I figured it out. I had to activate it through windows.
I have Windows 7 so if your OS is different you may need to adjust the steps.
1. Go to Control Panel
2. Click Administrative Tool
3. Click Computer Management
4. Click Disk Management
You should see the drive listed as "New Volume", but it will be listed as deactivated (or something to that effect). Just look for the one that is the size of the HDD you're trying to use. If you right click on the drive the option to activate it should appear. Then you pick how it was be formated (NTFS, FAT32, etc.) and the drive name (/E: thru /Z: ). You should be able to figure it out from there. It's been awhile so I can't remember exactly how the options were worded.
i really appreciate the help back but i sent it back. but if i get this next one and it is doing the same i will know that it wasn't the board and ill follow what you send because it makes sense.
Yeah, their customer service isn't too good. I asked for technical assistance and their first response was "initiating RMA". No attempt to troubleshoot whatsoever. So I had to figure it out myself. I simply was not willing to take everything apart before I tried everything I could. Especially considering it might take a month or more for turnaround (or so I hear).