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My new 500Gb internal "drive not found" problem installing XP on it.


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#1 Lee42

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Posted 31 March 2010 - 02:29 AM

My computer is a Gateway eMachine model T5048 with Windows XP Media Center Edition.

I installed a new internal WD 500Gb EIDE hard drive to replace the original 160Gb that came with my eMachine. I used the original Recovery Disk to
install XP on the new drive. The install went fine until the very end, after it completed, when a small error window popped up telling me
"Drive Not Found!" with an OK button to click on. (I took a picture which can be seen at http://img20.imageshack.us/img20/4725/img7419dh.jpg ).
How can it copy the whole OS onto the drive, and then tell me Drive not found? Shouldn't it have told me that at the very beginning??

So after I clicked the OK button, the next window that popped up was saying something about MBRInst and showed options. (Here is a pic of that
screen http://img145.imageshack.us/img145/3428/img7420w.jpg ) That made no sense...maybe somebody could explain that to me?

When I rebooted, all I got was a black screen with a blinking cursor in the top left corner of the screen. I had to do a forced shut-down.
I tried three times to install Windows that evening and kept getting the same Drive not found error at the end. I finally gave up and reconnected the
original 160Gb drive to get up and running again. And btw, I plan to put the old drive back in as a slave drive after I get Windows installed on the new
master drive.

I recall seeing something about the BIOS on older systems (mine is 3-1/2 years old) not recognizing any hard drive larger than a certain size.
If that's true with my T5048, does anyone know the largest sized hard drive that my system will recognize? Can my BIOS be updated to fix this?
I tried emailing eMachine's support about the BIOS but they didn't help me and said I had to pay for it...at ridiculous $$$ prices...I think not!

I might have to partition the new drive. But the problem is, I have no clue whatsoever on how to partition a drive! I've never done it before.
If I need to do this, could I please have the step-by-step instructions on how to do that?

I'd be ever so grateful for any and all help to get this new drive to work. Thank you so much!

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#2 MrBruce1959

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Posted 31 March 2010 - 10:48 AM

Have you considered using a cloning program, one that clones one hard drive to the other?

The error you're getting is saying there is a problem with your Master Boot Record

If you have Windows XP installed as FAT 32 it has limitations of only using 139 GB effectively of a hard drive size.

Installed as NTFS has less drive size limitations and should see the whole 500 GB drive.

From what you're telling me you had a 160 GB drive originally installed, if your primary partition size was that full 160 GB, then your BIOS has no restrictions and should see the whole drive.

The utility you showed in your post has an option to repair the MBR, try using that option and see if it fixes the MBR type: mbrinst /activate 1
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#3 Lee42

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Posted 01 April 2010 - 12:54 AM

Have you considered using a cloning program, one that clones one hard drive to the other?

Thank you MrBruce1959 for your reply. I have considered it but I wont do it because my 160 drive is so bloated with junk. My system has become sluggish so it's time for a fresh Windows install on a new drive to get my puter running fast again. If I cloned, I'd have the same sluggish issues all over again.

Installed as NTFS has less drive size limitations and should see the whole 500 GB drive.

It is NTFS. I dropped to DOS and did a chkdsk to make sure. I would think it'd see the whole drive too.

The utility you showed in your post has an option to repair the MBR, try using that option and see if it fixes the MBR type: mbrinst /activate 1

Why would that window pop up telling me to repair my Master Boot Record when this is a brand new drive? The command you said to type (mbrinst /activate 1) I don't understand. Just for kicks, I dropped to DOS, typed mbrinst /? <enter> (hoping to see a list of options similar to the error window I got before), but got no result back....and then in Windows, I typed mbrinst in the Start > Run box but again got no results. So when and from where do I type that command? What does the "/activate 1" parameter do? Thanx again for your help.

#4 hamluis

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Posted 01 April 2010 - 11:19 AM

I've had a couple of eMachines systems...I didn't know that they provide recovery/restore CDs. My experience is that such have to be made by the owner at first use.

Generally, a restore/recovery disk may also be dependent upon the existence of a support partition on the system hard drive. See http://www.ehow.com/how_2337743_do-emachin...-recovery-.html.

Attempting to restore XP to a different hard drive, without this support partition...using the recovery/restore CD...will probably be unsuccessful, IMO.

FWIW: http://www.neowin.net/forum/topic/353536-e...new-hard-drive/

Louis

My suggestion...clone the entire old drive to new drive...then do the restore/recovery. That will accomplish your stated aims, I believe.

