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Windows 7: advice on hard drive detection problem

14 Feb 2012   #1
F0ICE

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 
advice on hard drive detection problem

a few months back my computer was working fine but one day it suddenly rebooted with a disk boot failure message.

when this happened both my OS drive and my data drive were not found by bios.
so both appeared to fail at the same time.

when i tested the drives on another person's PC both drives were found by BIOS no problems and my OS drive even booted and shutdown fine.

i narrowed it down to 4 possibilities from my knowledge

  1. bad SATA cables
  2. bad power supply
  3. bad SATA controller/ports
  4. the drives being detected on the second PC was a total fluke and the drives are bad
i bought a new power supply and SATA cables and the BIOS still doesn't find my drives.



so i am thinking the SATA controller/ports is the issue and i am thinking about getting a new motherboard but i want to make sure that i am not missing some else.



also my IDE dvd drives seem to work fine just the SATA is the problem.


does any one have any advice or feedback on this issue such as other potential problem sources i didn't think of etc.


all feedback appreciated.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
15 Feb 2012   #2
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

Two things to try:
  • Reset the Bios Defaults
  • Clear CMOS/CLRTC procedure
Be sure to make note of all your important BIOS settings before doing either so you can set them back.

CLRTC Procedure (Clear CMOS procedure is similar):
  • Note all your current BIOS settings
  • Shut down the computer > remove the power cord.
  • Remove the 3v battery.
  • Move the CLRTC jumper from pins 1-2 to 2-3.
  • Touch a metal part of the case and Press and Hold the reset button for approx. 30 seconds to discharge all power from the board.
  • Put the CLRTC jumper back on pins 1-2.
  • Replace the 3v battery > replace the power cord > boot.
  • Immediately go back into BIOS and reset all your preferred settings. If the CLRTC worked you will need to reset the date and time.
See if the ports are active after doing either of these.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2012   #3
F0ICE

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

i followed the clear CMOS procedure with and without removing the battery and in either case the drives were still not detected.

thanks for that idea TVeblen because i didn't think of it.

i also doubled check my power requirements and i required just under 500W and my new Power supply is 550W so i should have plenty of power.

thanks for the advice.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

15 Feb 2012   #4
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

Yes, so it seems more likely that the SATA controller on the motherboard has failed.

As one final test you could disconnect and/or disable all the devices in the system to get as close to just 1 hard drive as possible (plus video, RAM, and processor, of course) and see if that makes any difference.

Probably not worth the cost of the parts, but if the board has an IDE connector you could see if the IDE controller still works with a SATA to IDE adapter.

Along those lines, does the board have a secondary SATA controller, like a Marvell controller?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2012   #5
F0ICE

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

yeah a SATA to IDE would just make the drive slower even if it worked. so that is not even worth the money like you said.

i tried stripping it down to essentials components only once before but it never hurts to try again.

as for a secondary controller no it only has two SATA 1 ports what the controller is i can't say as i never had any SATA drivers available even when i used XP. in addition HP doesn't provide anything either.

i have been looking for a different motherboard for quite some time but socket 939 parts are hard to come by.

the board only has 1 PCI express x16 slot (video card) and the rest are standard PCI. and i know putting a SATA card on the PCI bus is really going to affect the speed so that is not worth the money.

i guess the SATA ports failing is no surprise considering the age of my PC.

getting the new motherboard would help since it supports SATA 2.

i am just praying that i don't waste money getting the new MB and the drives still turn out to be bad. despite that i think it is extremely unlikely since they worked just fine on a different PC.

i will try stripping it to essentials when i get home.

and thanks for your advice on the matter.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2012   #6
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

Connecting the drives to the IDE controller is not meant to be a permanent solution. It would just be to test.

You want to know if the drives are good. If they work on the IDE channel then that would answer your question, plus, it would determine that the SATA controller is gone and that it is not a larger problem like the northbridge contoller or the system bus.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2012   #7
F0ICE

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

sorry i should have understood that the first time around.
$10-15 would be better than shelling out $130.
i will try to get a converter and i pray that it works since my data wasn't backed up.
though now i have an external 3TB drive so i can backup if i can get it to boot.

thanks for the help.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Feb 2012   #8
F0ICE

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

i just got the adapter today and my drives are working!
so that means its the motherboard without a doubt.

thanks for your help on this problem.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Feb 2012   #9
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

Sorry to hear about the motherboard.
Glad to hear about the drives.
Congrats.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Feb 2012   #10
F0ICE

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

the motherboard going bad is kind of a good thing since i wanted a new one and the current one had other weird problems as well.

later
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 advice on hard drive detection problem




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