No os on laptop hdd

Toshiba Portege 3440ct piii 500mhz 64mb...
October 1, 2009 at 18:43:49
Specs: N/A, 64mb

I have a fairly old toshiba that came without an
os, and i have tried to install windows 98,
2000, xp, ubuntu and puppy linux vers 1 and
4.3 via cd and all of them crashed during
isntallation because the hdd wasnt ready or
something. anyhway i took out my laptop hdd
and connected it to my desktop via usb
enclosure. i installed DOS 7.10 but instead of booting it comes up with the error "Disk I/O error replace disk and press any button"

so if anyone would know what might be the
problem or can think of another way of getting
an os on my computer it would be muchly
appreciated. (laptop has usb floppy drive but i
dont know if it would boot because it dosent
have that option in BIOS, but it does have FDD
, what does that mean?

I would prefer a straight forward, detailed step by step guide of what u would do if in this position

thanks, Nick

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October 1, 2009 at 20:22:26
Fron what you have described it sounds like the drive might have failed. If you know what brand of hard drive it is try using the manufacture's drive software to see if it is working properly. Seagates software is Seatools or Maxblast and Western Digital has software for Windows or DOS.

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October 1, 2009 at 21:18:29
In my experience you can't run hard drive manufacturer's diagnostics on a drive when it's in an external drive enclosure and connected by a USB connection.

You have to either

- install it in the laptop again in order to test it

- or - if you're not sure whether there's something wrong with the laptop - your drive is probably IDE - you can buy an inexpensive laptop IDE (2.5") to desktop IDE (3.5") adapter, and connect it to a desktop computer's IDE data cable, and test the drive.
The drive has 4 pins (2 pairs of pins) for setting it to master or slave - it's set to cable select when no jumpers are installed - the jumpers are installed vertically.
If you install it on a data cable that has another drive connected to it, both drives must be set to cable select, or one must be set to master, the other to slave.
Some hard drives, e.g. many Western Digital models, have two ways they can be set to Master - e.g. Master, single, or Master, with slave - the latter setting should be used when two drives are on the same cable.

Check your hard drive with the manufacturer's diagnostics.
See the latter part of response 1 in this:

(thanks to Dan Penny for this link:)
Hard Drive Diagnostics Tools and Utilities

If you don't have a floppy drive, you can get a CD image diagnostic utility from most hard drive manufacturer's web sites, but obviously you would need to make a burned CD, preferably a CD-R for best compatibilty, on another computer if you need to.

If the hard drive itself tests okay, any data problems found can be fixed, one way or another.

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October 1, 2009 at 22:25:12
What was the error message?


Practice makes perfect but only if you practice perfectly!

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