new bios need for 2T harddisk ?

January 17, 2012 at 10:30:17
Specs: Windows XP

I have a ~5 years old Intel motherboard and I intended to install a new 2T harddisk on it. The motherboard was not able to recognized it (the 2T did not show up on the bootable device list). I can hear and feel the disk is running. Do I need to flash the bios in order to get it work? If I buy an external disk case, would things get easier? In my limited knowledge (maybe 10 years old), I heard that a physical HDD can only take a max. of 4 partitions only. Have that changed over the years? With a 2T, I don't think 4 partition would be enough for me. That would be a window issue or a bios one? Thanks for your time and help.


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January 17, 2012 at 10:59:27
That sounds more like a physical connection problem than a BIOS issue. Most BIOSs from 2004 on up have a limit into the petabyte range. Even if your BIOS was limited, the device should still show up, albeit with a lesser capacity.

If this is a SATA hard drive and your motherboard has more than 4 connectors, try plugging it into another connector. The extra ones are usually only useful if you have RAID enabled in the BIOS.

As for partitions, the limit is only for primary partitions, not for extended partitions. The limit is still true for IBM-compatible BIOSs, but usually not for other firmware like EFI. The number of partitions does not affect whether or not the BIOS can detect the hard drive.

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January 17, 2012 at 12:03:47
Did you connect BOTH the power and data cables?

Are you running at least WinXP SP1?

Is the new drive a SATA type? Do you have any other SATA hard drives installed?

If not, you may need to install SATA controller drivers.

If you don't have SP3 installed, I suggest you install it now. Go to the link below and download it.

Are you sure you are looking for the new drive in the POST screens BEFORE Windows starts?

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January 19, 2012 at 21:43:35
Hi guys / gals,

Thanks for the input. I borrowed a machine from my friend which has a bios 2 years younger. The drive can be detected and now I have to find out what version of my MB is and learn how to flash it. No physical problem with the drive though it behave a bit odd when I try in on my friend's machine. All I need to do now is to 'flash' my bios and hopefully get it work. This could be the worst nightmare for I had done that years ago and the machine just cannot booted again.

Thanks for your time and help


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January 20, 2012 at 06:46:07
If your motherboard is only 5 years old the BIOS is NOT the problem. Don't waste your time flashing it.

You do understand that a new hard drive will NOT be bootable until you have installed an operating system on it.

Look for the new hard drive in Windows Disk Management. You will need to partition and format it there and possibly assign one or more drive letters.

You didn't respond to any of the questions posed above. WinXP does not natively support SATA hard drives.

Is your intent to install WinXP onto the new 2TB drive?

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