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BIOS not detecting SATA drives

Last response: in Storage
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March 16, 2012 12:34:29 AM

Specs:
Asus P5G41T-M LX Plus
Intel Q9300 @ stock
Nvidia GTS 250
Gskill DDR3 1066 8gig

The SATA drive i'm trying to detect is WD3200AAJS 320gb. Also i have two other sata drives (160 and 80) and they arent being detected either.


Problem:
I've tried everything that I know of to try to fix this and the drives still aren't appearing but my IDE cdrom is. This all started after I got a new motherboard. The old motherboard was a Asus P5G41T-M LX not the plus one though. It was working perfectly fine before the new motherboard. I can't even load up an os and the cd drive isn't doing anything.


Tried:
Switching ram, alternating ram around
resetting bios
replacing cmos battery
switching psu
switching hdds


not tried or don't know how to do:
updating bios without an os
something about a serial memory chip
haven't figured out how to flash bios
a c 1097 V Motherboard
a c 261 G Storage
March 16, 2012 12:38:35 AM

Check if your SATA controller is enabled in BIOS!
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March 16, 2012 12:41:01 AM

Never thought of that and how would you do that? Ive searched many forums about this issue and none of suggested that.

Edit:
you mean the compatible stuff or enhanced stuff? S-ATA or SATA only or P-ATA + S-ATA. ive messed with that but never got it to work!
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March 16, 2012 12:55:27 AM

Found something about IDE/ATA configuration. it's saying that if it's in enhanced - S-ATA mode it put the S-ATA and P-ATA in native mode. Should it be in native mode or is that the problem? Like i said ive messed with these options before and it didnt do much
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a c 1097 V Motherboard
a c 261 G Storage
March 16, 2012 1:27:13 AM

The drives properly connected data and power cables?
Storage configuration set to enhanced?
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March 16, 2012 1:43:43 AM

Yes the cables are fine. In enhanced which one should i pick? S-ATA? S-ATA + P-ATA? P-ATA? many thanks once again for helping
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a c 1097 V Motherboard
a c 261 G Storage
March 16, 2012 1:57:53 AM

I believe sata + pata
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March 16, 2012 2:01:05 AM

still not detecting the sata drive. but it is detecting my ide cd drive
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a c 1097 V Motherboard
a c 261 G Storage
March 16, 2012 2:12:11 AM

I am starting to think you have a bad board!
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March 16, 2012 2:16:59 AM

hm why is that?
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a c 1097 V Motherboard
a c 261 G Storage
March 16, 2012 2:21:29 AM

Because it should be as simple as your old board, your SATA controller is not working!
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March 16, 2012 2:28:01 AM

OMG. i cant believe i didnt remember this... when i first got the motherboard and i plugged it in for the first time smoking starting coming out of the motherboard. im certain it was near the clearcmos pins and the sata data plugs
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March 16, 2012 2:36:56 AM

i feel like an idiot for wasting your time. i just remembered sorry!
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a b V Motherboard
a c 342 G Storage
March 16, 2012 2:37:24 AM

First, I don't expect you need to update your BIOS. A lot of people recommend "update your BIOS" whenever the mobo has trouble working with a "large" HDD because that WAS an issue for drives over 128 GB on IDE ports a while back. It has NEVER been an issue for SATA drives.

However, I do recognize that there sometimes are odd problems that can be fixed by BIOS update. If you need or want to do that without an OS installed, your manual (per the reference above from rolli59) shows you how under Section 2.1.2 on p. 2-2. It assumes you will download the latest BIOS file and place it on a USB thumb drive. Then you use a BIOS updating utility already built into your existing BIOS, following the manual's instructions.

Your manual deals with drive configuration in Sections 2.3.3 and 2.3.4 on pp 2-7 and 2-8. It does not indicate that there is any option to Enable or Disable drives, so we'll assume they are all Enabled. The Main screen of BIOS Setup shows the drives: if your drives are not detected and shown on this screen, you do have a problem. If you know your drives are good but all your SATA devices are Not Detected on this screen, then I'd suggest you have a bad mobo.

On the other hand, I'm not clear from your post that you are looking at this screen when you say, "BIOS not detecting SATA drives". If this screen does show your SATA units properly, then the BIOS HAS detected them, and you have a different problem, probably in configuration. In Section 2.3.4 you set the SATA Enhanced Mode. IF you are using Win XP in any version, you should set this to P-ATA. But assuming you're using Win7 or Vista, set this to S-ATA to get best use of your drives.

