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External eSATA disk not recognized

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September 4, 2008 2:16:37 AM

I tried to solve this situation and had no success. Tech Sup at LaCie nada, zero.

Can anybody help?

MB Asus A8N-e
Windows XP Pro SP3

I have

1- WD 250 Gb with my Windows
2- WD 320 Gb

I recently acquired an external disk: LaCie Big Disk Extreme 1 TB.
I invested a few extra bucks in order to have a USB2 connection and a eSATA connection, for speed.

The disk performs OK connected via USB.

But I cannot make it work connected to a SATA Port.
I'm using a shielded cable with eSATA and SATA connectors.

The BIOS recognizes the drive, Windows shows it in System/Hardware/Device Manager/Disk Drives,
but NOT in Computer Management/Disk Management. And it does not appear in 'My Computer'.

If the same connections are used with a bootable program such as Acronis Disk Director no problem,
the disk is recognized and partitions can be created/deleted/formatted.

Some other info that might be relevant:
Asus MB has 4 SATA ports.
If you want to add another disk, you have to do it in a certain way ie. OS must be in certain
slot depending on how many others are populated.
After adding this third external disk, Windows takes an inordinate amount of time to system boot.
Also the function of Disk Management takes a lot of time, as if deciding what to do.

Thanks a lot.
a c 327 G Storage
September 4, 2008 1:40:02 PM

I note in your mobo's manual that SATA Ports 3 & 4 are enabled or disabled together, separate from Ports 1 & 2. Then after they are enabled, you have separate entries in the BIOS on whether or not to use that port as part of a RAID array. So, did you Enable SATA Ports 3 & 4? And did you make sure they are NOT set to be part of a RAID system?

After that, does your mobo require that SATA drivers be installed in the OS to use them? The manual, Section 3.2.2, covers running the Driver Install software from the mobo CD, but does not mention specifically drivers for SATA. I'm wondering if you had a driver installed for the first SATA Port pair (1 & 2), but another driver might need to be installed for the second pair (3 & 4) now that it is enabled for use. Maybe that's why Windows can't deal with the new drive.
September 4, 2008 1:56:47 PM

Another (had to do this with my Gigabyte) plug it in, power it on, then power on the PC (or reboot) as the POST needs to see it first. (not hot swappable for some reason)
Related resources
September 5, 2008 6:01:02 PM

Thank you guys for your comments.
This drive is definitely hot swappable, yet I tried to power on before boot but no luck.
Yes, Sata 3-4 is enabled and not part of a Raid array.
May I insist that the drive works with the sata connection as long as Windows does not interfere. Acronis Disk Director let me create and format partitions, then with Acronis True Image I created backups of other drives, all of which are then usable when I go back to my USB connection.
I also run SpinRite with the eSATA connection with no problems.
The driver question is interesting.
The drivers listed for my other SATA drives are exactly the same as the ones listed for this drive. All Microsoft.
Tried to install the corresponding NVIDIA ones but was not succesful.
Tried to uninstall the drive and then select driver, cannot do that either.
a b G Storage
September 5, 2008 6:44:19 PM

On my MSI 780i, I had to make sure I installed the drivers for that specific chip on the board. After that, it worked great.

a b G Storage
September 5, 2008 6:51:55 PM

Several motherboards needed a bios update for 1TB hard disks.
You might want to update the bios.
September 8, 2008 10:16:24 PM

guys, the thing works fine with a bootable program. so, bios it ain't. besides, I have 1013, the last one published by Asus.
Drivers: 6.86 is the last issue for that nvidia xforce 4 ultra amd.
Thanks a lot anyway.
September 27, 2008 6:17:42 PM

did you manage to fix it?
I have the same problem..
Thanks in advance
September 28, 2008 1:45:05 AM

No, not yet. If I do, I'll post.
Did you try any other things?
September 28, 2008 6:09:13 AM

No.
My MB is the ASUS P5E3 and reading the manual, under the external SATA port says : "When using hot-plug and NCQ, set the Marvell eSATA/PATA Controller Mode in the BIOS to [AHCI]..."
Thwn refers to a chapter in the manual for details but there you do not see any of the AHCI thing. Anyway, I tried to set the SATA configuration to AHCI but the system cannot boot, I do not know why.
When I connect the disk with the eSATA cable, I sense that something is happenning because the system(mouse) freezes for few seconds but then I do not see any disk not even in the device manager. I never managed to see the disk in the device manager.
September 28, 2008 10:07:18 PM

Even though it works under whatever operating system is used by your boot utility, it still could be the enclosure that is to blame.

Do you have access to another computer with an eSATA port or another eSATA drive?

I'd also consider the purchase of a cheap controller with an eSATA port.




December 15, 2008 11:23:34 PM

Well, I finally gave up and purchased a cheap (U$ 24) PCI-Express/eSata card.
It came with its driver (very important) and that was it.
Problem finally closed!
December 22, 2008 8:44:25 AM

This actually might just have been a cable issue.
I had similar problem with a MYBOOK running on esata. Firewire was fine, but esata wouldnt work.
I ended up looking on the internet and reading comments about cable issues..
so i check it out...

