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Hard Drive Question...

By Internetzilla
Jan 18, 2007
Topic Status:
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  1. Thanks ahead of a time for any help.

    I am sorta stumped as to what I can do. Alright, here we go. I bought a brand new Dell Dimension E521. I love it. But I need my family photos, ect, from my old Emachine W2888.

    So I went about to slave the old drive in my dell and just burn the files that I need. Only one problem, they use completely different cables. The Emachine uses the ribbon cable, and the dell uses some smaller cable.

    The Emachine does not have a plug for the cable the Dell uses. Is there some kind of adapter out there? Or what our my options here. I just need some way to retrieve the files of the hold hard drive.

    Thanks for any help.
  2. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,813   +159

    Your Dell is probably using a smaller SATA cable on a SATA Hard Drive. See if the Dell motherboard has a wide IDE connector, and connect the Emachines Hard Drive to it. After you find this out and connect the drives, we can continue
  3. Internetzilla

    Internetzilla TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 24


    The wide IDE cable, ribbon cable, was smaller than the one the hard drive from the Emachine uses. Also the only wide IDE cable in the case runs from the mother board to the audio/usb slots on the front of my computer. I did disconnect it and try but again, it was to small. Any other ideas?
  4. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,813   +159

    You're not too familiar with computer hardware are you... IDE cables are not connected to audio/USB slots. If you can't find a flat cable the size of the Emachines connector, or the Dell hard drive cable won't fit on the Emachines drive, you'll have to take it in to a computer repair shop for further help
  5. Internetzilla

    Internetzilla TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 24

    Never realized I claimed to be familiar with the hardware. Huh. Maybe I just forgot I did.

    And for the record I am not completely oblivious as to the hardware. I have some experience.

    Anyways, there is only one flat grey cable in the dell that even remotely resembling the cable that went from my hard drive on the emachine. It is plugged into a slot in the front of the dell case where the usb/audio is held, below the DVD/RW drive.

    And what purpose would there be in taking the system/hard drive to a computer shop. What would they do about it?
  6. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,813   +159

    I didn't say you claimed to be familiar with computer hardware, your postings tell that you are not familiar enough, loud and clear. IDE cables have 80 wires in them. I seriously doubt that the flat cable going to the front panel has 80 wires in it. Those are more like 10 or so. The cable plugged in to the CD R/W is an IDE cable. Look where it plugs into the motherboard. See if there's another place on the motherboard where this CD R/W cable would fit. If you find one, this might be where you can hook the Emachines drive. Use the big flat cable from the Emachines system. This is also an IDE cable. Is the cable going to the Dell's hard drive flat or round with about 8 wires?

    If you took the system to a computer shop, they could have your Emachines hard drive hooked up and data transfered in less than 1/2 an hour... Maybe even in 15 minutes. It is an easy process once the hardware is configured
  7. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 12,525   +300

    Are your CD drives using the IDE (big flat) in your new dell? If not disconnect a cd drive temporarly and plug the hard drive in there.
  8. daniel161

    daniel161 TS Rookie Posts: 94

  9. Internetzilla

    Internetzilla TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 24

    Pictures. Hope they can help

    OKay here are the pictures I hope they can help you help me. let me know thanks.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
  10. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,813   +159

    It looks like you have an IDE Controller connector just below the power supply connector on the motherboard. It is black in color, and it is keyed. Keyed means that the Emachines hard drive cable will plug into this connector only one way. Be careful not to bend any pins. If the Emachines hard drive cable doesn't fit here, you will have to take the system to a computer shop, to have a SATA to IDE adapter installed. It does look like both the Dell hard drive and CDROM are SATA
  11. Internetzilla

    Internetzilla TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 24

    Okay, on the picture is the keyed A or B? And what you saying is to take the IDE cable out of the emachine plug it into the hard drive and then plug it into the keyed?

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,813   +159

    "A" looks like a floppy drive connector. "B" is where you will plug in the Emachines flat hard drive cable, the connect then other end to the hard drive. There should be a 4-wire power connector somewhere in the Dell that will fit on the Emachines hard drive too. The SATA power connectors are different. Once you get the Emachines hard drive connected in the Dell, boot the Dell and see if you can "see" the Emachines drive in the Dells My Computer. If you can see it, you will be able to transfer files from it to the Dell hard drive. If you can't see the Emachines hard drive, we will have to continue here
  13. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 8,428   +217

    To me, "B" looks to be the PCI-E x16 graphics card slot.
  14. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,813   +159

    I think you're right mailpup,
    the IDE connector looks like it is right underneath the ATX power connector
  15. Internetzilla

    Internetzilla TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 24

    I broke it open it again. Found the 4 prong cable that fit into the emachine drive. I turned it on but I can't get the computer to read the drive.

    What now? Thanks for your help glad something is working.

    DesI broke it open it again. Found the 4 prong cable that fit into the emachine drive. I turned it on but I can't get the computer to read the drive.

    What now? Thanks for your help glad something is working.
  16. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,813   +159

    The 4-prong connector is the power connector. You have to have the IDE cable connected too, inorder to have it completely connected
  17. Internetzilla

    Internetzilla TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 24

    Well the IDE connectors didn't fit anywhere. So what I need is a IDE to SATA Adapter correct? Is that something I can find locally or is NewEgg my best bet?
  18. Internetzilla

    Internetzilla TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 24

    How do you tell which kind of IDE cable you have, do you count amount of plugs and prongs or how wide the cable is or....?

    Would a USB to IDE be a better way to go?
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