2 SATA 160GB NCQ HDDs in Dell Dim 8400

Seagate Desktop external 500gb 3.5
September 24, 2010 at 13:17:44
Specs: Windows XP Pro
My system came with 2 NCQ SATA drives installed and 1 has failed. I want to upgrade to a 500GB SATA NCQ HDD. Do I have to replace both drives? If so, do I replace them both at the same time? Or can I replace the failed one and migrate my data to the new drive first?

See More: 2 SATA 160GB NCQ HDDs in Dell Dim 8400

September 24, 2010 at 13:37:10
Were the 2 drives running in some RAID setting?

If you don't want to use any RAID then you can install non matching drives. You don't necessarily need NCQ either. The concept is good but probably not much difference in real world performance.

Your system may have originally been set to run RAID 1 mirroring. If the one drive is still working OK then that is the likely setup. Either that, or they were simply independent and the OS just happened to be installed on the working drive.

RAID 1 writes the same exact data to both hard drives. Therefore, both must be the same size or the larger one will not utilize the excess capacity. Some controllers may not like unmatched hard drives either.

Do you need mirroring? You could perform regular backups to get the same results. What is the computer used for?

Report •

September 24, 2010 at 13:46:32
I shouldn't have said the one drive failed, but on boot up it shows as "error" in red on the DOS screen. And I can't answer to the RAID question, but as far as backing up the data, I use a Seagate Black Armour external drive. So...do I put in both 500 HDDs and then reload everything? Or do I try to put a new 500 into the failed 160 slot and see if it will "mirror" first?

Report •

September 24, 2010 at 13:49:44
I should add that one drive is assigned to port 0 and the drive with the error is port 2 if that means anything.

Report •

Related Solutions

September 24, 2010 at 13:54:30
First go into Disk Management and see what it shows on both drives.

Do you want to use mirroring? Not necessary if you perform backups anyway.

Report •

September 24, 2010 at 14:27:50
Looked at Disk Management and it only shows the external drive and the 2 CD drives but no HDDs

Report •

September 24, 2010 at 17:31:17
How can that be?

Report •

September 24, 2010 at 22:02:51
If you are booting to some OS then it should show a drive in Disk management.

Report •

Ask Question