I hacked some of the cable surround away (rubber) and not works fine as the cable pushes into the hardware correctly now! simple mod...

December 22, 2008 1:20:50 PM

Not in this case. DOS based stand alone applications worked perfectly, ie with Acronis Disk Director I could define and copy partitions, in an esata-sata connection with the suspect cable. But in windows, disk was only visible when connected via usb.
January 23, 2009 5:29:24 AM

It was the opposite problem for me. Acronis will not recognize the drive when connected via esata but fine when USB2. Windows vista and xp no problem either way. Acronis had weird problems not matter how it was run, either from cd or windows. My guess is that acronis does not like saving data via different connections (usb, esata) on the same archive. I even get a "failure to connect to esata 5" error when connecting via esata and running via acronis disk image cd. Acronis support has been useless and there software is generally terrible. I ran the restore option in their software and if I enabled "verify" it said it would take 1day and 12 hours but when I ran it without verify it ran in 30 minutes though not without failure.
May 22, 2009 9:31:22 PM

Has there been a solution to this? I have a 500MB LaCie Big Disk Extreme and I cannot get this damn thing to be recognized by Vista. When I plug it into a Mac it works perfectly fine (surprise, surprise).

Anyway, this thing shows up in my Device Manager but not in My Computer. Exact same issue as the OP. I have a Dell XPS 1300 Core 2 Duo with Vista home completely updated.
May 23, 2009 12:32:49 AM

Found a post somewhere that described a paticular sentence in the wording of the way acronis does the steps. Just had to answer one of the questions differently. Can't remember exactly what the wording was but there was a 2 or three options and I was choosing the wrong one. Something like its it an old archive?
May 23, 2011 4:48:43 PM

I have an A8N SLI Deluxe and was having problems getting a Fantom 1TB Green to work using Esata. I am connecting it to the external Esata port on the back of the MB. I was getting an Invalid Device message in the POST messages and Win 2003 server was not recognizing it.

I have SATA 1 & 2 enables and SATA 3 & 4. They are not part of a RAID. I am not using a RAID on this server and the NVIDIA RAID is disabled.

The key for me was under the Advanced / On Board Device Configuration .. SIL Image Mode was set to RAID and I changed it to SATA2. The BIOS then recognized the Fantom and upon Win Server 2003 R2 Boot it detected a new device and downloaded and installed a Mass External Storage Driver.

All is well now and the Fantom is functioning as an external storage device using ESATA.
October 29, 2011 10:26:03 PM

This is like two years later that I run into this problem. I have two raidsonic external docking stations, usb and eSATA, never had a problem with them. Now I bought a HITACHI 2TB drive and one Seagate 1 TB Constellation ES drive. Both drives do not work over eSATA in my PC. USB I haven't tried, but they work with the internal jacks.
Any other SATA drive I have or have ever used here works with this setup in eSATA mode. Not these two.
Now here's the strange thing: They work in those same docking stations when they're connected to my notebook via eSATA!
Get the picture? Only these two new drives don't work with eSATA with this particular PC, while others do, and they do with another computer.
I just don't know what to make of it.
I also tried partitioning them from the notebook. That wasn't a problem, but it made no difference.
November 18, 2011 12:49:15 AM

initials said:
This is like two years later that I run into this problem. I have two raidsonic external docking stations, usb and eSATA, never had a problem with them. Now I bought a HITACHI 2TB drive and one Seagate 1 TB Constellation ES drive. Both drives do not work over eSATA in my PC. USB I haven't tried, but they work with the internal jacks.
Any other SATA drive I have or have ever used here works with this setup in eSATA mode. Not these two.
Now here's the strange thing: They work in those same docking stations when they're connected to my notebook via eSATA!
Get the picture? Only these two new drives don't work with eSATA with this particular PC, while others do, and they do with another computer.
I just don't know what to make of it.
I also tried partitioning them from the notebook. That wasn't a problem, but it made no difference.


I have the same issue. I have three identical external cases with two different drives. The two that are the same work fine but my Western Digital WK5000AAKS 500 GB will only connect via USB but not eSATA. Luckily it's only backup for my music and not often used but I would still like to solve the problem as I may move it to my primary data backup and thus us it more often.
November 18, 2011 1:50:39 AM


Well, I found out for me what the problem is:
These new drives are SATA 3.0 6Gb/s drives. The docking stations are SATA 2. The PC has for eSATA solely SATA 3.0 connectors. This setup doesn't work.
My notion is, the drive and the PC are seeing each other as SATA 3.0 devices and start talking to each other as such, but their talk gets garbled up on its way thru the SATA 2 interface which doesn't fully understand the new kinda jazz and also can't keep up with the transfer speed requested.
The same drives in the same docking stations work when connected to a SATA 2 connector.
!