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HD disappears, CD disappears.

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November 2, 2009 4:55:14 PM

My motherboard (asus m3a78-cm) has started to arbitrarily drop or not recognize my CD drive and slave drives. (Two SATA HDs). On rare occasion it does recognize them in the BIOS as soon as they are clicked on they disappear.
Hmmmmm!!!!!!! I'm using Win 7.

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a b V Motherboard
November 3, 2009 11:14:39 PM

Sounds like they are seen as ? (virtual drives) have you enabled the controller to the slaves and cd correctly. This assumption is based on boot drive is configured correctly, are these internal, external, ide, scsi, usb....
November 4, 2009 1:17:19 AM

roonj said:
Sounds like they are seen as ? (virtual drives) have you enabled the controller to the slaves and cd correctly. This assumption is based on boot drive is configured correctly, are these internal, external, ide, scsi, usb....

They are internal drives (SATA) and all of them work properly in another computer. And they appeart and disappear with total randomness in the "broken" computer. I have updated the BIOs and conformed all the settings. That is why I'm thinking it is the Plau and Play portion of the MB if there is such a thing. If so can it be fixed with software or must the MB go back???
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a b V Motherboard
November 4, 2009 2:30:49 AM

Are they set up as ACHI drives on either computer? Which computer were they formatted on?

Was this computer just upgraded to Win7 or did you run it with Beta? Did you upgrade w/o formatting or do a fresh install?

How long have you had the computer? Was this same configuration used exactly when it was working? What did you change between it working well and now?
November 4, 2009 4:42:26 AM

Not sure what ACHI means! The drives were formatted when the puter was running Beta Win 7 and the problem was happening then. Now with a freshly formatted and installed Win 7 the problem continues. Only config change on the puter was to upgrade the BIOS (hoping for a fix!!) but alas . . . it was not to be.
As for what was changed between it working well and it behaving badly . . . nuthin' . . . nada . . . zip . . .!!! Thus my confusion!
My Plug and Play theory doesn't really hold either because flash drives install and run fine. I have tried everything a rationally thinkin' man would try . . . and now I've tried a few things an irrational, frustrated, pissed-off guy would try. Alas . . . nuthin' . . . nada . . . zip!!!!
a b V Motherboard
November 4, 2009 4:57:27 AM

One thing to keep in mind is that MANY motherboards have HDD boot problems if you leave flash drives in when you POST/Boot. Rarely happens with USB ext HDSs but can also. Make sure none of these are in the USB ports when you turn on system, see if things work better.

There's a problem with some Seagate drives that can cause similar problems, got one? If so, list the exact model/series number and size.

ACHI is the 3rd way of using an SATA drive, the others are IDE mode and RAID. It's a setting in the BIOS if motherboard supports it and most under 2 yrs old do. It enables special SATA features, such as hot-plugging. If a drive is set up with Windows while ACHI mode is enabled, it won't work well later if it's not - and vice-versa. You have to install ACHI drivers, like SCSI drivers, during the Windows install.

Have you gone into Computer Management (or Win7 equivalent) - run as compmgmt.msc on XP, and looked at the drive configs? Storage then Disk Mgt. See if they show proper settings? All drives should say Healthy and either Active or System for primary partitions. Is all the space on the drives partitioned?

Just trying to throw out some things that might help...
November 5, 2009 5:00:09 AM

Thnaks for the info on the ACHI. I will file it away for future reference. I have tried all the other stuff listed and trust me everything, EVERYTHING, makes no sense. I don't know enough about MBs but I'm thinkin' it has to be a mechanical issue of some sort with the particular area of the board where the slave drives plug in.
I gave up by the way and have returned to place of purchase and made it their problem. Thank you for your help and I will post their diagnosis should they arrive at one. I'm hoping they do! If not maybe an ASUS tech would like to have a go at the board when it arrives in their shop and he (or she) could post what they find. I've attached a special request to the board so I'll let you know. I've been doing this for years and years and never run across a problem like this one and the techs I've spoken to haven't either.
Perplexed but back in business!
a b V Motherboard
November 5, 2009 12:51:25 PM

Sounds good - if you can return/swap it and it fixes the problem, that's the right solution for sure. I wouldn't hold my breath tho waiting to find out what the problem with board is!

Good luck!
!