Crashed HDD, now won't boot with ANY replacement SATA drive

By emsguy4you
Sep 24, 2009
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  1. Dell Dimension 8400 (about 3-4 years old). Stock SATA 160gb hard drive crashed (got the blue screen, all the codes, etc.) Took it to a computer place, they also said the HD crashed. I have bought a replacement 250gb SATA HD - attached the two inputs to the back (one thin and ling, one thin and short) and all I get on boot up is a couple of chirps and the screen says "Drive 1 (and 2 and 3) Not Found: Serial ATA, SATA-1" and repeats for drives two and three. The drive is warm, it's being accessed (it's humming), but I've also tried a third 160gb drive, same thing. I even replaced the original drive back in and the same thing - not even the blue screen and error codes any more.

    Went to F2 set up, set to auto detect, all (SATA) drives sets to 'on.'

    I'm computer literate, but not a techy or anything.

    Totally lost now. Please help.

    emsguy4you at aol dot com
  2. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,748   +156

    This is a double post... Why?
  3. raybay

    raybay TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 10,716   +6

    The drive must be setup...
    Go to the website of the hard drive manufacturer and look up how to setup and install that SATA drive.
    The Dell 8400 is a superb machine, but has some troubles with failed Capacitors. However, It appears you just need help on installation of an OEM version of the drive which you purchased instead of a "retail" hard drive.
    Instructions are available on all websites of companies that make drives which will fit the 8400. Only the Tri-Gem brand and the Toshiba brand do not provide instructions.
  4. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,748   +156

    "The drive must be setup"...

    SATA drive setup? The computer had a SATA drive originally. You mean partitioned and formatted?
  5. emsguy4you

    emsguy4you Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    ...because I didn't receive any replies :)
  6. emsguy4you

    emsguy4you Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    The replacement drive is a used one and has been wiped clean. It has to be formatted with a new OS. But the problem is I am not getting that far - the computer won't recognize it at all, as I described.
  7. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,748   +156

    You should have "bumped" the original post, not posted an identical post in the same forum

    "The replacement drive is a used one and has been wiped clean"...

    When you say "wiped clean", if no partition exists, Windows won't see it. Can you partition and format it in another computer? Is the new drive seen by the bios?
  8. Alex Atkin UK

    Alex Atkin UK Newcomer, in training

    This sounds like you bought a SATA II drive and your old PC probably only understands SATA I.

    Look on the back of the HDD, there will be a jumper on it (or somewhere to put one) if its a SATA II drive, probably not if its a SATA I one. You may need to google the drive to find out exactly what settings you need to put it on to limit it to 1.5Gbit mode (SATA I) but once you have done that, your PC should see it.
  9. emsguy4you

    emsguy4you Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Thanks for all the responses. Let me address them one at a time:

    1) You should have "bumped" the original post, not posted an identical post in the same forum

    * I don't know what a bump is or how to do one - sorry.

    2) This sounds like you bought a SATA II drive and your old PC probably only understands SATA I

    * All three drives - the original, and the two replacements, have the same inputs/pins/etc. on the back. Again, the computer is NOT recognizing even the original drive - I get the same messages for all three. If what you state is true, I don't see how it explains it not recognizing the original. Also, when I first (weeks ago) replaced the crashed original with the first replacement, the computer recognized it on boot up. Now it doesn't. It recognizes none of them.

    3) When you say "wiped clean", if no partition exists, Windows won't see it. Can you partition and format it in another computer? Is the new drive seen by the bios?

    * I was able to format the second drive on install (but didn't). Seen by the bios? Again, I can't get passed the initial boot (but i also don't know how to answer 'Is the new drive seen by the bios?'). I think #2 addresses this as well.

    Maybe I'm not speaking the language right, but my computer will not even recognize the original drive, which it always did, even giving me the blue screen and all the error codes on boot up - it will not even do that now. It says the same thing for that drive and the two other ones (see original post).

    Does this clarify things?
  10. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,748   +156

    How many SATA ports are on the motherboard? 2 or 4?
  11. emsguy4you

    emsguy4you Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Not sure if I'm answering this right, but there are two ports that the blue cord can plug onto on the MB. The message I receive though mentions no SATA in drives one through four (SATA-1, SATA-2, etc).

    I did, however, try to plug that cable into the other port and rebotted - nothing changed.

    I didn't think it would, since it was a different position than stock, and nothing has ever moved/been relocated inside the unit.

    Does that answer that?
     
  12. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,748   +156

    "The message I receive though mentions no SATA in drives one through four (SATA-1, SATA-2, etc)"

    This message comes up while the computer is booting? So there are probabably 2-2port SATA connectors. Can you try another SATA cable?
  13. emsguy4you

    emsguy4you Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Yes, comes up while it is booting. Turn on computer, hear some coarse chirps, then the messages come up.

    I don't have an extra parts, and certainly not another SATA cable, but i'll guess I'll have to try and find one. Just seems odd it works one day, now it (cable) has possibly gone bad
  14. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,748   +156

    SATA cables are very hard to break. Does yours have metal clips that you have to press to remove the cable? You haven't changed anything in the bios?
  15. emsguy4you

    emsguy4you Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    No metal clips. No changes made.
  16. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,748   +156

    A replacement SATA cable should come with attached metal clips used for a more secure connection. Are the drives powering up?
  17. emsguy4you

    emsguy4you Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Yes, everything powers up, the HD included
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