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WinXP won't recognize older drive, asks to format

Last response: in Windows XP
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January 4, 2003 2:31:36 AM

This is plain weird.
In a previous thread I mentioned having to install a new WD 80GB JB, whilst setting the previously Master 15GB to Slave. After hours of jumper setting, I managed to finally get the board and BIOS to recognize both drives and their priority. Now there's a weird problem, which is that in WinXP, I cannot access my old drive. It mentions it is not formatted!
I had data on it. I did nothing but jumper switching, and there was occasional manual computer shut off, like any natural thing to do when switching and tweaking the computer. I don't understand what's going on. Could it have been entirely deleted?
I personally doubt this. Under the BIOS, it would detect it being 15GB, and at first I thought it was reporting the drive capacity remaining, but then I checked my 80GB drive, it was also mentioned as 80GB Capacity, which proves that the BIOS is not telling me the current remaining drive space. To me it tells me that it probably did not lose its data, the 15GB Maxtor.

Now I formatted my new 80GB with its 2 partitions, to NTFS. The other is FAT32 but NTFS is supposed to be able to read FAT 32 drives!
So what on earth is going on? How can I read this drive? I certainly won't format until I know for sure the data has been lost, which would be just plain weird because I didn't like disconnect the drive or reboot 100 times in 10 seconds!

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January 4, 2003 4:41:50 PM

the bios doesnt report free space, it reports actual size of your drive, it doesnt care whats on the drive. can you access the drive at all?

my computer is so fast, it completes an endless loop in less than 4 seconds!
January 4, 2003 5:59:37 PM

I simply can't inside Windows. The command prompt in WinXP as well will ask to format. I honestly do not know why it is asking me this.

Now what I thought recently, was perhaps, this is not even the 14.2GB drive that is not recognized. The thing is that when installing WinXP and configuring the partitions from the setup, it had left 8MB of unpartitioned space, so I had a C and E drive, C for the OS and system files, and E for my programs, while 8MB was left. I figured this might be normal and perhaps is just special reserved space. I dunno if this might be actually what is in WinXP. But if that is the case, I still won't dare go format the drive to see whether it has 8MB or not, it's risky, I might format my 15GB!
So that leaves me confused and wondering.

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January 4, 2003 6:29:54 PM

your drive is probly fubar. the 8 megs left over has something to do with leftover cluster space. something about a 4 kb cluster not being exactly 4kb, there is a little left over and it all gets wasted at the end of the drive in an 8 meg partition. the smaller the cluster size the less is wasted.

my computer is so fast, it completes an endless loop in less than 4 seconds!
January 4, 2003 8:49:11 PM

Are you talking about my 15GB in all of your reply?

A friend said he had similar thing and had to configure manually something in the BIOS, not sure though, I have it to detect all settings Automatically.

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January 4, 2003 10:40:10 PM

What does the disk manager say about this?
Does it have a letter assigned, and does it show it exists a partition on the disk?
January 5, 2003 3:42:13 PM

The Disk Manager, luckily was not evil with me, it would find the drive. But it still reports as 100% free space which I still don't get how it did that. I never touched or formatted the drive, I only had set the jumpers to CABLE SELECT in order to finally get it working. I am still not convinced it has lost its data.

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January 5, 2003 6:06:52 PM

The drives are set to cable select ? Are you using cable select ribbon cables ? These ribbons have a notch cut in them - cutting a lead. In this case, master and slave is determined by the position on the data ribbon cable. Depending how the system controls the cable select line on the ribbon cable determines where the master and slave need to be attached. Designation of a drive as either master or slave is generally determined by jumper configuration, not by the order in which it is daisy-chained to the other drive, except for cable select.

Logic goes away if it is not the first or seemingly obvious answer to a problem. :eek: 
January 6, 2003 2:00:07 AM

Yes well, that was the problem, I could not have the system detect both drives even with several different jumper configs from both Maxtor and WD's website. I had once at Master and Slave configs, but god knows why it would not detect.

One last thing I am suspecting, is this CLJ jumper config from Maxtor. They have Master and Master with CLJ, Slave and Slave with CLJ and so on. I recall some problem where the BIOS could not detect the drive without setting the jumpers to a priority WITH CLJ, on Maxtor's support website. But in this case it's Windows that isn't wanting to read off it and thinks it is empty and must be formatted to some file system. I am thinking maybe I need to try Cable Select WITH CLJ. But I dunno if that is of any relevance and whether my theory is plausible.
Yes I set into Cable Select because in the end it seemed no jumper config would be smart enough to tell the system, "Yeah this is Master and its name is ... and this is Slave and it's a ..., and ID THEM!"
Only thing I did not try is CLJ configurations.

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