possible explanation:
>>
>>By 2003, WD (and Maxtor and all the rest) had stopped producing 10GB
>>drives, and
>>HPaq needed spares as replacements. So HPaq contracted with WD to cobble
>>up
>>40GB drives with drive firmware allowing only 10GB to be used. Sheesh!
>>The
>>least they could have done would have been to paste a 10GB sticker on the
>>drive.
>>
>>Any other explanation? HP has done similar things in the distant past,
>>but I
>>would be digressing.
>>
>>Any idea how to use the entire 40GB capacity? Anybody have a WD400BB
>>which
>>suffered a head crash? Swapping circuit boards could do the trick.
>>Anybody
>>know how to reprogram hard drive firmware? ... Ben Myers
>
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 10, 2004 4:42:44 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware,alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

On Wed, 10 Nov 2004 07:42:43 -0500, "HH" <hahunt42@hotmail.com> wrote:

>Ben,
>Sounds like manufacturing at Compaq ran out of 10GB drives and had some
>extra 40GB ones laying around. Also sounds typical of Compaq, unfortunately,
>to cripple the drive firmware to make only 10GB usable.
>HH
>
Pretty much what I've concluded, especially given that the DeskPro SFF BIOS also
seeems quite limited in its BIOS hard drive capacity... Ben Myers
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 10, 2004 10:11:38 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware (More info?)

>>Ben,
>>Sounds like manufacturing at Compaq ran out of 10GB drives and had some
>>extra 40GB ones laying around. Also sounds typical of Compaq, unfortunately,
>
>>to cripple the drive firmware to make only 10GB usable.
>>HH

Or maybe something as simple as manufacturing slapping a wrong label on
it??????
Anonymous
a b α HP
November 10, 2004 11:31:21 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.hp.hardware (More info?)

Nope. Not when the firmware in the drive identifies it as WD400BB, same as the
stickered label. Definitely a deliberate crippling of the drive firmware to
allow only 10GB to be used... Ben Myers

On 10 Nov 2004 19:11:38 GMT, chrisj9876@aol.comnospam (ChrisJ9876) wrote:

>>>Ben,
>>>Sounds like manufacturing at Compaq ran out of 10GB drives and had some
>>>extra 40GB ones laying around. Also sounds typical of Compaq, unfortunately,
>>
>>>to cripple the drive firmware to make only 10GB usable.
>>>HH
>
>Or maybe something as simple as manufacturing slapping a wrong label on
>it??????
Anonymous
a b α HP
December 2, 2004 9:26:15 PM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

I have the same problem with a WD307AA 30gb, a Maxtor Fireball 30, and a
Samsung 20gb. I tried to clean these drives with WD Data Lifeguard
Tools, and they died. They then reported a smaller size drive via
FDISK. I then tried the W982E Start UP Fdd, Format C: FDISK to
partition to100%, and reformat. No good! They still report smaller
drive sizes. The funny thing is, every time I tried to fix the HD’s,
they got smaller. I’m down to 16 MB’s, yes MB’s on the drives. I think
the WDDLGT’s may have been contaminated, or the Start Up FDD was. I
also used W2k’s 4 Start Up Fdds’, but no go either. I Zeroed out all,
did a Fdisk /MBR …noting changed. The drives are still small or have no
partitions at all, and will not take any FDISK or FORMAT. I think the
Firmware (?) may have been contaminated. I searched the web for
anything that will redo a HD to factory specs, but found nothing. I
called the MFG’s but got no where. I’m about ready to buy new HD’s Any
suggestions will be greatly appreciated!
BillBerit




