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  • Hard Drive/CD Drive Issue

    My computer seems to have some ghosts, so I thought I post the problem here and see if anyone could help out.

    I have one SATA HDD and an IDE DVD drive in the computer. To have a backup of some of hte files on the HDD, I bought a second internal hard drive (SATA II); I figured I'd put it in, format it, copy files, and be done.

    However, I've put the HDD on both the other SATA port on the motherboard and the SATA II. In both cases, it shows up fine in the BIOS, but doesn't register as a drive in Windows. In fact, Windows shows both a CD drive and a DVD drive even though there is no CD drive.

    I tried uninstalling the primary HDD and just putting in the new drive and a bootable WinXP disk in the DVD drive and I get a BSOD error partway through the install. (The same error happened with two different XP install disks.)

    Any thoughts? Is this computer just cursed?

  • #2
    Does your computer actually support SATA II (300MB/sec)? Are both drives on the same SATA controller? Whose SATA controller is it (nVidia, Intel, AMD/ATI, etc)? What brands are the hard drives?

    Where in the install do you get the BSOD? Can you sucessfully copy all the files form your XP disk to your HD?
    With a shovel...

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Kevin_Wadsworth
      My computer seems to have some ghosts, so I thought I post the problem here and see if anyone could help out.

      I have one SATA HDD and an IDE DVD drive in the computer. To have a backup of some of hte files on the HDD, I bought a second internal hard drive (SATA II); I figured I'd put it in, format it, copy files, and be done.

      However, I've put the HDD on both the other SATA port on the motherboard and the SATA II. In both cases, it shows up fine in the BIOS, but doesn't register as a drive in Windows. In fact, Windows shows both a CD drive and a DVD drive even though there is no CD drive.

      I tried uninstalling the primary HDD and just putting in the new drive and a bootable WinXP disk in the DVD drive and I get a BSOD error partway through the install. (The same error happened with two different XP install disks.)

      Any thoughts? Is this computer just cursed?
      The new hard drive likely isn't formatted and therefore won't show up in Windows until it is. Put it back to the way you had it where both drives showed up in the bios and then boot Windows. Right click on My Computer, choose Manage, then on the left side highlight Disk Management. On the right side you should see a new disk that needs to be initialized and formatted. Do both (basic disk is fine, quick format or else you'll be waiting all day) and it will then assign it a drive letter. At that point you should see it and be able to write to it.

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      • #4
        I assumed that Kevin is savvy enough to know about the Disk Management Console and that the drives doesn't show up there, but perhaps I'm wrong. I always recommend doing a full format the first time you format a drive to make sure it's 100% working with no bad sectors instead of a quick format.
        With a shovel...

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Stereodude
          I assumed that Kevin is savvy enough to know about the Disk Management Console and that the drives doesn't show up there, but perhaps I'm wrong. I always recommend doing a full format the first time you format a drive to make sure it's 100% working with no bad sectors instead of a quick format.

          Thanks for your confidence, Seth. Sadly, it was misplaced. :doh! 1:

          I'm not sure how I didn't know about that; I guess this is the first new HD install I've ever done. I assumed it would show up as an unformatted drive in Windows Explorer.

          To answer the other questions, the motherboard does support SATA II, although I do not know whose controller. (Motherboard is here: http://www.asrockamerica.com/Products/939DSATA2.htm)

          When trying the fresh Windows install, the BSOD occurs during the loading process, before it gets to any user prompts. I don't know if the files copy form the CD to the HDD; I'll give that a shot.

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          • #6
            Well, after you format the drive then you should be fine.
            You are probably BSODing because the generic drivers on the XP install CD don't work with your motherboard/drives and you would need to make a custom startup disc.

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            • #7
              The motherboard could be set to AHCI instead of IDE and causing his issue.
              With a shovel...

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              • #8
                Thanks again for the help, guys. The format of the new drive worked just fine.

                I still can't get it to install Windows on the second drive. I can't figure out how to do that from within Windows - if I run the install CD it wants to put it on C: and not any other drive, an dif I swap the drive order so the new drive is first, the install still crashes. I'll see if I can find an XP disk to borrow, perhaps the disc is the problem.

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                • #9
                  You can't do that from within Windows.

                  What Service Pack revision is your Windows XP disk? If it's not SP3 I'd recommend copying the disc to your HD, slip streaming SP3 on it and re-burning it.
                  With a shovel...

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                  • #10
                    For what it's worth, my desktop had XP and my laptop had Vista. I moved them both to Windows 7 about 5-6 weeks ago and I'm thrilled with stability/functionality.

                    I mention this in case you haven't considered Win 7. Looks like the timing would be good for you.
                    Ray

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                    • #11
                      Regarding the BSOD issue when installing Windows, this is most likely because of a lack of an appropriate AHCI driver (Stereodude alluded to this).

                      Windows XP does not have built-in support for AHCI controllers, so you have to supply one. When the setup first runs, you will see a message at the bottom of the screen saying something like "Hit F6 to install 3rd-party drivers". In order to use this function, you have to have a disk (usually a floppy disk) with the AHCI controller drivers on it.

                      One other way to install is to go into the machine's BIOS and change the SATA HDD config from AHCI mode to COMPATIBILITY mode (or whatever term that isn't AHCI). Then Windows will install to completion. Once fully installed, you can then install the AHCI drivers from within Windows, reboot and re-enable AHCI mode - the actual driver installs after booting up with AHCI enabled.

                      Check with your computer manufacturer's website or driver disk to see if you have hard drive controller drivers. The documentation should have the installation specifics included. Very common AHCI controllers are from Intel, and they often provide a tool called the Intel Matrox Storage Manager (or IMSM).

                      BTW, Windows 7 will install without having to jump through the same hoops. Just make sure the BIOS setting IS set to AHCI when first installing.

                      Good luck....

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