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Hard Drive not detected when loading Windows XP


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#1 Crash and Fix

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Posted 18 March 2010 - 03:25 AM

Okay, I just spent the last couple of hours trying to handle the problem myself, but it looks like I have to reach out and hope that somebody can help. Moving right along; my roommates laptop decided to stop working all together; it would bring her as far as the desktop after she logged in, but it would not display any of the desktop shortcuts or the start menu bar at the bottom of the screen (sorry if I am being too descriptive). After several restarts, I broke down and began to reinstall the Operating System using the disc that she had with her laptop. I don't really know for sure if it will work considering it is a burned copy of Windows XP Pro SP3 and there is no key for it.
Moving right along once again, I was able to run the XP install up until it reached the startup for XP, it then restarted and ran through the installation like it was going to do it again, but this time it stopped and said it could not detect the hard drive. I had to restart the computer and checked the BIOS, and lo and behold, it is not detecting a hard drive. She does not have any of the driver or recovery discs for her laptop, and the discs I have do not work (I received a message indicating that the discs were specific to the type of computer). When I attempt a repair of Windows XP, I receive the same message that the hard drive is not being detected.
I checked the hard drive to see if it was securely in place, which it was, with all four screws holding it in the slot. Once I checked that, I ran through the motions as stated above, but ran into the familiar brick wall of no hard drive. If anybody can offer me a little bit of advice or instructions, or pretty much call me a dumb ass if I am missing something obvious, please feel free to drop me a line.

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#2 Ken-in-West-Seattle

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Posted 18 March 2010 - 08:01 AM

brand and model of the laptop

Newer oem laptops with sata drives often have the sata driver pre-installed. Older versions of xp oem and generic or retail probably don't.

Give us the serial number and model (hp) or service tag (Dell) or whatever is on the sticker that looks like (insert brand) support reference numbers and we can figure it out.

Are the docs, music and email backed up?

If the bios doesn't see the drive there is a good chance it is dead.

A sata drive can be hooked up to any computer with a sata port open on it. An Ide drive needs an adapter to mount it as a slave for testing on another system.
http://www.laptoprepair101.com/laptop/2006...sktop-computer/

Edited by Ken-in-West-Seattle, 18 March 2010 - 08:04 AM.


#3 Crash and Fix

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Posted 18 March 2010 - 03:27 PM

Ah, yes. I probably should have gone more into detail, lol. Alright, down to business. The offending piece of equipment is a Dell Inspiron 2100.

Model No. PP10S

Reference No. 04557

IC Class No. B ICES-003

Dell LBL P/N H8902 A02

That's off of the data plate with the brand logo.

Anyway, nothing has been backed up, but nothing is really irreplaceable. A lot of files on the laptop can also be found on the desktop that I am using. If there is any other information that you need, feel free to speak up.

#4 Ken-in-West-Seattle

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Posted 18 March 2010 - 06:07 PM

well, unless it has been replaced since it came out, your drive is a 9 year old Hitachi DK23DA series ide

The bios will limit the size of drive you can replace it with to probably 120g or less and maybe a lot less. The biggest it shipped with was a 40g .

no recovery partition and possibly no diagnostic partition.

The good news is, if you paid 1800.00 for it new in 2002 you got your monies worth out of it and can buy a new one 20 times more powerful for about 400.00 today. You can find one 10 times more powerful on craigslist for about 150.00.

It's sturdy. I have a latitude the same age that got retired and is being parted out just because the removable parts and bay batteries still fit some of the 2004 p4 models.

My Dell 3000 from 1998 still boots whenever I find it in the pile...


Do you want to fix it ? or just see if the data is recoverable...

#5 Crash and Fix

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Posted 18 March 2010 - 07:06 PM

Well, for the time being, fixing it would be wonderful. Given the fact that we are on a very limited income, that is about the one option that I can think of. As sad as it may be, even the 150 range is still out of reach with the bills and utilities that we pay for. Thanks for the glimpse of light, though, it does help out a bit. So any further details would be great.

#6 Ken-in-West-Seattle

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Posted 19 March 2010 - 12:09 PM

Well the next move should cover both options.

http://www.google.com/products/catalog?hl=...ed=0CC0Q8gIwAw#

This list shows a variety of places where you can get an adapter to test the drive in another pc with an ide ribbon cable.
The range from 4.00 to 10.00 and if you have a radio shack nearby, they either have one or can order it and save you the shipping cost.

Or you may be able to borrow one from a locql geek or indy computer store. If you call around someone may be willing to test it for free.

If the drive is recognized and readable it may indicate you have other hardware problems. On laptops this is usually bad since 90% of the functions are on the same mainboard.

Alternately, you can just boot from a linux live cd and see if it can see a drive. If the bios doesn't see it then it is unlikely but if the linux live cd works and detects the rest of your hardware, then replacing the drive should fix it.

http://www.livecdlist.com/
As old as the hardware is, you might need one of the smaller distributions. Ubuntu 8.04 works better on old hardware than the current 9.10 does but it still might need more memory than you have.

What city are you near? I have a drawer full of small laptop drives and someone near you on craigslist or a local forum might give you one or sell one cheap.




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