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Weird problem with harddrives

Last response: in Storage
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September 24, 2009 4:49:50 AM

Long version: i have a 300 gb ide with 2 partitions, xp and windows 7, i recently got a 650gb sata, it was working fine for about a week untill installed my tv tuner with mce remote. it installed ok and when i hit the sleep button on my mce remote something went wrong during shutdown. when i booted back up i got an error at bootup that said "insert bootable media" when i go into bios it doesnt even detect the ide drive anymore, so i unplug the sata drive and my pc boot ups fine.

short version: i have 2 drives, 300ide with OS and a new 650 sata for data, when i plug in my 650 i am no longer able to boot from ide. any ideas?
a b G Storage
September 24, 2009 12:36:57 PM

Welcome to the forums!

Change the boot order in the bios.
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a c 348 G Storage
September 24, 2009 1:26:36 PM

As evongugg says, Boot Order is involved, all right. However, I'm intrigued that you say the BIOS does not detect the IDE drive, yet it will boot from there IF you disconnect the SATA drive. Please confirm you cannot detect the IDE drive in BIOS.

How is the SATA drive being handled by the BIOS? Did you set the BIOS to treat the SATA drive as an IDE device? This IDE Emulation mode works well, especially for Win XP and earlier that needs drivers to use native SATA devices. But you may have it set to either native SATA or AHCI mode with appropriate OS settings. Even if it is doing IDE Emulation, the BIOS certainly should NOT be causing a clash between the SATA drive and the true IDE one. Check exactly which ports the BIOS claims the HDD's are on. For example, I'd expect to see things like the IDE drive on IDE Channel 0 Master, and the SATA unit on IDE Channel 2 Master.

I'm assuming you have the real IDE HDD jumpered to be the Master on that port; from your description it appears you don't have a second IDE device, but just maybe you do have an optical drive connected either as IDE Primary Channel Slave, or as Secondary channel Master.
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September 24, 2009 4:49:33 PM

yea i couldnt detect the ide drive in bios when the sata was plugged in. i did have another ide drive for data but it was unplugged, i plugged it back in and plugged the sata in and everything seems to be fine now, what would be the cause of this?
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a c 348 G Storage
September 25, 2009 2:13:31 PM

Check the way the jumpers on both your IDE drives are set. What you describe sounds like you had only one IDE drive plugged in with its jumpers set wrong and the system could not figure out what to do unless there were NO other drives connected.

Here's how IDE drives must be set up.

1. Each IDE port and cable can handle up to two drives sharing the port. The most common ribbon cables have three connectors on them - one on each end, and one in the middle. A few don't have the middle connector so you can't use that cable with two devices, but a 3-connector cable on the same port will give you the full capabilities.
2. Because two devices share one port there has to be a way to identify each uniquely. This is done with jumpers on pins on the back edge of the drive, usually located between the 4-pin Molex power input and the wide 40-pin data connector. The terminology is Master and Slave.
3. EVERY IDE port MUST have a Master if it is used at all. So the first device on the port must have its jumpers set to Master, according to diagrams on the drive. Then it should be plugged into the END connector of the cable.
4. IF a second device is added on this port, then it MUST have its jumpers set to Slave. It should be plugged into the middle connector.
5. Some drives make a slight refinement in jumper settings. Instead of plain "Master", you must choose between "Master with No Slave Present" or "Master with Slave Present", or something like that.
6. An alternative system - choose the system above or this, but not some combination) is called "Cable Select", or "CS" for short. You set BOTH drive's jumpers to "CS". Then the one on the END will be the Master - no choice - and the one in the middle will be the Slave.

All of this is only for purposes of keeping the two devices sharing one port clearly identified. It has NOTHING to do with which device you boot from, and there is no such thing as the "Master Disk" in a whole machine. The Boot Priority Sequence is something you set up in the BIOS screens, and you can use any of several devices in the system.

So, check carefully the jumpers on your two IDE devices. Make SURE each is jumpered properly so that the one you want to have as Master (if you care) is set that way, and the other is Slave. Ideally (although not essential), the Master should be on the end of the cable. Or, if you choose the Cable Select system, make SURE the Master device is on the END of the cable.
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September 25, 2009 3:40:35 PM

Yes, I agree with Paperdoc regarding the "jumper pin" in your Hard drive. Either SATA or IDE has a default master config in the jumper. You have to set one as a MASTER and one as a SLAVE.

If both are "physically" set as MASTER, there will have conflict in detection in your bios.
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a c 348 G Storage
September 25, 2009 6:31:18 PM

nashlofer said:
Yes, I agree with Paperdoc regarding the "jumper pin" in your Hard drive. Either SATA or IDE has a default master config in the jumper. You have to set one as a MASTER and one as a SLAVE.

If both are "physically" set as MASTER, there will have conflict in detection in your bios.


You're right, the two drives on an IDE port MUST be set differently. But only IDE (aka PATA) systems have Master and Slave settings, and they do use jumpers on pins for that. SATA does NOT ever have a Master or Slave, because all SATA ports support only one drive each. The confusion happens because some drive makers have included pins and jumpers on the back edges of their SATA drives for entirely different reasons, such as setting buffer management modes, or forcing a slower (original SATA) data transmission speed.
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September 26, 2009 6:43:31 PM

Paperdoc said:
.... SATA does NOT ever have a Master or Slave, because all SATA ports support only one drive each. The confusion happens because some drive makers have included pins and jumpers on the back edges of their SATA drives for entirely different reasons, such as setting buffer management modes, or forcing a slower (original SATA) data transmission speed.


Got it, yes I agree to that. Thanks for clarifying.
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October 3, 2009 2:50:42 AM

thanks for the help guys, im still not sure what happened, i didnt change any jumpers but everything works fine now : \
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a b G Storage
October 4, 2009 4:05:47 AM

What paperdoc described would only be required if your had two IDE drives on a one channel.

What motherboard is it? Sounds like the IDE ports are from an addon controller while the southbridge of the motherboard has SATA naively. A glitchy/outdated BIOS can do that sort of thing if put to sleep mode then trying to wake up on an addon controller.

Your best option is to ditch all IDE drives (except the optical drive) and switch all HDDs to SATA.
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October 5, 2009 4:11:12 PM

jak33 said:
thanks for the help guys, im still not sure what happened, i didnt change any jumpers but everything works fine now : \


As long as it is working, everyone is happy. Good for you man..
Miracles do happen everyday. =)
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