Hard Drive replacement

Compact presario / S4300nx
July 22, 2009 at 08:37:34
Specs: Windows XP
My samsung sv1204H 120GB ATA-100 drive crashed. Can I replace it with any ATA-100 drive? Can I upgrade to a ATA-133? I only have about 40GB of data. Is there any disadvantage to upgrading to a large drive? The cost between 150GB and 500 GB is very small. I contacted WD but they would not make any recommendations. Any brand better than another?

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July 22, 2009 at 08:56:25
First tell us how you plan to reload Windows? Do you have native Windows XP installation CD or are you going to use Compaq Restoration CDs? If it is the latter, it will not work because the new hard drive (whatever brand) would not be branded in order for the Restoration CD to synch with it.


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July 22, 2009 at 09:47:10
Explain what you mean by "crashed"?

You have to check your motherboard specs to see if it supports larger HDD's. ATA100 vs ATA133 isn't a problem, but I doubt you'd wanna install a 500GB HDD & then find that only 128GB is recognized.

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July 22, 2009 at 09:56:06
Stick with Western Digital. Over 10 year of experience, they are the most reliable. Maxtor use to make what I would consider to be the 2nd best, but ever since Seagate started making their drives, they have been failing a lot. I performed data recovery on 5 hard drives in the last 6 months. 2 were Maxtor Externals (One Touch, USB) I took out of the enclosure, 2 were Seagate internal drives, and 1 was a Maxtor internal drive. I am usually suprised when i see a WD drive fail.

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Related Solutions

July 22, 2009 at 13:25:57
I plan to use the Compaq recovery disks to reinstall the software. I don't have a copy of XP other than through the recovery.

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July 22, 2009 at 13:32:15
I ran a disk check utility since the drive was responding with various error message. On the deep scan it shut down and ran chkdsk which found about a dozen files with lost cluster. The drive rebooted and I backed up my data file except for the ones with damage. Some of my windows files where damaged and two recovery files where damaged. I ran the utility again and got a WMI file error and then it shut down on the deep disk scan again. It would not boot again. I got various messages including window command com missing, boot sector damage and I/O errors. I never got past the bios after this. The drive spins but sound stuck as it makes a clicking sound.

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July 22, 2009 at 19:46:23

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July 22, 2009 at 21:01:26
No, i used the utility on FIX-IT Utilities 8. I also tried the utilities in XP accessories to try and isolate the lost clusters. It closed down and would not restart. I saw this utility on the web. I was still hoping to not destroy all of the files on my drive until I was sure I had no recovery choices.

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July 27, 2009 at 08:56:10
Hi, I down loaded the samsung HUTIL onto a bootable CD and used it to test my drive. The program kept failing on nearly every menu choice. From dos I tried to run FDISK which ran fine for a few minutes and then hung up on one spot on the disk and never moved for three hours. After this it would not even recognize drive C in DOS. I assume the drive is dead.

I opened the box and I have a P4SD-LA Motherboard according to the HP specification it will support IDE UDMA 100 and SATA-150 disk drives. I can see the SATA connection on the board.

I assume installing an SATA drive will improve my performace, is that correct? Does the 150 indicate the maximum drive size?

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August 4, 2009 at 05:58:12
This is my final post on this issue. I appreciate all of the input from this and other sites.

I replaced my samsung sv120h 120 GB ATA-100 hard drive with a Western Digital WD3200KSRTL 320 G SATA II drive ($79). My system recognizes the entire 320 GB and it works great. My system is working much faster. Whether this is the new drive, reinstalling all of the software, or a combination of both I don't know but it is operating well. Note: the samsung drive mean time to failure was 50,000 hours and I had 53,000 hours on it. I will pay attension to this in the future and be better prepared for failure.

The details.

I tried compaq recovery system and it failed. I ran disk scan and it failed and rebooted the system in to a chkdsk run that repaired 15 lost cluster files. Some of these where recovery and system files. At his point the system would not reboot. A located and ran the Samsung HD utilities and they failed to run. I could boot on floppy disk but nothing would work on the C: drive. Finally I ran Fdisk with the intend to reformat. After this failed the DOS prompt could not find the C: drive. I assumed the drive was dead and moved on.

WD makes both SATA II and ATA drives that are backwards compatible. For those like me that did not know, ATA and SATA just refers to the data transfer speed of the interface controller. The drive has to be compatable with the speed of the controller on you computer. You can find this information on the spec sheet for you motherboard. The motherboard has the model number printed on it in big letters or it may be listed by your manufacturer. My motherboard had SATA I and IDE plugs so I bought a SATA II drive that had jumpers to set it to SATA I mode. The drive did not come with a four pin to 15 pin power supply adapter only the data cable. I had to buy the power cable adapter seperately since my system used the old four pin power supply cables for the hard drive. The drive was easy and a snap to replace.

I bought a set of Compaq recovery discs from Computer Surgeons for my model. I did not make recovery discs before my original drive partition was damaged when I got the computer. If you have not made recovery discs, I suggest you do so to avoid spending $30 in the future. Despite the comment above the recovery disks, they recovered my system and booted up the original software in just under 2 hours.

Now the easy part was over. The HP Compaq support site had four firmware updates and about 30 software updates it suggested I download and install before doing a windows update. Most of these went on one at a time and rebooted the system. This took several hours. Then I ran windows update four times before everything was upto date. I did a system restore between each change so I could back up. The only update problem was Exporer 8. It kept causing system errors so I uninstalled it and installed Explorer 7 which works fine. Now with windows working well and internet access restored I installed the rest of my software and updated each piece.

Wikapedia was great in helping understand the terms and getting the big picture about standards and hardware systems. Hope no one else needs this post, but if you have my bad luck I hope this helps you solve it. Take care. Bill

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