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IBM ThinkCentre PATA to SATA?

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#1 Capn Easy

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 05:49 PM

A recent brush with nasty malware got me thinking about my hard disc replacement options. The issue has been solved (thanks to the folks here!), but I'm still thinking.

I have an IBM ThinkCentre A50p 8195-26U, circa 2002, running Windows XP Home Edition. About two years ago I did a major upgrade: I cloned the 80 GB drive to a 500 GB drive and swapped them out, added RAM, swapped out both optical drives for DVD-RWs, installed a USB 2.0/Firewire board and put a hub in the spare floppy bay, plus some other minor tweaks.

The hard disc that came with the computer was EIDE (also known as PATA), and that's what I replaced it with. But EIDE drives are getting harder to find, at least at reasonable prices. Most places are pushing SATA drives -- which are also available in larger capacities than the EIDE drives. If I upgrade the drive again it would be very convenient if I could use a SATA drive.

I noticed in the documentation for my computer (not much more than an illustration of the motherboard with the major parts labeled) that there was a connection for a SATA cable. I also verified that the connector was there when I had the case open.

Does anyone know what I would need to do to install a SATA drive to replace my existing EIDE drive? (Besides clone the content and get a cable.) Would I have to change anything in the BIOS, or would the computer recognize the new drive when it boots up?

I know this is a pretty specialized question, but I figured this might be the right crowd.

Thanks in advance!

Edited by Capn Easy, 31 December 2008 - 05:50 PM.

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#2 hamluis



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Posted 31 December 2008 - 06:17 PM

The only stumbling block that I can foresee possible...would be the drivers necessary for XP to recognize a SATA drive.

In theory, those drivers should load with all the other chipset drivers. But, since you did not have a SATA drive attached when you installed XP, those drivers might be missing.

I've not tried it, although I have cloned a partition onto a larger drive successfully...with no problems.

When the system boots, the BIOS will recognize the drive...it's XP that may not.

In addition to SATA cable to motherboard, you also need a PSU with SATA connectors...or the converter clips which allow for connection to PSUs without SATA leads.


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