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Help with hard drive please

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August 23, 2009 4:46:08 AM

Hey yall, hoping you can help me with my delimma. my computer stopped working a couple months ago and i just left it. well now a couple months has gone by and i realize its stupid to let it sit, when what went wrong (ithink) is the HDD.

I bought a new harddrive (WD 320gb) and installed it. I can feel it power on/spin. (Yes, i did remember to ground myself before handling/installing/removing everything).

I go through the whole OS (xp) install and select my SATA raid driver and it gets to the part where it will start to install the OS but it says no hard drive found.

I have tried both SATA connections on the MB, i tried my old SATA wire and the new one that came with the HDD. IDK what else to do.


Could i have a bad motherboard? Would that cause it not to recognize the HDD?

(the computer itself is about 3 yrs old, Aopen MB (AK-86L), GeForce 6800, 2g RAM, WinXP)

More about : hard drive

a b G Storage
August 23, 2009 5:14:35 AM

If you are using a new HD, tried two different cables, in two different SATA slots (OK, maybe you should try a different power connector too) . . . the problem is most likely somewhere on the mobo.

Try resetting the CMOS (pull the plug on the psu, remove the battery on the mobo, press the tower's power on button a few times, then go grab a cup of coffee, er wait 10 minutes. Then put the battery back in.)

Boot up the PC and get into BIOS Setup. Normally this requires hitting a key (often DEL, maybe an Fn key) repeatedly almost immediately after powering up).

In BIOS, find the way to "Load Defaults". Then find the page that shows what devices are attached to the IDE channels (might be called Standard CMOS Features) and see if it found your disk drive.

If yes, edit other BIOS values as necessary, save, and exit.

If no, the mobo is at most likely at fault, though there may be a tiny chance its the psu not powering the HD correctly.
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August 23, 2009 5:26:33 AM

The old HDD was a legacy power plug and i used a legacy to sata connector that i had left over from when i bought everything a couple years ago i used to convert to a SATA plug... would this be anything to worry about?
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a b G Storage
August 23, 2009 6:15:14 AM

Maybe lol. Your PC is acting as if the disk drive isn't there, isn't powered up, or is broken.

A volt meter would allow you to at least check that the correct voltages are being passed thrugh to the SATA side. But if it once worked, and it doesn't appear damaged . . . those things can corrode, but don't often break.
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a b G Storage
August 23, 2009 6:28:51 AM

For XP you will (probably) need to use F6 to load the chip-set drivers (from a floppy), or change the BIOS to PATA emulation before it can see a SATA drive, .
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August 24, 2009 9:01:16 PM

Thanks for the advice guys. I figured it out. My MB only supported SATA1 speeds (150mb/s) and the new HDD was SATA2 (300mb/s). So I needed to install the jumper to limit it down to SATA1 speeds.

I did just that after I got home from classes today (boo!) and it works like a charm!
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a b G Storage
August 25, 2009 8:53:24 PM

Dam! "Legacy" should have been our clue. Sorry we missed that diagnosis, thanks for reporting the cure.
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