Solved Bios Will Not Recognize Hard Drive

August 21, 2012 at 17:42:32
Specs: Windows XP, 1GB Ram

I emailed asus support about this issue also and the person who helped me even said they did not have any idea what it could be either. Here is what I said:

Asus 1005hab Eee Pc (netbook)

I am a computer technician and have came across a rare problem

The problem : Bios will not recognize the hard drive no matter what I have tried.

What I have tried: I replaced the hard drive and still didn't recognize it. Tested the old
hard drive in an exact copy of the machine (another 1005hab netbook) and it worked
fine. I flashed the bios to newer versions and older versions and still did not work. I
replaced the MB to DAU cable and still did not recognize it. I switched the Daughter
board with the other 1005hab daughter board I have and still did not recognize. I tried slip-streaming the ahci driver to the windows xp installation and didn't do any good. I've changed bios settings to IDE and compatible and tried every setting possible in there and still will not recognize any hard drive. I have reset the bios by unplugging the battery from the motherboard.

So that only leaves 2 things it could be in my mind: the motherboard or the bios chip.
The reason I said rare problem is normally when the motherboard or bios chip is bad then access to bios is normally impossible in my experience, but here it is not the case. So, I'm clueless. I do notice that when the bios posts, it never says auto detecting primary hard drive like it does on the other 1005hab I have that works fine. Please throw your ideas at me if I have not covered them. Thanks.


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✔ Best Answer
August 21, 2012 at 20:49:54

As you know, when a hard drive does not show up in the BIOS, it generally is the hard drive or the power or drive (signal) cable. Since you have verified the drive and the cable, if you can verify that the proper voltages are going to the drive, then the problem ("my dear Watson") must be in the motherboard or the connection of the cable to the motherboard (the socket for this cable). You are left using process of elimination and when you eliminate all other possibilities, then you are left with the answer, however unlikely. It is even less likely to be the BIOS since (as you said), you otherwise appear to have full access to it.
Since the drive works and you swapped out everything else between there and the motherboard, and tried another drive anyway, then it can only be at or in (on?) the motherboard itself. There really is nothing else. Simplest would be a simple break in a poor solder joint where the socket is attached to the motherboard. That, is at least repairable for someone who has experience soldering on circuit boards. Use a magnifying glass to examine these joints and visible components on the motherboard, power board (if separate), and any other similar connections.
Edit (added):
Bad joints:
http://home.cogeco.ca/~rpaisley4/xS...
Video that might help (I did not watch it myself though):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5dG0...

You have to be a little bit crazy to keep you from going insane.



#1
August 21, 2012 at 18:07:41

Does any drive show up in bios?

Do the voltages show correctly to the drive?

Are the cables damaged?

Google is evil


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#2
August 21, 2012 at 19:41:54

It does not have a cd-rom drive, but yes it will recognize an external cd-rom drive or usb flash drive in bios. This is how I tried installing windows xp again with the slip-stream cd but of course no hard drive was detected.

It is SATA connection to the daughter board so the only cable is the daughter to motherboard cable which I have also replaced and tried.

How can I go about checking voltages to the drive? The bios does not give these figures.


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#3
August 21, 2012 at 20:02:03

Page 48 of the manual refers to Boot Booster. This must be set to disabled in order to boot from any other device. I suggest you disable it and then try booting to a flash drive with a live version of Linux on it. That may help diagnose the issue. It may also allow the BIOS to recognize the hard drive.

Is the hard drive you are using the same brand and capacity as the original. It appears the original was 160GB SATA 1.5.

That unit also can boot to LAN. I assume you have verified the boot order is set for hard drive first?


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Related Solutions

#4
August 21, 2012 at 20:49:54
✔ Best Answer

As you know, when a hard drive does not show up in the BIOS, it generally is the hard drive or the power or drive (signal) cable. Since you have verified the drive and the cable, if you can verify that the proper voltages are going to the drive, then the problem ("my dear Watson") must be in the motherboard or the connection of the cable to the motherboard (the socket for this cable). You are left using process of elimination and when you eliminate all other possibilities, then you are left with the answer, however unlikely. It is even less likely to be the BIOS since (as you said), you otherwise appear to have full access to it.
Since the drive works and you swapped out everything else between there and the motherboard, and tried another drive anyway, then it can only be at or in (on?) the motherboard itself. There really is nothing else. Simplest would be a simple break in a poor solder joint where the socket is attached to the motherboard. That, is at least repairable for someone who has experience soldering on circuit boards. Use a magnifying glass to examine these joints and visible components on the motherboard, power board (if separate), and any other similar connections.
Edit (added):
Bad joints:
http://home.cogeco.ca/~rpaisley4/xS...
Video that might help (I did not watch it myself though):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5dG0...

You have to be a little bit crazy to keep you from going insane.


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#5
August 22, 2012 at 06:40:35

Othehill, There is not a boot booster option anymore on this hard drive because it has been reformatted. Boot booster is put on there by Asus just like the recovery to factory state image. Both of those are gone. But I did try using the recovery to factory method before I reformatted and it did not work either. This was of course when the hard drive was still recognizable.

Yes the hard drive is the original. It works fine in the other 1005hab. Yes boot order is hard drive first. I don't understand how booting to Linux live on a usb drive could help it recognize the hard drive.

Fingers, I'm thinking along the same lines as you. I have soldered many times before and I have actually inspected the motherboard for loose connections but haven't found anything as of yet. Though, I still believe it to be the motherboard. I just didn't want to hear that because honestly it will not be worth replacing when you can buy these little netbooks pretty cheap now.

I believe it to be the data cable connection/socket on the motherboard that has the mother and daughterboard cable going from/to it. B/c like you said I have ruled out the daughterboard also by switching them around which is where the hard drive is connected.
I guess the next step to make super sure is to switch around the motherboards in both of them. Then if it works fine then, I will do some more inspecting for re-soldering. Hopefully I will find the culprit.


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#6
August 22, 2012 at 07:15:27

Booting to Linux would determine the issue is not with the BIOS.

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#7
August 25, 2012 at 12:05:44

It was the motherboard after all. I switched the motherboard with the working 1005hab and it recognized the hard drive just fine. So, that is actually a first with me. Lesson for the future....which is just b/c there is access to the bios does not mean the motherboard is fine. Thanks guys.

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#8
August 25, 2012 at 17:59:45

Glad you found the problem. I am not sure how expensive the MB is to replace but it may be cheaper to replace the machine. Unless of course you can get it cheap or they are willing to warranty it.

You have to be a little bit crazy to keep you from going insane.


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#9
August 26, 2012 at 07:06:50

yeah I'm not replacing it. Cheapest is like 72 bucks. I told the customer it's not worth it.

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