Ben Myers Wrote:
> I downloaded slate, copied it to a boiotable DOS floppy and ran it.
> Same
> result. The WD400BB still shows up only 10GB in the system BIOS. This
> is what
> I thought would happen, because the WD DLGDIAG diagnostic did the same
> thing by
> writing zeroes to all sectors on the drive, including the MBR and
> partition
> table.
>
> I'm going to pull the drive anyway, and replace it with a 20GB Seagate
> to sell
> to a client.
>
> Thank you for the suggestion, even though to no avail... Ben Myers
>
>
> On Wed, 03 Nov 2004 20:13:23 GMT, "JP Loken" jp_lokennospam@hotmail.com
> wrote:
> -
> På Wed, 03 Nov 2004 02:17:43 GMT, skrev ben_myers_spam_me_not @
> charter.net:
> -
> Opened up the chassis and saw a Western Digital WD400BB disk drive in
> it.
> Looked up the specs at the WD web site. Yep. 40GB. Great! More
> than
> I'd
> bargained for.
>
> Went into the computer's BIOS setup pressing F10. The BIOS reported
> the
> drive
> manufacturer and model correctly, but showed the capacity as 10GB. I
> downloaded
> the last 3.13 BIOS for the beast, and flashed the BIOS. Still 10GB
> capacity.
> Ran WD's DLGDIAG drive diagnostics which showed a capacity (hold your
> breath
> now) of 10GB.-
> snip-
> Any idea how to use the entire 40GB capacity? Anybody have a WD400BB
> which
> suffered a head crash? Swapping circuit boards could do the trick.
> Anybody
> know how to reprogram hard drive firmware? ... Ben Myers-
>
> I've had a similar experience with a hdd. (I cannot remember, though,
> how
> it showed up in the BIOS.)
> The drive had been dual-booting Windows and Linux. Later Linux hadn't
> been
> removed properly.
> I didn't know the history of the drive then, and used all the tricks
> you've been mentioning.
>
> I finally succeded using a small program called "Slate". It removes
> everything, and I mean *everything* on a hdd.
> (Warning! Be sure which drive you choose to delete.)
> Afterwards the drive showed up as it should.
>
>
> --
> JP Loken
> Using M2 - Opera-


--
BillBerit
Anonymous
a b α HP
December 2, 2004 11:37:40 PM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.compaq (More info?)

Well, at least I don't feel like I'm alone, and I'm definitely not crazy. It's
very interesting that you had the same sort of experience with three different
makes of drives.

In my case, I am now convinced that either WD or Compaq deliberately cripped the
WD400BB drive firmware to have only 10GB of capacity, because that was the hard
drive capacity delivered with an original DeskPro EN SFF computer, which also
appears to suffer from a serious limitation in IDE hard drive capacity supported
by its BIOS. I'll also bet that the WD400BB was either a spare part replacement
or a factory installed disk manufactured after WD stopped making the 10GB
drives.

Your posting prompted me to google a bit. I found this URL on the HPaq web site
with downloadable firmware updates for Seagate, Maxtor, and WD drives:

http://h18000.www1.hp.com/support/files/desktops/us/loc...

I just downloaded the WD firmware file. Hey, it's worth a try... Ben Myers

On Thu, 2 Dec 2004 18:26:15 +0000, BillBerit
<BillBerit.1gnica@news.computerbanter.com> wrote:

>
>I have the same problem with a WD307AA 30gb, a Maxtor Fireball 30, and a
>Samsung 20gb. I tried to clean these drives with WD Data Lifeguard
>Tools, and they died. They then reported a smaller size drive via
>FDISK. I then tried the W982E Start UP Fdd, Format C: FDISK to
>partition to100%, and reformat. No good! They still report smaller
>drive sizes. The funny thing is, every time I tried to fix the HD’s,
>they got smaller. I’m down to 16 MB’s, yes MB’s on the drives. I think
>the WDDLGT’s may have been contaminated, or the Start Up FDD was. I
>also used W2k’s 4 Start Up Fdds’, but no go either. I Zeroed out all,
>did a Fdisk /MBR …noting changed. The drives are still small or have no
>partitions at all, and will not take any FDISK or FORMAT. I think the
>Firmware (?) may have been contaminated. I searched the web for
>anything that will redo a HD to factory specs, but found nothing. I
>called the MFG’s but got no where. I’m about ready to buy new HD’s Any
>suggestions will be greatly appreciated!
>BillBerit
>
>
>
>
!