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Windows 7: A Sata Hard Drive RANT ? (Story)

17 Dec 2013   #1

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate and numerous virtual machines
A Sata Hard Drive RANT ? (Story)

OK, so the final box of upgrades finally arrived for my PC's so I installed them over this past weekend. I put the Gigabyte Radeon 7770 card in the machine and then decided to say goodbye to my 32 bit Windows 7 installation which frankly I never used other than to run the updates on every month. I took out the 160 GB hard drive and rearranged the hard drives so my Toshiba 256Gb SSD was drive 0. I still have 2 other Windows 7 installations I wanted to hang on to for now so used Easy BCD to configure all that after installing Windows in no time at all and then a pile of updates. Where is SP2 Micro$oft? The updates take longer than installs. Then I installed office, another 50+ updates and then my programs like Winamp and my drivers and so on. After I had rearranged the hard drives my 2TB Seagate drive which is barely 3 months old and contains my virtual machines and other technical stuff kept disappearing. I really hate Sata connectors, they have a habit of doing this and usually it is a poor contact so I replaced the cable. OK not good, the plastic part of the connector stayed in the plug. Not only that the sata power cable to another drive fell apart. I paid $225 for a 1000w Enermax PSU and I don't expect their molex connectors to fall to pieces. So that cable is on the floor while I hunted and found another one to solve that issue. So what to do with a 3 month old hard drive where the connector broke off. I assume it is because I cable tie all the wiring in my Rocketfish Lian Li clone case as there is nowhere to hide wires like new cases. This probably put too much strain on the sata cable and the crappy plastic connectors. So I looked up the hard drive and a board is available from a company in Canada. Then I remembered behind my monitors in my "junk" pile is a Seagate HD 2TB which went bad with tons of errors. Blast different board so can't swap it. So I decided it would become a donor and I would remove the broken connector off of the good HD and put the good connector on the good HD. Took me about an hour yeasterday morning but it worked just fine. Would have been easier to have just put a new connector on but cannot find the part anywhere. Let this be a lesson to everyone. I am lucky as I can solder and I have all the equipment to do so, magnifier, light , de-soldering braid , pick tools etc. So it is all working now and I hate SATA connectors even more now, they are flimsy, electrically unsatisfactory as they work lose, corrode and tarnish and plain just break.
Just treat SATA cables with the greatest respect and leave plenty of slack on the cables if you cable tie them. The thermal variations in a case can break stuff over time. I think it is a plan by the hard drive industry to make the connectors flimsy so most people replace the drives.
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