If your CD is the ONLY device on the IDE port, its jumper MUST be set to Master, and it should be plugged into the END connector on the ribbon cable. I would assume that is how it was on the old mobo, but check it.

Are you re-using your drives from before the mobo change? I would assume you are. It sounds like you are trying to Install your OS on one of them, which is a good idea. You probably cannot simply hook up your drives and expect the new mobo to boot from that - at least, not without some work to fix driver problems.

Assuming you are trying to Install to a previously-used HDD, the Install Process may tell you it cannot find any empty drive to Install to. That is NOT because the BIOS is failing to detect. It is because the drives are all "full" - that is, their entire space is assigned to existing Partitions. To do the Install of the OS, you need either to use its tools to Delete all existing Partitions on the ONE HDD you're installing to, or at least to tell it to use one specific Partition (large enough for the job) to Install to. IF you Install to any existing Partition, be aware it will wipe that entire Partition clean and you will lose all its old data.
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Best solution

a c 1097 V Motherboard
a c 261 G Storage
March 16, 2012 2:43:00 AM

enzoja said:
OMG. i cant believe i didnt remember this... when i first got the motherboard and i plugged it in for the first time smoking starting coming out of the motherboard. im certain it was near the clearcmos pins and the sata data plugs

That is an indication it is bad!!!!!!
They are not supposed to smoke!
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March 16, 2012 2:49:03 AM

Paperdoc said:
First, I don't expect you need to update your BIOS. A lot of people recommend "update your BIOS" whenever the mobo has trouble working with a "large" HDD because that WAS an issue for drives over 128 GB on IDE ports a while back. It has NEVER been an issue for SATA drives.

However, I do recognize that there sometimes are odd problems that can be fixed by BIOS update. If you need or want to do that without an OS installed, your manual (per the reference above from rolli59) shows you how under Section 2.1.2 on p. 2-2. It assumes you will download the latest BIOS file and place it on a USB thumb drive. Then you use a BIOS updating utility already built into your existing BIOS, following the manual's instructions.

Your manual deals with drive configuration in Sections 2.3.3 and 2.3.4 on pp 2-7 and 2-8. It does not indicate that there is any option to Enable or Disable drives, so we'll assume they are all Enabled. The Main screen of BIOS Setup shows the drives: if your drives are not detected and shown on this screen, you do have a problem. If you know your drives are good but all your SATA devices are Not Detected on this screen, then I'd suggest you have a bad mobo.

On the other hand, I'm not clear from your post that you are looking at this screen when you say, "BIOS not detecting SATA drives". If this screen does show your SATA units properly, then the BIOS HAS detected them, and you have a different problem, probably in configuration. In Section 2.3.4 you set the SATA Enhanced Mode. IF you are using Win XP in any version, you should set this to P-ATA. But assuming you're using Win7 or Vista, set this to S-ATA to get best use of your drives.

If your CD is the ONLY device on the IDE port, its jumper MUST be set to Master, and it should be plugged into the END connector on the ribbon cable. I would assume that is how it was on the old mobo, but check it.

Are you re-using your drives from before the mobo change? I would assume you are. It sounds like you are trying to Install your OS on one of them, which is a good idea. You probably cannot simply hook up your drives and expect the new mobo to boot from that - at least, not without some work to fix driver problems.

Assuming you are trying to Install to a previously-used HDD, the Install Process may tell you it cannot find any empty drive to Install to. That is NOT because the BIOS is failing to detect. It is because the drives are all "full" - that is, their entire space is assigned to existing Partitions. To do the Install of the OS, you need either to use its tools to Delete all existing Partitions on the ONE HDD you're installing to, or at least to tell it to use one specific Partition (large enough for the job) to Install to. IF you Install to any existing Partition, be aware it will wipe that entire Partition clean and you will lose all its old data.



i'm certain its the motherboard. its literally not showing the drives AT ALL. it wont even let me update bios because its not finding a drive. thanks again for the help i guess i just have to rma and if something does happen like this again ill refer back to this thread so i dont have to waste peoples time
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March 16, 2012 2:50:03 AM

Best answer selected by enzoja.
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