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  1. #1
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    Sata Hard Drive undetected

    I have a Sata hard drive with Windows 7 installed, have been working until this morning when I turned my computer on and found a message saying "Disk boot failure, insert system disk and press enter". So I went into BIOS and found that no drives were detected. I tried changing the cables around and came up with one hard drive being detected, however it isn't the one with Windows, but a back up.

    So I tried to test a few things, sata cable in the same slot and using the same power cable, I plugged it into the back up drive that had been detected and it was found, but using the same sata cable and power cable to plug into the main Windows hard drive, it was still not recognised.

    What can I do, does this mean my hard drive is pretty much dead?
    Thanks for any response.

  2. #2
    Member w2richwood's Avatar
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    use the same sata cable also they do go bad
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  3. #3
    Member kayson's Avatar
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    Have you tried brand new cables? I've found that my SATA cables tend to have a depressingly short life. Every 7-8 months or so, my hard drives "fail". I replace the cables and have no issue at all. Also try plugging the Windows drive into a different SATA port. A lot of motherboards have multiple SATA controllers, so you should have a number of options.

    I'd say its unlikely your hard drive just up and failed. Usually there are warning signs i.e. read/write errors in windows or strange noises coming from the drive. Your best bet is to try the drive in another computer if you have access to one.
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  4. #4
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    I didn't lose too much data for it was solely a C: base hdd but I did lose some minor personal info that I had saved on C:.

    Anyway, there was absolutely no signs of any kind prior to this morning, last night it was working just fine. I tried different cables and still wasn't any help. When both my drives were plugged in, I could only see the back up hdd via bios, and when that happens I get a different error saying "bootmgr missing, press ctrl+alt+del to restart".

    Like I said, didn't really lose much, just a little disappointed.
    I took it and test it on another computer and it still wouldn't detect it seems.

    Is there any way at all to recover from this?

    Thanks to all the replies so far.

  5. #5
    Member kayson's Avatar
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    Well you're getting the bootmgr error because it's trying to boot off the backup drive which has no OS and no boot record, so that's not a surprise.

    If the mobo all of a sudden can't detect the drive, I'd guess the logic board failed so your data might still be intact. Probably not worth the cost to replace it if you don't have a lot of data, though.

    Try checking your bios for a HDD detection timeout setting. If you increase it, it might be able to find the drive.
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  6. #6
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    sounds liek teh partition went poof, happened to me with a similar set up, your going to lose all your data trying to re-create teh partition on teh drive

  7. #7
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    Is there any chance the HDD that seems to have failed is still under a warranty? As kayson said, it sounds like the logic board may be toast. You can try searching ebay for a replacement, but that can be hit or miss. If you can get ahold of one that is good, you can always use it to back up the data on the drive (if it didn't kill the drive when it died), and set up an RMA if it is still under warranty. I have had to do this a couple of times with clients drives, and it has worked most of the time, and not worked only in a few instances. In some cases, the other local shops had used "White Label" drives, that had no brand name on them, so the best I could do was throw them out and replace them with a better drive.
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  8. #8
    Member kayson's Avatar
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    What motherboard do you have? And what's the HDD that failed?
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  9. #9
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    GO TO START-->CONTROL PANEL---->Performance and Maintenance--->Administrative Tools--->COMPUTER MANAGEMENT----->on your left side click on disk management. you will see your external hard drive just make it active "right click" hope that solves if not there are other advanced options let me know if the above answer does not solve the problem.
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  10. #10
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    I found that with some "ageing" hard drives, you have to set a "disk detect pre-delay" in the BIOS after a while. This gives the drive time to boot before the BIOS attempts to detect it. I would have done this first before touching anything

    Like the other guys said, the SATA cables can fail, as can the PSU 12v+ rails.

    If you plug it into a working Pc as a Slave drive and it still wont detect. Id open CMD, go to DiskPart, and run a "list volume" or "List disk" command, see if the drive loads there, you can then assign a drive letter, and make the drive active from the diskpart utility. Some times hard drives that wont detect are actually still alive but have a bad boot sector or messed up partition. So i always check the drives through DiskPart first.

    If you can get the drive to boot, and want to recover some data off it before throwing it out. Id only copy the "user data" folder as that holds all your Docs, Movies, Music, Desktop, etc. Unless you have moved these files to another location of course.

    If you want to remove the data off the drive before throwing it out, just go into disk part and run "format fs=ntfs", "clean", this will do a long format of the drive and remap the partition table, this should remove most of the data, the clean command removes the partition table and other things which should stop the drive from even showing in Windows Explorer.... or an easier way is to find a really big hammer and a sharp chisel.

    Hope some of this info helps....

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