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Windows XP does not see my SATA hard drive. Bios does

  • Motherboards
  • Western Digital
  • Hard Drives
  • SATA
Last response: in Motherboards
August 24, 2007 9:42:45 PM

I have an admitedly dated system. MSI K7 motherboard, Nvidia 6800 video card w/256 meg ram, 2 gigs of 400 mhz ram, a 4 gig eide WD hard drive and an 8 gig eide WD hard drive and an AMD 2.08 gig processor. I bought a WD 80 gig SATA hd to increase my storage capacity, since the MB supports SATA. But after physically installing it, only the bios recognizes it. It does not come up on My Computer and I have been unable to format and use the drive. This nepohyte needs the forum's assistance.

More about : windows sata hard drive bios

a c 436 V Motherboard
August 24, 2007 11:11:15 PM

You can install the sata driver with a floppy diskette after doing a format and fresh install of windows. Disconnect the other drives when loading windows xp. I use the f6 key when prompted by win 2k. If you don't have a floppy, try making an exact copy of one of your old drives using the western digital software, which comes with a retail boxed hardrive. If your drive was oem, you can download the software off western digital's website.
a c 78 V Motherboard
August 24, 2007 11:33:04 PM

A quick check will tell you if Windows see's your drive (but still won't be visible to My Computer). Right click My Computer, select properties. At this point you should have the System Properties window open. Select the Hardware tab and click the Device Manager button. Click on the plus sign next to Disk Drives to expand it. If both your HDD's show up here, then proceed to the next paragraph. If it doesn't, it means that your SATA driver isn't installed.

You need to partition that drive before it will show up in My Computer. To do this go into Control Panel and then Administrative Tools. Once in Administrative Tools launch Computer Management and you'll see under Storage, Disk Management, click it. At this point, you should see your second drive most likely labelled Disk 1 in the lower righthand pane. Right click it and choose Make Partition. I imagine that you'll want to use the entire space as one partition. Once the partition is made, you should be able to see it in My Computer. You can choose to format from within Disk Management by using the same procedure I described above for making the partition. Right click on your partition and select format, pick you format type (most likely NTFS) and let it rip. Hope that helps.

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June 28, 2009 7:13:12 PM


I know this post is a couple of years old but, your post helped me figure out a big problem with an add on drive.

July 19, 2009 12:13:39 AM

I AGREE!!!! Thanks for the easy to follow advice. Even though this thread is years old----it is still relevant to today. BRAVO and THANK YOU!! :D  :hello:  :D 
July 20, 2009 4:59:25 PM

i also agree. dell couldn't help me as good as this advice did. thanks much (hope you still check these)
September 28, 2009 6:01:35 AM

I have to add one more agreement :)  Your advice helped me much.But i have one tip,you don,t have to go to ctrl panel-then admin. tools ... you can just click right click on my compyter and then choose manage and you will go to computer management.
Best regards
November 15, 2009 12:07:17 AM

Thanks for help. Working exactly as described. Great explanation!
March 25, 2010 2:12:26 AM

have the same initial question, but I dont have the opportunity to get into a working operating system, as that is the problem. The bios sees the hard drive, but when you actually try to install the opsys, it gets thru everything until it comes to a screen saying that it doesnt see a hard drive installed....There is one!! Bios sees it! I then thought get a new drive....does the same thing to a brand new known good drive. They are sata drives and the initial drive actually did work for 2 years...had some probs and decided to wipe drive and a fresh install of windows media center....So does anyone know what this may be. Is it the controller on the motherboard in this gateway laptop? I am ready to toss it!!!

Thanks for any input :) 
a b V Motherboard
March 25, 2010 2:15:34 AM

I'd suggest starting a new thread. You will get better help that way.