hard drive not seen in bios

Hewlett-packard / N5135
October 17, 2010 at 00:29:35
Specs: Windows XP, 600Mhz 128MB
I have 2 laptops, Micron and HP. I swapped their hard drives for testing purposes. I was having trouble with the micron not being able to recognize its hard drive in bios. Well, neither lap could see the swapped drives, so I swapped them back. Now the HP, which had been OK before, cant see its own drive!!

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October 17, 2010 at 07:12:47
If the hard drive that originally could not be seen was defective it could have also damaged the drive controller. If that was the case you may have also damaged the drive controller on the second laptop.

The drive controller on a laptop also controls the optical (CD) drive. So, if the CD drive shows in the BIOS then the above is probably not the cause.

Post the laptop models and the hard drive capacities.

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October 19, 2010 at 13:51:19
One is an HP N5135 with a 6GB Hard drive. I checked the bios again, there are 2 IDE controllers listed, both of which are enabled. Is that what you mean by "drive controller"? In the bios there is no provision made to check whether the CD unit is recognized, but when I boot up the laptop one of the initial startup screens shows the CD unit in this manner: "hard disc 0, none; hard disc 1, Atapi DVD-CD Rom". Also, when I set the bios to boot from a CD, then startup using an XP install disc, the CD will do its job up to the point where it realizes there is no Hdd recognized. In other words, the startup files are loaded from the CD to the laptop and Xp installation begins. But after the screen pops up asking do I want to install XP, and I press enter, another screen pops up saying " install cannot proceed, no hard drive found". The other lap is a Micron Transport ZX with a 5GB Hdd. It performs similarly. I appreciate your interest! Thanks! Hope we can solve this!

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October 19, 2010 at 14:15:08
That is what I meant. I am wondering why there are two listed. IDE ATA controllers can run two drives. Either hard drive or optical. So, unless your laptop has a bay for a second hard drive I don't know why there are TWO controllers listed.

I assume you verified the connections are correct?

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October 19, 2010 at 21:15:25
On the HP bios, there is listed "primary and secondary channels" of the "Integrated local bus IDE Controller". Sounds like one controller with two channels. The Hdd (hard drive) is plugged into a socket which is soldered to the motherboard, so there's not much possibility of a loose connection. On the Micron, there are two lines in the bios which are pertinent. The first line is "Primary Master 6490MB" and the second line is "Secondary Master DVD/CD-ROM". So I cant say if there's two controllers or one. The hdd also plugs into a socket on the mother board. So again not much chance of a loose hdd connection. On the controller issue, I was probably wrong when I initially stated there are two controllers on each lap. Also, since talking last I have tried a third hdd, 10GB, in each lap, with the same results. Thanks! Where now?

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