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Install - Windows cannot be installed to this disk

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  • Western Digital
  • Windows 7
Last response: in Windows 7
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January 31, 2013 8:43:27 PM

I have a new 2TB WD SATA drive for my Dell Inspiron 545 to replace a failed 1TB drive. When I get to the part of the install where it asks "Where do you want to install Windows?" there is a message "Windows cannot be installed to this disk."

I clicked "Show Details" and it says "'Windows cannot be installed to this disk. This computer's hardware may not support booting to this disk. Ensure the disk's controller is enabled in the computer's BIOS menu."

I read many threads here and on other sites. The drive is visible in the BIOS and set to IDE, not RAID. The processor is Intel Core 2 Quad Q8200 2.33 GHz. The drive is connected to the same cables as the previous drive.

Any suggestions?

EDIT:
On the "Where do you want to install Windows?" screen,
Disk 0 Unallocated Space, 1863.0GB Total Size, 1863.0GB Free Space
Delete, Format, and Extend are greyed out.

More about : install windows installed disk

a b $ Windows 7
January 31, 2013 9:01:51 PM

Are you installing from an OEM disc or the dell discs...
It sounds to me that the drive needs to be formatted first...
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January 31, 2013 9:43:02 PM

Yesterday I tried using the Dell Vista disc and today I tried a Microsoft Windows 7 disc. Both have the same result.
I am unable to format the drive during either install.

I hooked the drive up to an external enclosure and connected it to my Win7 laptop. I could see the drive but it would hang/error on trying to format it.
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a b $ Windows 7
January 31, 2013 9:52:52 PM

Have you tried creating a smaller partiton and then installing to that?

I have got to say though, the bios may be blocking booting to your 2TB hard drive even though the installation disk can see it.
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January 31, 2013 10:18:47 PM

It could be that it is 2TB or it could be that the disc has bad sectors.
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a b $ Windows 7
January 31, 2013 11:25:53 PM

Hello... First create a partiton and size for it... re-boot... format that partition... install windows on the formated partition.
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a b $ Windows 7
January 31, 2013 11:30:07 PM

travis23832 said:
I have a new 2TB WD SATA drive for my Dell Inspiron 545 to replace a failed 1TB drive. When I get to the part of the install where it asks "Where do you want to install Windows?" there is a message "Windows cannot be installed to this disk."

I clicked "Show Details" and it says "'Windows cannot be installed to this disk. This computer's hardware may not support booting to this disk. Ensure the disk's controller is enabled in the computer's BIOS menu."

I read many threads here and on other sites. The drive is visible in the BIOS and set to IDE, not RAID. The processor is Intel Core 2 Quad Q8200 2.33 GHz. The drive is connected to the same cables as the previous drive.

Any suggestions?

EDIT:
On the "Where do you want to install Windows?" screen,
Disk 0 Unallocated Space, 1863.0GB Total Size, 1863.0GB Free Space
Delete, Format, and Extend are greyed out.


If I remember correctly, that BIOS has the option to set the drive to AHCI. Try setting it to that instead of IDE/RAID and see if it allows it.

EDIT:
Actually just looked over the BIOS again and it should be set to RAID and not IDE as the computer will not see it as a SATA drive any other way.

You may also want to run diagnostics on the drive by creating a Hiren's CD
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February 4, 2013 10:27:32 AM

It may have been either of two different issues. The first issue was that I could not get the drive to format when connected to two other machines, three total. Also, maybe the desktop I was installing it in could not work with a 2TB drive.

I returned the drive and got a 1TB drive instead of the 2TB. The 1TB drive worked fine. The drive was set to IDE in the BIOS. RAID did not work.
Thanks for your help.
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March 28, 2013 6:18:11 PM

Don't know if you have fixed that problem yet, but I just ran into the same problem. What I did was went into the bios and tried to change it to IDE. That did not work. It wasn't even available. But, if that is not available, you can change it to compatibility mode, restart, then install on the original partition. Also, before you do that you may delete the other partitions you've created, if you hadn't done so already.

Hope this helps.
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