Drives not detected on Win XP

May 6, 2011 at 20:15:07
Specs: Windows XP
I opened and dusted a friend's computer--fans were clogged with dust--and then could not boot. Bios said no HD or CD drives were enabled. "Install proper boot disk" but she didn't have one and I don't know what happened. Perhaps I dislodged a connection somewhere?

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#1
May 6, 2011 at 20:23:30
If the computer is POSTing then you probably did just loosen a connection. What the message means is Bootable disk (drive). So, the cables between the drives and board may be dislodged. Re-seat them.

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#2
May 6, 2011 at 20:58:34
Thank you! Yes, it is POSTing. I thought it was probably a loosened cable, but there was one bright yellow flat cable not connected to anything but the motherboard. Since I wasn't sure where it went, and couldn't find it in the ASUS manual I just left well enough alone. Whew! I've been cleaning and maintaining my own computers for 20 years, but not anyone else's.

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#3
May 6, 2011 at 23:37:00
Just a FWIW (and from experience), once you get your friend's machine working again, advise her to never place the machine on the floor (assuming she is) to run it. It tends to turn a PC into a very expensive vacuum.

"Channeling the spirit of jboy..."


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Related Solutions

#4
May 7, 2011 at 07:02:03
"there was one bright yellow flat cable not connected to anything but the motherboard"

Sounds like a SATA cable. Did it look like this:

http://www.trait-tech.com/uploads/d...

You must have disconnected it from the hard drive when you were clearing the dust out of the case.


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#5
May 7, 2011 at 07:05:53
Thank you. FWIW that is very good advice. My friend's computer is not on the floor, but she is 88 and has never opened the case. She finally believed me when--even though deaf--she could hear the fans trying to get through the dust. I've tried to convince her not to snack at the computer, but without success.

My own computer is on a low table near the floor as I have no other place to put it, but I clean the fans and dust it once a week or so. If I can hear them turning, I know my expensive vacuum needs a cleaning, including swabbing off the fan blades. I live in a very dusty area, and have cats, so everything here gets regular Dust-Off, including the keyboard.


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#6
May 7, 2011 at 07:17:01
Yes! That is exactly what the cable looks like! I didn't see where it could connect to the HD, but since it's unlike anything in my computer I didn't want to take a chance. I'm not at her house now, so I can't take a closer look for where it plugs in... but the link refers to that cable as a "sata-7-pin-female-to-sata-7-pin-female-locking-latch-data-cable". It's not a connection I'm familiar with, but there can't be too many places on the HD where it will fit. Thank you.

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#7
May 7, 2011 at 07:29:00
I suggest you use canned or compressed air to blow out the case. This works much better than just brushing. Blow out the power supply from both ends too. This is pretty messy so it is best to move the case. I know you didn't say that you did this, but never use a vacuum cleaner on a computer. ElectroStaticDischarge can kill sensitive components.


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#8
May 7, 2011 at 09:23:08
"Yes! That is exactly what the cable looks like!"

Because of the size & L-shape of the plug, it can only be connected to one specific port. You'll see it on the back of the hard drive.

Here's what it looks like on a CD/DVD drive, the HDD will be similar:

http://www.gamingbuilds.com/images/...


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#9
May 7, 2011 at 09:50:13
I always use compressed air. The only wiping I do is on fan the blades off with alcohol if they are coated with dust. Never used a vacuum cleaner anywhere near the computer. I've been maintaining my own computer--we have cats--for more than 20 years but I have never seen dust bunnies so big and numerous. Thank you.

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#10
May 7, 2011 at 09:52:20
Thank you again. With photos of both the cable and the slot it should go into, even I should be able to get her up and running again. BTW, this is the most helpful and polite computer group I've ever found. I really appreciate the time people take to send information.

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#11
May 7, 2011 at 09:53:24
I hope I'm doing the Replies right as I do want to answer everyone who responded. Thank you very much!

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#12
May 7, 2011 at 13:34:12
If you look just above and to the right edge of your post you see an edit button. You can use that to correct spelling or add information. I suggest you don't add info if there are already responses below yours.

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#13
May 7, 2011 at 15:59:40
Thank you. This site is still confusing to me, as I'm not sure how to reply. I have, however, all the information I need to get my friend's computer up and running again. If I've done the posts wrong, I apologise. I'm hoping I won't need to ask anything more. I really appreciate the responses I've received. And now, I will gracefully leave the room, feeling very good.

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