Replcmt Drive Not Seen by BIOS

Dell / OPTIPLEX
May 20, 2010 at 05:50:16
Specs: SUSe Linux, 1.8 GHZ / 512
Put a spare drive into a spare (formerly WinXP) Dell machine. Ran an auto-install of SUSe Linux and everything worked fine for the entire evening.

When I shut down and went to restart the machine, BIOS said no hard drive was detected. Setup screen only gives me the option of AUTO and NONE. I know there's a drive in there because I see it, SUSe said there is, and it partitioned it and loaded everything on it just fine.

I had to have missed a step in putting in the drive, but since I'm not using Windows, I believed the typical disk utilities were not necessary. Where did I botch this and how do I get the hardware to see the drive on bootup? Thanks to everyone who can help.

Al Peterson
Washington DC


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#1
May 20, 2010 at 08:18:19
The OS has nothing to do with your BIOS not seeing the drive. There are only a couple reasons that the BIOS will not see a drive...

1) Cable not connected right or jumpers not set right.
2) Drive Failed.
3) Drive Controller Failed.

I think 1 is out because you saw it last night. It could be 2 but I suspect 3 because you said this is the second drive you had in this system and I am guessing that you had similar problems with your other drive. You probably thought it was a bad drive when in actuality it was your drive controller that was failing. This is just an assumption you need to give us more details to go on.


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#2
May 20, 2010 at 09:02:30
Ace, thanks for some good input. You're right, I need to get more specific.

It could be 2 but I suspect 3 because you said this is the second drive you had in this system and I am guessing that you had similar problems with your other drive.

---Actually no. Both are just spare working units that were laying around the boneyard, that I decided to put together. The PC originally had a fully functional WinXP hard drive that got repurposed somewhere else in the vast universe of junk I call home.

You probably thought it was a bad drive when in actuality it was your drive controller that was failing.

--- Not a bad thought. But it still seems wacky that SUSe talked to my drive just fine and yet cannot be found during startup now. I'll sock the cables down more firmly when I get home.

But while I'm at it, I may as well just blow up the installation and start over again (TV sucks tonight anyway). Before I do anything else and before I even try to get an OS installed, what should I do to get the BIOS to recognize that this drive is connected? U think something on the Ultimate Boot CD might be of help?

Al Peterson
Washington DC


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#3
May 20, 2010 at 10:00:34
Sounds like the drive you just installed may not be in the boot order correctly.

As Ace stated, the OS has nothing to do with the BIOS configuring a hard drive. Are you sure you aren't just masking the POST screens with a logo for the motherboard manufacturer?

Boot into the BIOS screens and disable all logos and fast boot.

What interface are both drives in question (IDE/ATA or SATA)?

If SATA you may need to set the BIOS settings for the drive to AHCI.


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#4
May 20, 2010 at 11:22:49
I'll give it a go tonight, thanx.

Al Peterson
Washington DC


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