Windows 7 can't read 2.5 IDE disk from dock?

September 29, 2011 at 02:30:59
Specs: Windows 7
Hi guys!

I've just bought an "All in 1 HDD Docking station 875" ( It recognizes the dock and installs it in seconds on Windows 7, and the it comes up in My Computer as "Storage unit".

However, it doesn't recognize my Seagate 2.5" IDE harddrive. When clicking the storage unit icon in My Computer, it just said 'No disk drive found / inserted'.

I've read that it may be a slave / master issue, however my harddrive does not have an option to change this (as far as I can see). I've also read that newer computers with SATA hdd can't read IDE?
Is this accurate? Can I change / install something to allow that?

For the record, I am running Windows 7 Home Edition on a new Dell XPS (also tried on brand new inspiron), the docking station is otherwise working (reads sd cards etc, power and led working ok), and the IDE in the docking station is taken from an old laptop and has data on it that I'd like to extract. The IDE harddisk I'm trying to read is Seagate Momentus 5400.2 IDE (

Any suggestions?

Thanks so much!

See More: Windows 7 cant read 2.5 IDE disk from dock?

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September 29, 2011 at 05:02:23
First thing to try is a definitely working drive in the dock - that eliminates whether it's a problem with the dock or the drive. I've got a similar dock and with the majority of 2.5" IDE drives they use 'cable select' by default (some older ones did have jumpers on the base but I haven't seen any like that for years). Because you are connecting to your main computer using USB it makes no difference whether the dock has an IDE or a SATA drive - the circuitry in the dock should do the conversion.

"I've always been mad, I know I've been mad, like the most of us..." Pink Floyd

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September 29, 2011 at 07:42:35
The 2.5" IDE hard drive should have pins to install a jumper for selecting Master/slave or CS (cable select). Your drive most likely didn't come with any jumper installed because normally a laptop will only have one hard drive. You may need to install a jumper as mentioned in #1 above. See the link below for on help on those pins.

I agree with the remainder of response #1 too. Is the laptop drive even a working hard drive?

Did any software come with the docking station? Although Windows 7 configured the docking station there may still be a need to install additional software.

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September 29, 2011 at 13:47:25
In some of those deals you have to take out any master/slave jumper to get it to work.

1/3 of highway deaths are caused by drunks. The rest are by people who can't drive any better than a drunk.

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September 29, 2011 at 17:55:06
Thank you so much for taking the time to help.

I don't know much about harddrives, but from what I can read online, setting master / slave is something you do on the very outside of the pins? If you have a look at the dock, it actually just reads the inner half of the pins ( Does that mean that the dock neglects any slave / master setting?

And if I were to set slave / master manually, how would one go about that? The how-to's I find online all refer to disks that has power supplies and pins specificially set aside for this function.

Can you please give me a link / quick explanation on how to install a jumper? (and what this essentially is / does).

Oh, and the harddrive works. It was taken from a laptop that worked until it couldn't charge anymore (power supply problem).

Thanks again :)

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September 29, 2011 at 19:11:02
In almost all hard drives they have some notation telling what the pins are for.

Yes, the larger connector is to be used for the data connector. The smaller one usually near the power connector is for various jumpers. They may be noted on side label, or they may be embossed on the connector or above it. It may have a choice like M,S, CS even. The other side is reserved for some special jumpers settings.

You are sure some power is being applied to this aren't you?

1/3 of highway deaths are caused by drunks. The rest are by people who can't drive any better than a drunk.

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September 29, 2011 at 19:55:40
Yes, the power works and Windows lists the dock as a disk station, but it lists it as empty (ie can't read the HDD).

As you can see from the pictures, the hdd has the master and slave at the far right (, however you don't connect those pins to the dock ( Is it still relevant to set a jumper? Sorry for my neewbness :)

How do you set the jumper on that specific drive, if relevant?

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September 29, 2011 at 19:56:33
Also, is the jumper always a physical setting / installation? Thanks

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September 29, 2011 at 23:55:38
If you look at the label on the picture you posted there's a diagram labelled 'jumpers' showing the pin connections. This refers to the 4 pins on their own to the right of the main bank of pins, & no jumper means it's set as master. You still need to borrow another, working, drive to plug in and see if that is recognised before you can go much further.

"I've always been mad, I know I've been mad, like the most of us..." Pink Floyd

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September 30, 2011 at 01:20:28
Yeah, was hoping there'd be a simpler solution, don't know where I'd get one without paying for something I'd never use.

Thanks for all your help though :)

Quick question; is it supposed to be set to master?

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September 30, 2011 at 04:30:55
I think your problem is the type of formatting used on the drive. That said, you do need to verify the docking station is working. If the docking station engages the jumper pins then obviously you need to leave them all empty and allow the docking station to determine how it wants the drive set.

If you don't have access to another hard drive then the next best thing would be to try the laptop drive in the docking station on a different computer.

I provided a link at the bottom of response #2.

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September 30, 2011 at 16:41:14
OtheHill said:
'If you don't have access to another hard drive then the next best thing would be to try the laptop drive in the docking station on a different computer.'
The OP said:
'For the record, I am running Windows 7 Home Edition on a new Dell XPS (also tried on brand new inspiron), '

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September 30, 2011 at 18:43:52

I'm assuming the disk would have been preformatted by Asus as the disk is taken from a 6yrs old Asus computer which came pre-installed with Windows XP. Is there any way to work around this that would allow me to keep the data?

And I still don't understand the part the jumper would play as long as those pins are never inserted into the dock? If someone could explain why this is relevant, I would be grateful :)

@XpUser4Real, thank you for reiterating :)

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September 30, 2011 at 19:05:46
ty marihun,
as far as I know from the 2 docks I use, the jumper settings have nothing to do with the transfer of files.

