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One Computer Two Hard Drives


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#1 wanna-B-wiz

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 05:55 PM

I have to hard drives ... one for work and one is for personal use ... My computer tower has two slots for hard drives .. The power cable has two ports to be able to plug two drives at once and I have to sata cables that I are connected to the mother board and to which ever drive I will use at the momment ... so basicly i have to unplug from one drive to the other in order to use them.

How can I leave them both plugged and have some kind of prompt (when i turn on the computer) that will ask me which drive I will use ???

Edited by boopme, 18 September 2012 - 07:23 PM.


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#2 dc3

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 08:11 PM

It would help to know the make and model of this computer.

If I understand what you have described it sounds like your data cable is an IDE cable, some refer to this as a ribbon cable, to confirm this you can use the link below to view an IDE cable. If this is the case the connector at the end of the cable that connects to the hdds is the master, and the middle connector is the slave. The computer which is the one with the operating system should be connected to the master connector and the jumper on the rear of the hdd should be in the master location. There should be a diagram on the hdd showing the different pin locations. The other hdd should be connected to the middle connector as a slave drive and the jumper should be set for that application.

Parallel ATA - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This whole thing changes when you mention SATA cable in conjunction with what you previously described, so we need to know if the cable that is connecting the hdds is a IDE or SATA.

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#3 Artrooks

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 10:47 AM

Hi wanna-B-wiz,

I'm not sure if this is what you are thinking of:

Have a look at this: http://www.cooldrives.com/4posaiisw3ba.html

  • The first is a "four" port switch, but if you arrow down, there is a cheaper, 2 port switch.
  • You choose which hard drive to boot from at startup. Switching to the other hard drive would require a complete shutdown, switch change, and restart.
Caveate: This would require Windows to be installed on each hard drive as each would be booted separately. Legally, this may require two separate Windows OS licenses.

Regards,
Brooks



 


#4 jhayz

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 11:33 AM

Do you intend to use the drives as system or just data drives? Or one system and one data drive?

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#5 wanna-B-wiz

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 12:36 PM

Hi wanna-B-wiz,

I'm not sure if this is what you are thinking of:

Have a look at this: http://www.cooldrives.com/4posaiisw3ba.html

  • The first is a "four" port switch, but if you arrow down, there is a cheaper, 2 port switch.
  • You choose which hard drive to boot from at startup. Switching to the other hard drive would require a complete shutdown, switch change, and restart.
Caveate: This would require Windows to be installed on each hard drive as each would be booted separately. Legally, this may require two separate Windows OS licenses.


the idea is the write one but I am hoping that the computer has the capability to do it with out having to buy anything extra

Do you intend to use the drives as system or just data drives? Or one system and one data drive?


Each drive will have its own operating system .. one for personal use and the other one is for work.

#6 wanna-B-wiz

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 12:51 PM

It would help to know the make and model of this computer.

If I understand what you have described it sounds like your data cable is an IDE cable, some refer to this as a ribbon cable, to confirm this you can use the link below to view an IDE cable. If this is the case the connector at the end of the cable that connects to the hdds is the master, and the middle connector is the slave. The computer which is the one with the operating system should be connected to the master connector and the jumper on the rear of the hdd should be in the master location. There should be a diagram on the hdd showing the different pin locations. The other hdd should be connected to the middle connector as a slave drive and the jumper should be set for that application.

Parallel ATA - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This whole thing changes when you mention SATA cable in conjunction with what you previously described, so we need to know if the cable that is connecting the hdds is a IDE or SATA.


It is defenitley not a ribbon ... The following links will lead you images that will illustrate what I use:

* Hardrive and how it is plugged.
* SATA Cable (I have two cables) and the motherboard slot (it has two slots)in which it connects to.
* The Power Cable with double pluggs (to plugg two hard drives)
* My Computer Specs
* Illustration that will show that My Tower has two slots to insert hard drives (Scroll down to where it says add a second hard drive).

Basicly my computer is capable of plugging two drives at the same time but I do not know how to make the switch from one drive to the other.

#7 Artrooks

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 01:13 PM

Each drive will have its own operating system .. one for personal use and the other one is for work.


