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Disk management or device manager can see sata drive

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April 8, 2010 12:55:14 PM

Hello,
I only have one sata TB WD connected. Bios sees it and it works as drive C. But I windows doesn't recognise it at all. It is the primary w/dvd as secondary slave on ide. Disk management sees the dvd not the sata. Device manager doesn't even have a disk-drive icon and nothing for harddrives at all. Bios is limited its a dell dimension 4600 mother board. It is physically connected right. WD lifegaurd tools says no WD harddrives detected and this is the one that came with the sata drive. I want to upgrade to vista w/o wiping hd and it needs to see the drive to do it. Unless there is drivers for the sata drive that will make it visible. WD website has no drivers for this sata drive except lifetools. HELP ME PLEASE
a c 362 G Storage
April 8, 2010 2:25:37 PM

Lots of confusion here. A little terminology to start. The 1 TB WD unit, it appears, is the drive you boot and run from, so it is the boot drive. "Primary" and "Secondary" are terms usually used to designate the two possible IDE ports on motherboards. "Master and "Slave" also are terms for IDE ports, used to designate for EACH such port which of the two devices on that port and cable is which. Your machine as a whole does NOT have a Master drive or Slave drive. I would guess, since the optical (DVD) unit is on an IDE port and probably the only device on that port, it is the Master device on the Primary IDE port. Your hard drive is a SATA device on a port that has no Master or Slave differentiation - it can only handle ONE device per port. I would say you have one boot drive, and one (or more if you didn't tell us of them) additional data storage device(s).

So you have a fully-functional SATA drive on one SATA port that you use to boot and run from. And you also have a DVD drive that works just fine, connected to an IDE port. If that is all true, then your BIOS and Windows are "seeing" or recognizing them both with no problem. So the question becomes more, "Why do YOU not see them?"

1. WD LifeGard says no WD hard drive detected. Well, are you sure the HDD unit is a WD product? That utility will not try to work on other makers' HDD's.
2. You say Disk Management sees the DVD but not the SATA drive. Assuming you are really using Disk Management and not another tool with a similar name, look in the LOWER RIGHT pane of Disk Management. It SCROLLS so you can see all of its contents. You should see there one separate horizontal block for each connected storage hardware device - one for your HDD unit, and another for your optical drive. Each should have a smaller sub-block at its left end with a bit of label information. The HDD (but not the optical) should have to the right of that a block (or more than one) that represents a Partition established on the HDD unit and used as a logical "drive". It should have information like its name (C: for example), its size, its File System, and its status. What does this stuff look like on your system?
3. Also in Disk Management the UPPER RIGHT pane scrolls, too, so you can see all the "drives" that Windows is using. You should see there blocks for your C: drive and your optical unit. What does it show?
4. You say Windows does not recognize the C: drive at all. Where do you NOT see it?
5. An Operating System like Windows needs drivers to use physical devices like hard drives. BUT in the case of hard drives what it actually needs (and has) are drivers for the motherboard devices known as Drive Controllers. There are about four of these already built into Windows - floppy drive, ATAPI IDE drive, IDE hard drive, and SATA device. Beyond that at the level of the drive unit itself, it is standardized so that ANY SATA drive will connect to ANY SATA controller port (with a few minor details, and there is NO special driver for a particular model of SATA drive. Even if you choose to use AHCI control of a SATA port and drive which DOES need a driver installed into some versions of Windows, this is done at the controller level, not the drive level.
6. Any possibility you are running as a user with limited access rights so that you cannot "see" certain parts of your drives because you don't have access rights to them? Still, I would expect that My Computer will show you a C: drive with folders in which to find and store things. How else could you create documents and recall them for use?
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April 30, 2010 10:06:39 PM

What happened is that windows xp pro did not see the TB SATA WD (yes it is a WD). When in explorer you see C drive. But in administrative tools under disk management windows only recognized the dvd drive which was on the secondary ide slot on the MB. There was nothing hooked up to the primary IDE as my SATA was hooked up on SATA cables.
I came to the conclusion that XP PRO didn't know about TB harddrives when it was released not with SP1 or SP2. Don't know about SP3 because I couldn't get it to download as that part of the system was messed up.
I ended up installing Windows 7 ultima edition and it sees the SATA WD TB. Also when this was happening in xp pro when in device manager there was no disk drives listed. Pretty sure what I said above was the problem. Fixed it another way.
THanks for reading.
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