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Help with "newer" computer not recognising IDE drives

Micom 2000

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Mar 6, 2004
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This of course doesn't belong on a vintage forum, but since this section elicits off-topic posts, I thought I'd attempt to mine the considerable computer minds here.

My most modern computer quit on me. It has a Gigabyte GA-700N motherboard with an Intel 1.8 CPU. It's a dual-core CPU. At first I thought it was a drive failure but fortunately my 80g hdd(my biggest) was OK (It has a lot of un-backed-up stuff on it). I had installed W2k on it previously after the Mother-board completely choked on numerous attempts at a W98 install but W2k worked fine for a while. I eventually got it functioning with a w98 FDD boot disk. It does recognize the Atapi CD drive but won't recognise any of the known-good IDE HDs I tested. I tried on both IDE sockets one which is colored green.. I can only imagine the IDE controllers aren't loading. A totally new experience for me. And of course the W2k cd copy has now decided to display faults which it didn't display when I installed it on the Gigibyte and wouldn't install on my IBM 300PL so I could possibly use that HD to suss out the problems , since it couldn't read some obviously necessary install files. Perhaps I could also use a cd or USB boot if it installs the USB drivers from the BIOS and replace the missing files. Aarrrgghh ! !

So at the moment I'm reduced to using this 233mhz IBM PS350 i'm using to post this. One of the problems being with major sites either choking on it's 64mb memory as they download all their garbage, causing it to freeze, or informing me they require a newer browser on which this W98 computer isn't capable of installing, or else waiting interminably for the page to load. The "trailing edge" penalties have been indelibly imposed on me by the IT giants.

So has anyone here ran across this IDE controller problem and found a way of repairing it ? Assuming that I can either get a new copy of a W2k or repair the one I have, or somehow re-install the IDE controllers using DOS ?

Lawrence
 
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wolfie

Experienced Member
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Jul 1, 2009
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187
Location
ontario
usually no 2 problems are the exact same when it comes to computers and hardware. have you made sure the drive is master? mabe add the cd drives as a slave to the hard drive.

a p2 with 64 mb of memory. that must be slow. i have a p2 400mhz with 768mb of memory that runs XP pretty good.
 

Micom 2000

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Mar 6, 2004
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Location
Manitoba North of 50 degrees Latitude
Well the cd was originally the slave of the HDD and the BIOS still recognized the Atapi CDD. I tried multiple configurations, including the master hdd and CDD on separate connectors, each being master and all the variants, all with known-good HDDs. The BIOS always recognises the CDD but won't recognise any IDE hd. It has to be some sort of failure with the HD controllers. More likely with controller drivers in the BIOS since it recognises the CDD. A DOS boot also showed no hdd . I'd try one of those old ISA CDD controller cards with the HDD port(s), but unfortunately the MB has no ISA slots. Possibly a non-ISA SCSI card with SCSI peripherals might work since the SCSI card BIOS's load at the top of the boot-up sequence to my knowledge. I have some SCSI HDDs and a SCSI cd.

Lawrence
 
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Tetrium

Experienced Member
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Jan 27, 2010
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299
Location
Netherlands
About the W2K, you could try to either download a W2K iso file from somewhere (or make a copy from a friend, provided it is the same version you have, OEM or Retail) and use your current W2K key on it.

My first thought is, check your motherboard to see if any of the capacitors are bulging. If they look ok, I'd replace the power supply with a (powerfull) known good one. You'll need a PSU with good values on the 12V rail but hearing your background story for a bit I don't think you have a lot of spare PSU's laying around.
Another thing you could try is to swap out the IDE cables or try different molex connectors for the hard drives, preferably from a different cable coming from the PSU.

If you decide to swap out the PSU, make sure it's 12V value is the same or higher then the 12V value on your old PSU.

Atleast thats what I would do...
 
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