BIOS will only allow one hard drive to be set as a boot drive. If you have two drives attached, each with their own operating system, you would have to access BIOS, change the drive you wish to boot from Drive A to Drive B and vice versa, save changes, then restart. Possible, but not very practical, but neither is plugging one drive at at time into the motherboard. I don't believe that there is a simple, no cost solution.

Others may have different ideas.

Regards,
Brooks



 


#8 hamluis

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 01:35 PM

I believe that you could use a 3d-party boot manager...which detects both drives as bootable/active. Unfortunately, I can't tell you any more than that, since I've never ventured into the world of such tools, other than EasyBCD (which requires at least O/S using the Vista/Win 7 bootloader).

A partition/drive with an O/S installed...can be set to active/bootable status...by using various tools. Since you have a partition with an O/S on each drive, you might try the procedure spelled out by MS.

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-vista/Mark-a-partition-as-active

Louis

#9 wanna-B-wiz

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 05:33 PM

Each drive will have its own operating system .. one for personal use and the other one is for work.


BIOS will only allow one hard drive to be set as a boot drive. If you have two drives attached, each with their own operating system, you would have to access BIOS, change the drive you wish to boot from Drive A to Drive B and vice versa, save changes, then restart. Possible, but not very practical, but neither is plugging one drive at at time into the motherboard. I don't believe that there is a simple, no cost solution.

Others may have different ideas.


ok .. I thought that maybe there was a way to have both drives plugged at the same time and create BIOS setup that will prompt a question asking which drive will I currently use.

Could it be that there are two hard drive slots avaible to have the option to create a partition ??

The reason I ask is because the mother board has two slots and the power cable has two plugs at the end that plugs to the hard drive.

#10 caperjac

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 06:29 PM

quote---The reason I ask is because the mother board has two slots and the power cable has two plugs at the end that plugs to the hard drive

correct basically so you could slave another drive for storage .
this is i think your best option to partition a large drive and install windows on both partitions , and you will be able to choose what one you want to use on bootup, setting the one use the most to be the one first in the list . have a laptop ,with the hdd partitioned and i have win7 on one and win8 on the other,and it works just fine and they are independent of one another .

Edited by caperjac, 19 September 2012 - 06:33 PM.

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#11 wanna-B-wiz

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 06:52 PM

quote---The reason I ask is because the mother board has two slots and the power cable has two plugs at the end that plugs to the hard drive

this is i think your best option to partition a large drive and install windows on both partitions ,


Correct me if I am wrong .. but I thought when a drive was partitioned that it acted only as disk space (like and external drive which does not require an OS) .. by what you are saying it seems like there is a way to have both drive act independently but one would be primary.

#12 wanna-B-wiz

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 07:08 PM

This is a picture of how the my two drives are plugged.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/30481343@N07/8004634790/

This is a picture of how the two SATA cables are plugged.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/30481343@N07/8004634956/

#13 caperjac

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 05:47 AM


quote---The reason I ask is because the mother board has two slots and the power cable has two plugs at the end that plugs to the hard drive

this is i think your best option to partition a large drive and install windows on both partitions ,


Correct me if I am wrong .. but I thought when a drive was partitioned that it acted only as disk space (like and external drive which does not require an OS) .. by what you are saying it seems like there is a way to have both drive act independently but one would be primary.


they both show as primary in disk manager .and im using win7 and win8 ,so with winxp you will have to use a 3rd party bootmanager

here is a link to another forum about using 2 harddrive

http://www.sevenforums.com/installation-setup/128267-loading-win7-two-separate-hdd-drives-same-computer.html

Edited by caperjac, 20 September 2012 - 06:09 AM.

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#14 wanna-B-wiz

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Posted 22 September 2012 - 07:34 PM

I am not looking to purchase a new OS .. so i guess I will be stuck doing it the way i have been doing it .. LOL .. thank you for your help.

#15 Baltboy

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 07:04 AM

You never said what oorating systems you are using which makes a bib difference. The choice of which OS to boot from is a function of the boot loader not the BIOS. Setup is dependent on which OS's you are using. If you are using xp and 7 then XP must be installed first. The windows 7 installed will recognize and create a dual boot situation. For windows and linux install windows first and thenbuse the linux loader to create the dual boot menu.
Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.
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