Sata 2 and 3 are not recognized

December 7, 2011 at 14:22:34
Specs: Windows XP
My Dell Inspiron with Windows XP does not recognize anything plugged into Sata 2 or Sata 3. Sata 0 and Sata 1 seem to work fine. In the bios setup, Sata 2 and 3 are grey where I can't toggle through disable to activate as I can with the other ones. Any help is appreicated.

See More: Sata 2 and 3 are not recognized

Report •

December 7, 2011 at 14:58:17
"My Dell Inspiron ..."

Not enough info. We need to know which specific model you have - the most reliable way of getting that right is for you to supply the Service tag "number ".

Go here for how to find the Service tag "number":

Tell us what it is.

Report •

December 7, 2011 at 16:46:17
Thanks. Service Tag number is 1D8Y9K1

Report •

December 8, 2011 at 12:12:37
"Service Tag number is 1D8Y9K1"

Entering that Service tag here:
Drivers & Downloads.
Inspiron 531
Service Tag: 1D8Y9K1


Manuals - English

Owner's manual - view -

System Board Components
There are fout SATA headers on the mboard, SATA0 (15), SATA1 (14), SATA2 (10), SATA3 (9) are listed

Removing and Installing Parts

Your computer supports a combination of these devices:

Up to two serial ATA hard drives

One optional floppy drive or an optional Media Card Reader

Up to two CD or DVD drives


Your computer case has only two internal bays for SATA hard drives and two external bays for CD or DVD (optical) drives.

Your mboard has an IDE data header that up to two IDE drives can be connected to, and four SATA data headers.
However, the bios Setup for your mboard may be set by default to only detect SATA drives that are connected to the SATA0 and SATA1 data headers, since you can only install two SATA hard drives in the available two bays..

You can probably change a setting in the bios Setup somewhere so that a SATA drive connected to the SATA2 or SATA3 data header can be detected as well.

As is usually the situation for brand name system bios versions, there is minimal info about what is seen by you in the bios Setup in the manuals for the model, so I can't tell you specfically what you need to change the setting of.

You could try looking here in the bios Setup:
Integrated peripherals
Displays information about peripherals configuration such as Serial ATA, HD Audio, Onboard nVidia LAN and Onboard LAN boot ROM.

The drive detection for SATA2 and SATA3 should be set to Auto or similar, not None or similar, by the method Auto, or LBA for a hard drive.

By the way, there is no advantage of you using a SATA connected optical drive over an IDE connected one, other than convenience. If the max specs of the optical drive are the same otherwise, the optical drive has the same max data transfer speed whether it is connected via an IDE or SATA connection, e.g. probably 66 mbytes/sec - Ultra DMA mode 4 in Windows - for a DVD burner drive.

Report •

Related Solutions

December 8, 2011 at 20:07:57
If you have any drive connected to your IDE header then your BIOS may disable your second two SATA ports OR being a factory system, Dell may have had the second two ports disabled when the BIOS was written, possibly because they were trying to prevent the small stock power supply from being overloaded.

You have to be a little bit crazy to keep you from going insane.

Report •

December 12, 2011 at 14:13:39
According to the Owner's manual, the power supply has 300 watts output capacity, 4 SATA power connectors, and one small (floppy drive sized) molex power connector (and NO larger molex power connectors).
Hard drives and optical drives don't use much power - 300 watts is more than is needed for that.
You would need oddball female ? SATA connector to larger (female pins) molex connector adapters, or a different power supply that has the larger molex power connectors, to connect an IDE hard or optical drive's power.

Report •

November 13, 2012 at 15:59:45
If your MB can only support SATA (often referred to as SATA 1) then you may need to put a jumper on the new drive to make appear as a SATA 1 drive. Check your drive manufacturer website for the jumper position to downgrade to SATA and you should be able to connect the drive successfully.

Report •

Ask Question