Edited by hamluis, 01 April 2010 - 11:21 AM.


#5 Lee42

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Posted 03 April 2010 - 02:16 AM

I've had a couple of eMachines systems...I didn't know that they provide recovery/restore CDs. My experience is that such have to be made by the owner at first use.

Generally, a restore/recovery disk may also be dependent upon the existence of a support partition on the system hard drive. See http://www.ehow.com/how_2337743_do-emachin...-recovery-.html.

Attempting to restore XP to a different hard drive, without this support partition...using the recovery/restore CD...will probably be unsuccessful, IMO.

Hi Louis, Thanx for your reply. That was a really informative article at ehow.com and I learned a few things from it. This computer I bought brand new at the Best Buy store (3-1/2 years ago) came with a Recovery Disk. When you mention the disk being dependent of an existing "support partition" on the system drive. What exactly does that mean....an existing support partition?? I've never partitioned a drive before in my life so I don't know how that process goes from start to finish so I'm at a loss there..:thumbsup:


FWIW: [/quotehttp://www.neowin.net/forum/topic/353536-e...new-hard-drive/

Louis

My suggestion...clone the entire old drive to new drive...then do the restore/recovery. That will accomplish your stated aims, I believe.

I'm glad you gave me that link....that thread has some great info about eMachines and using the Recovery Disk on a new drive. And that's a really great idea to clone the old drive to the new one, then do the recovery. I might just try that....that is when I figure out how to clone a hard drive as I've never done that before.

The thing is though, I'm probably going to go tomorrow to Best Buy and exchange this drive out for another one and see if I have the same problem with the replacement drive. I heard from a Geek Squad friend of mine that it's possible that these drives have a defective master boot record from the start. We'll soon see, and I'll post to let you know how it went. Thanx again!

#6 DaChew

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Posted 03 April 2010 - 07:16 AM

I wonder if the problem was the new drive was not initialized.

If I use another setup/computer to partition and format a drive then use an xp disk to load the OS but don't initialize the drive in disk management I will get a similar error of drive not found.
Chewy

No. Try not. Do... or do not. There is no try.

#7 hamluis

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Posted 03 April 2010 - 09:53 AM

I also tend to shy away from formatting a partition first, using another system, and then trying to install XP from the CD. My conclusion was that the XP disk likes to do it all, since it's built that way...and may have trouble with a pre-formatted/partitioned hard drive.

Louis

#8 Lee42

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Posted 07 April 2010 - 12:38 AM

I wonder if the problem was the new drive was not initialized.

If I use another setup/computer to partition and format a drive then use an xp disk to load the OS but don't initialize the drive in disk management I will get a similar error of drive not found.

Hi Chewy, thanx for your reply. Your saying the drive might not have been initialized has made me ask...what exactly does that mean? I always thought that new hard drives bought at a retail store (like Best Buy in my case) came all ready to go. Meaning nothing had to be done to them except connect the cable, power, install the OS on them, and go forward from there. Please elaborate and enlighten me...I'm dying to know what you meant by that. Thanx!

#9 Lee42

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Posted 07 April 2010 - 01:20 AM

I also tend to shy away from formatting a partition first, using another system, and then trying to install XP from the CD. My conclusion was that the XP disk likes to do it all, since it's built that way...and may have trouble with a pre-formatted/partitioned hard drive.

Louis

Hi Louis, just thought to drop a line with a quick update. I finally made it to the store and exchanged the old drive for another one. I have yet to connect it and try installing the OS (via recovery disk) but hopefully will do that tomorrow evening. I've just recently learned that since my eMachine computer is only 3-1/2 years old, the BIOS will support a 500Gb hard drive...and that these drives are sold already formatted, then there should be no partitioning or formatting required beforehand. I'm crossing my fingers and hopes this other drive will actually work for me. Will be back in a day or two to let you know how it went. Thanx for your patience!

#10 hamluis

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Posted 07 April 2010 - 08:06 AM

I've not used the eMachines recovery/restore disks at all.

To use such to reinstall the O/S...you will have to follow whatever instructions are provided by eMachines for attempting such.

I don't seem to be able to find documentation for this recovery/restore CD, so I suggest that you contact eMachines/Gateway about your situation or look through the documentation provided for your system.

Louis

#11 Lee42

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 01:34 AM

Well folks, I've hit a brick wall and I don't know what to do. I went back to the store and exchanged the 500Gb hard drive for another identical one. I haven't done anything with it yet though. I want to do it right this time around. I decided this time to call Western Digital's tech-support for help to see if there was anything I needed to do before installing the OS on it using the recovery disk that came with my system.