Can you hear the drive whirling when you have it in the caddy and plugged into another computer....or is it getting warm?

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September 30, 2011 at 20:33:21
I have been following TWO threads here with hard drive issues. The other thread stated the drive is visible in Disk management but shows the full capacity is a available (non used). I inadvertently posted the comment about the format in this thread. If interested a link to the other thread at the bottom of this post.

Going back over your first post I realize the docking station is being seen by Windows but not any hard drive. Googling for that particular unit I found reference to a slide in the socket that may need to be moved for some IDE hard drives. The references do not mention if that is with 3.5" or 2.5" IDE drives. The unit should have come with a user guide that can further explain that feature.

It doesn't appear that your laptop drive is properly connected, or is not functioning right. Above in #8 John covers the issue of the jumper settings. Depending on the unit the drive must be jumpered a certain way. The purpose of the jumpers is so two drives can share one controller when used internally on a desktop. Some laptops came with TWO hard drives so the 2.5' models also needed the jumpers so the controller could know which one to boot to. If your user manual does not cover this issue then I suggest you just try all three combinations, one by one. The jumper should be a standard jumper used on hard drives, optical drives, motherboards, etc. cannibalize one from hardware lying around.

At this point you have not exhausted your troubleshooting by testing with a jumper in place. Most user comments I found through Google stated the all in 1 worked with all types of drives with the exception of the slider mentioned above in this response. If that drive has sat fro 6 years it may not be spinning up. Are you sure the drive is even functional? Why was it removed from the laptop in the first place? I am wondering if it was damaged while still in the laptop.

I have a device that serves much the same purpose as your docking station without the ability to read flash or card media but able to connect 5.25 optical drives. See the second link below. If you really need to recover the data you may need to try a different interface device if you haven't got another 2.5" IDE drive to test your unit with.

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October 1, 2011 at 00:23:13
The jumper situation with these adapters is irrelevant because they are converting the parallel (IDE) connection to serial (USB) so whether it is master or slave makes no difference. I know because I've just tried it on one of my docks, just out of interest.

As XPUser says, when you plug it into the dock and turn the power on do you hear any whirring or feel slight movement?. If you don't then the only way you can test it is by swapping a working drive into the dock to see if that powers up. If it does then your original drive is faulty, if it doesn't then the dock is faulty - simple as that. If the drive isn't powering up then nothing will recognise it so you are wasting your time if that point hasn't been established.

"I've always been mad, I know I've been mad, like the most of us..." Pink Floyd

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October 1, 2011 at 08:09:54

While you may have tested your docking station I have personal experience with enclosures, which are basically the same thing, where jumper position did make a difference. There is no harm in marihun trying to place jumpers. Other than that, I agree with your assessment. Especially about the drive powering up. I mentioned a power slider above. That might be an issue.


This may be a dumb question, but are you connecting the AC power to the docking station?

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October 1, 2011 at 10:59:28
hmmmm...I kind've remember that the docks don't recognize a certain brand of HD....not sure if it was Maxtor or Seagate.
Maybe the above link will shed some light on the problem

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October 1, 2011 at 19:49:49
@XpUser4Real / Johnr

Thanks. This might be one of the most obvious ones, I'm sorry it didn't strike me earlier, quite new at troubleshooting hardware. It actually doesn't swirl, so I guess that means I need to test the harddisk in different dock / cabinet and / or test another disk in the dock to determine which one is faulty. Presuming that the swirl should always be present if the disk is working properly / connected properly?

Although the harddisk was removed from original computer because the power supply stopped working (the battery slowly went flat and it wouldn't charge), so it has been working properly all along. It seems unlikely that the drive would suddenly stop working (I only took it out a week ago). Guess that leaves me with the dock.


Thank you for your long response. As you can see from my above response to XpUser4Real and Johnr, I guess jumpers aren't relevant in this round. I'd still really like to understand this aspect of it though, for future troubleshooting / round 2 if the next dock doesn't read it either.

I have never worked with jumpers before, but I do understand their purpose now - thank you for the detailed explanation. This might sound like a dumb question to you tech heroes, but do I have to purchase a physical jumper? From what I've read online, it is a small piece of plastic? ( Or in this case, if setting slave (, 2 pieces of plastic? Does the plastic have any function other than 'blocking' those pins? Because if it's only 'blocking' them, is it relevant as those pins are never in contact with the dock?

FYI I have ordered an external cabinett for the drive to check if it'll read / swirl in another unit, and I will keep you posted once it arrives. Thank you so much for your time everyone, very much appreciated! :-)

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October 1, 2011 at 23:10:40
If you can change your order I recommended a more versatile solution in #14 above. I am linking it again below. An enclosure can only be used with one type and size of drive. The adapter linked below can be used with ANY 5.25", 3.5", or 2.5" hard or optical drive.

Jumpers are metallic electrical connectors that usually have a plastic cover on them to make it easier to grab hold of. In most cases they are designed to connect two adjacent pins to complete a circuit. The second link below shows a hard drive with a jumper installed. Simply click on either of the links below to display them.

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October 16, 2011 at 17:58:31
Hi guys!

Just thought I'd let you know it worked and swirled immidiately in a basic IDE 2.5 hdd enclosure I bought on ebay for $8. Since it never swirled in the other one, I have to conclude it was actually faulty.

Thank you so much for taking your time to help me through this, really appreciated! I also hope this post will help others in the same position. A lot of good tips in this post.

In retrospect, first thing to do is listen to the disk. If it doesn't swirl at all (you will hear it), it most likely means that a. your hdd is not working or b. the dock is faulty.

Thanks again! :-)

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