Articles

Can't access the hard drive i just installed

November 25, 2009 at 05:44:37
Specs: WinXP, 1.6g/256mb

Hi i just installed a slave drive(secondary master) and it says in disk management that is is healthy/active. When i click onto the drive(e) in my computer it asks if i want to format it and i choice yes but it goes to start doing so then i get an error saying that it is unable to complete the format. I do have the ultimate boot cd so maybe i could format it using one of the tools on that. The slave drive is a western digital and is 250gb.

"The meaning of life is to be happy and useful" Tenzin Gyatso the 14th Dalai Lama


See More: Cant access the hard drive i just installed

Report •


#1
November 25, 2009 at 05:47:45

Error is 'windows was unable to complete the format'.

"The meaning of life is to be happy and useful" Tenzin Gyatso the 14th Dalai Lama


Report •

#2
November 25, 2009 at 06:19:03

From "secondary master" I assume this is an IDE drive(40 pin connector with a wide ribbon cable).

How is the drive jumpered? Is it alone on the cable?

Western digital drives tend to have a different jumper scheme than most other manufactures. On all of the WD HDD's I've seen there are two different settings for master, one for when there is another drive on the cable and normally no jumper when the drive is alone on the cable.

Having the jumper in for master when there isn't a slave normally doesn't stop the drive from working, but it does tend to make the drive very, very slow.

I think this could easily be the cause of the failed format, but then again it could also be a faulty drive.


Batch Variable how to


Report •

#3
November 25, 2009 at 06:32:40

Yep IDE drive and 40 pin cable. It is jumpered as slave and it is shares the cables with the master hard drive. I followed what it said on the drive to set the jumper as my first guess was wrong and when i tried to boot it didn't happen....then...now it boots...well the master drive ofcourse.
Yeah there is a possibility it is a faulty drive as the person that gave it to me didn't know it's origin plus doesn't understand computers at all.....I understand what you saying about he different jumper things as it has an explanation of how things should be set in a diagram format on the drive.
The end of the ribbon cable is on the master drive and the secondary drive has the other thingy....plug? Don't know the name of it i am afraid.

"The meaning of life is to be happy and useful" Tenzin Gyatso the 14th Dalai Lama


Report •

Related Solutions

#4
November 25, 2009 at 07:40:47

Are you running any service packs on your WinXP install? Original WinXP is not 48 bit LBA compliant. That means it can't work with drives larger than 127GB.

How is the drive identified in the POST screens at start up?


Report •

#5
November 25, 2009 at 07:57:59

It has service pack 3 .
Actually i just ran a western digital diagnostic program from the ultimate boot cd and it has 'too many errors' and something about 'contacting the manufacturer' so i would say the thing is no good.
It is listed as the primary slave at post screen

"The meaning of life is to be happy and useful" Tenzin Gyatso the 14th Dalai Lama


Report •

#6
November 25, 2009 at 11:09:59

Put the new HDD on the 2ndary channel.

Report •

#7
November 25, 2009 at 16:52:53

What is the secondary channel?

"The meaning of life is to be happy and useful" Tenzin Gyatso the 14th Dalai Lama


Report •

#8
November 25, 2009 at 19:58:00

What type of drive is the master?

If it just happens to be a drive that does what I described above the master would need to be jumpered to accept a slave.

Since I'm here I might as well answer you question above.

Most older boards had two IDE connectors(same for most IDE add-on cards), new boards usually only have one.

Each of the connecters represent a "channel" (thought it's really the electronics that determines this) that one cable and two drives can be connected to. Usually called the "primary channel" and the "secondary channel", the drives connected are often referred to as "primary master", "primary slave", "secondary master" and "secondary slave".


Batch Variable how to


Report •

#9
November 25, 2009 at 21:03:17

The master is a ide 'hitachi darkstar 82gb hds728080plat20
http://www.hitachigst.com/hdd/suppo...

Yes i did think that the master might not be jumpered correctly but now that i have run the diagnostic program for western digital drives and it says something about too many errors then i thought the slave is pretty much rubbish. I posted above i think about it.

I am also getting during post 'secondary IDE channel no 80 conductor cable installed'. Do they mean 80 pin? and is this relevent? I disconnected the slave and rebooted and that error is still there.

Ah I didn't know about the new board situation. Thanks for that. I haven't heard the term channel before so thanks for claifying that too!

I can take a pic of how both drives are jumpered if that makes things easier.

"The meaning of life is to be happy and useful" Tenzin Gyatso the 14th Dalai Lama


Report •

#10
November 26, 2009 at 01:01:05

If you have it all jumpered up correctly, can't format and wd utils are telling you there are problems I would say that's about as far as you should take things for a second hand hdd.

There is a chance the cable is faulty, especially if it has been disconnected and reconnected a lot, but it's something you would have to test.

The 80 wire cable is a good thing, when they ramped up the speed of ata extra ground wires were added to prevent cross-talk.

In short, I think it might be time to dump the disk and move on, at least you didn't loose any data on it yourself.


Batch Variable how to


Report •

#11
November 26, 2009 at 07:52:52

Yeah I thought so...thanks for everyone's help. I am a bit of a 2nd hand queen and i get most of my stuff working. Mostly i do this for other people that can't afford a new puter. They get real happy about someone like me that helps them understand the puter and fixes it most of the time lol.
Bad news is i think did something to the onboard graphics so now i have to get a video card for this machine.....damn....ah well got plenty of resources so off i go being the 2nd hand queen he he....have a good week everyone!

"The meaning of life is to be happy and useful" Tenzin Gyatso the 14th Dalai Lama


Report •

#12
December 29, 2009 at 04:44:33

OK well i am back. I got a video card for this machine and it is working again now. So will recheck everything now and if everything is fine or not.

"The meaning of life is to be happy and useful" Tenzin Gyatso the 14th Dalai Lama


Report •

#13
December 29, 2009 at 07:17:50

Verify the hard drive in question has been partitioned. That comes before formatting.

Report •

#14
December 29, 2009 at 08:14:16

Bad news. The machine will not boot with the slave attached and this time there is also a clicking noise i didn't notice before. Could be that it was because i didn't have the box open then but it seems pretty loud. I gave it a few reboots and still the same so I have given up. It is all good experience anyway and I am going to use the master drive in another machine as a slave as i am short of storage in that machine. I will give the slave drive another test maybe in the other machine too to see if it will behave there but i have a feeling i did that when i first got that drive so i think it is time to let it go. Thanks OtheHill and everyone else!!!

"The meaning of life is to be happy and useful" Tenzin Gyatso the 14th Dalai Lama


Report •


Ask Question