He says I can't use the recovery disk...saying something about it requires that there already be an OS installed on the drive beforehand. I don't have a full Windows Media Center version on CD...just the recovery disk. Then he suggested using the WD Acronis True Image program to clone the drive. I told him I had a basic idea of what cloning a drive meant but that I'd never done it before and had no clue on how to do it. And then he sent me an email with the link ( http://wdc.custhelp.com/cgi-bin/wdc.cfg/ph...hp?p_faqid=3682 ) to learn how to do it.

I was under the impression that cloning a drive to a new drive would create an exactly identical drive. One that had completely, file for file, created a duplicate hard drive. For example, if my old drive had 98,370 files and 41,312 folders on it, then the cloned drive should have the exact same # of files and folders on it.....right?? From what the guy on the phone told me, that cloning doesn't copy the operating system over to the new drive. Is that really true?? I really need to know this. It's got me frustrated that according to this WD tech-support guy, I have to have a full version of Windows on CD in order to use this new 500Gb drive.

Thing is, I do have a full version of XP Home to install on this drive but I don't want XP Home. But if I do that, could I then use the recovery disk to install my XP Media Center Edition onto it?

What should I do? I don't want to just return this drive and give up, I'm determined to get this thing in my system. Please help me...I'm at my wits end here... :thumbsup:

#12 hamluis

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 10:11 AM

<<What should I do?>>

That's entirely up to you.

MrBruce suggested cloning way back in the game.

The difficulties of trying to install using recovery disks...has been discussed. I personally believe that this is the crux of your situation and that nothing is wrong with any hard drive. You haven't run any diagnostics indicating that either drive has a problem and you have chosen to ignore certain items previously pointed out.

When using a 3d-party cloning program...I've always obtained exact copies of the partition or drive which I have cloned. I've not used Acronis software, so I can't comment on the procedure linked to...others here are familiar with Acronis and I have no reason to doubt the procedures to be employed when using software supplied by WDC for that purpose.

Louis

#13 YHB318

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 01:57 PM

Acronis makes great disc imaging software - it will do everything you need to get a new drive going. I've used the Seagate version for years (different in name only). That step by step on Western Digital's page show's you exactly how to do it.

Sounds like this project is giving you a hard time - that Geek Squad friend of yours might be your best shot. Buy him some beer (unless he's underage! - then again, maybe especially if he's underage!) and it should get done really quick. Good luck!

#14 Lee42

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 04:37 PM

When using a 3d-party cloning program...I've always obtained exact copies of the partition or drive which I have cloned. I've not used Acronis software, so I can't comment on the procedure linked to...others here are familiar with Acronis and I have no reason to doubt the procedures to be employed when using software supplied by WDC for that purpose.

Thank you Louis, you've confirmed that cloning makes an exact copy. I was seriously misinformed by the WD tech-support guy who told me yesterday that Acronis wont copy the operating system over to the new drive. It just didn't sound right and I didn't want to believe him. I can't imagine why he told me that but obviously he didn't know what he was talking about. I can't wait to reply to the email survey they sent me about thier phone service.

You said to me in an earlier post "My suggestion...clone the entire old drive to new drive...then do the restore/recovery. That will accomplish your stated aims, I believe.". I kept that suggestion in mind because I thought it was a great idea so that is exactly what I am going to do next. I didn't do it before because I've never cloned a drive, have no idea how to do it, plus I was afraid that I was going to mess up and lose everything on the source drive. But I'm just gonna cross my fingers, go for it, and hope for the best...wish me luck!

Thanx again Louis, you've been great!

#15 Lee42

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 04:49 PM

Acronis makes great disc imaging software - it will do everything you need to get a new drive going. I've used the Seagate version for years (different in name only). That step by step on Western Digital's page show's you exactly how to do it.

Sounds like this project is giving you a hard time - that Geek Squad friend of yours might be your best shot. Buy him some beer (unless he's underage! - then again, maybe especially if he's underage!) and it should get done really quick. Good luck!

Thanx for your reply YHB318. I appreciate your vote of confidence about Acronis. If my first attempt at cloning a drive doesn't work or if I mess up somehow, then I'm definitely gonna take my system over to my Geek Squad friend with some Jagermeister and get him to do it for me. I'm sure you're right, he probably could get it done real quick. Thanx again.




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