Want to slave hard drives

By lostviking ยท 9 replies
Apr 19, 2009
  1. my western digital wd1600 160gb hard drive suffered two blue screen errors and wouldn't reboot the second time so i replaced it. my new drive is a seagate barracuda 500gb. these are both serial ata drives and i would like to slave the old one to the new one to extract data and then wipe it clean and use it as an extra drive storage. does anyone know specifically which cable i need to do this? i have a dell xps400 and it has a slot for a second drive plus a cable that plugs into the second hard drive but the drive doesn't show up any where. there must be a cable that connect the two drives in order for this to work, right?
  2. Matthew

    Matthew TechSpot Staff Posts: 5,332   +101

    The SATA interface doesn't use master/slave principles, and no, you don't attach the drives to one another directly.

    Attach your new drive to the first SATA port on your motherboard, and the old drive to the second port. I assume you've got an OS on your new drive, boot it up and you should have access to your old drive (assuming it isn't totally dead).
  3. lostviking

    lostviking TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 23

    I plugged number two in and did a restart(i'm running vista) but didn't see the drive listed in my computer, not even in device manager so I don't know if it's dead or not. suggestions?
  4. Matthew

    Matthew TechSpot Staff Posts: 5,332   +101

    I hope you're tinkering inside your PC with the power off.

    Eh, make sure the power/data cables on the secondary drive are attached properly and take a look in the BIOS to see if it's there. If not, it's likely dead.
  5. lostviking

    lostviking TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 23

    Good call on the power. A friend had a portable hard drive device and I put mine in and connected via USB and extracted data, so the drive is good as far as I can tell. I need to finish pulling the things I want to keep and then plan on wiping it clean and using it as a secondary drive. Do you know if I need to use the same OS on the secondary? I have a few old games I like that don't run on anything newer then ME and I was hoing to set things up that way. Thanks for helping me..
  6. Matthew

    Matthew TechSpot Staff Posts: 5,332   +101

    You can almost definitely run the games without installing Windows ME or earlier on your old hard drive, through the use of VMware etc. That would be a much more logical solution to your problem.

    To use your old HDD strictly as a data drive, you'll just need to format it, no OS is needed.

    If you're somehow dead set on installing Windows ME or earlier on the old drive, you might need to resort to using GRUB as a boot loader, as I'm unsure if Vista's will support pre-NT OS's.

    If you'd rather dodge messing around with GRUB and don't really care about a software prompt (which a mutual bootloader would provide), you can just install the older OS on your separate HDD and then manually boot off of it.

    You're welcome on the help. Good luck.
  7. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,973   +2,527

    Run in Compatibility Mode For..........

    "Properties" allows you to run a program in a compatibility mode for older OSes. You can right click right on the program's icon, choose "properties" from the context menu, and then click on the "compatibility" tab, tick the "run as" box, and then pick whatever OS strikes your fancy.

    I'm speaking here of XP, but the procedure should be similar for Vista. (I hope, I hope, Ihope).
  8. Matthew

    Matthew TechSpot Staff Posts: 5,332   +101

    Another, probably more viable solution to installing an ancient OS on your secondary HDD. :)
  9. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,973   +2,527

    Wow did I misread that post Matthew, sorry.
  10. Matthew

    Matthew TechSpot Staff Posts: 5,332   +101

    Haha, no problem. I wish I had a dime for every time I've misread something and replied :).
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