XP reinstall does not recognize Sata Drive

Needed to replace a hard drive on my wifes computer. She transfered all her files to a functioning WD 500GB Sata drive (not the primary drive). I replaced the primary drive with an IDE 160GB I had available, reinstalled windows and even added a second IDE as a slave (80GB). Windows installed fine, the 160GB was recognized, but the other two were not by XP, they were shown in the setup window and in device manager. Went to Computer Management>Disk Managment and allocated the 80GB and reformated and it shows up fine. The SATA drive still does not register in Disk Management, so I may have made a mistake and allocated it, which made it appear in Disk Managment and My Computer, but I can't access it as it says it is not formated. All my data is on this drive so I don't want to do that. THis drive was functioning fine on the very same computer until the replacement of the IDE primary and slave drive and the reinstall of XP. Is there a way to save the data on the SATA or is it gone? I never did format it, but I hope I did not do something unrecoverable when I created the primary partition in Disk Management. ASUS A8N-E MoBo if that helps. Thanks for any help.
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More about reinstall recognize sata drive
  1. Could we see the partition table and boot sectors with Microsoft's Sector Inspector?

    Extract the above archive to the one folder and execute the SIrun.bat file. The procedure will generate a report file named SIout.txt.
  2. Hi there,

    setting up the new 160 GB system drive and installing a fresh copy of Win-XP makes sense. After done, then you connected an 80 GB IDE or SATA? HDD as a data drive and repartitioned the drive and reformatted the partition so it is recognized by the OS properly

    The SATA drive you then connected internally and it was seen in the BIOS but not by the Win-XP OS. Here I am not sure what you did, but it sounds like you set up a new partition with standard allocation unit size? Now the partition needs to be formatted?

    If you repartitioned the drive, it sets new boundaries for the disk, and you lose all the old data.

    Go the Disk Mgmt, and in the lower graphical section, list what is in the Disk Status box for this SATA drive. It should read something like Disk1, Basic, xxx GB, Online or not initialized, or Offline , and over to the right in the Volume Status section list that information. It should read VolumeName, DriveLetter, xxx GG size, and either Healthy (primary partition) or Healthy (unknown partition) , or something similar. That may help.

    To possibly reset the old partition, a very good free program is the Easeus Partition Recovery Wizard, which is part of the Easues Partition Master Home edition which you can download and use, if it were repartitioned by mistake.

    Worth a try.
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