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HDD Controller Failure

Posted on 1998-10-16
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Last Modified: 2010-04-26
I am trying to build an computer of spare-parts that I have at home.
It is an 486DX33 with only a Trident VGA (512KB) and a Multi IO Card installed. I have an 80MB IDE Harddisk (as master) and an 5 1/4"  Diskdrive connected to the Multi IO Board.
When I boot up the Computer I get the message
"HDD Controller failure, Press <F1> to continue"
and the Computer does not boot up by Harddisk. If I insert  an bootable Floppy disk, th computer boots up and I can access the Harddisk as C: without problems.
I have already written a new master-boot-record, have cross-checked the BIOS- settings and activated the Partition on this Harddisk with fdisk.
Also I tried another IDE-Controller, but I had the same error.

What can I do to make the computer boot up with my HDD?
What is wrong that this error occurs?

Thanks alot.
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Question by:PFranz
10 Comments
 
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by:arunm
ID: 1126985
Are the jumpers set correctly on each drive? ie. Indicating master and slave drives?

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by:arunm
ID: 1126986
Sorry, master only in this case
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Author Comment

by:PFranz
ID: 1126987
Yes, I have checked them.
As slave there is no error, but I connot boot with the drive.
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Expert Comment

by:martyn_bannister
ID: 1126988
PFranz

Is the BIOS set up to AutoDetect the size (tracks * cylinders) for the HDD? If so, has it done so correctly?

If the answer to the above is yes, can you read and write files when you have the drive configured as a slave and don't get the error?

Have you checked the BIOS to ensure it isn't set to boot from the floppy only?

If you can it, _could_ be that track 0 is physically damaged - when you format the disk and/or do a SYS command on it does it report any errors?

Norton Utilities should tell you if the boot track is OK, if you can get hold of a copy (magazine disk recently?)

If all else fails try changing the IDE cable.

LMK HYGO

/\/\artyn :-)}>-===



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Expert Comment

by:MATTCEI
ID: 1126989
-Please confirm that the drive is jumpered as neither master or slave,but as single drive.By the way,what manufacturer?

-Confirm mainboard jumpers are set for 'DX',not 'SX'.

-Is the drive slow to go ready? Try CTL-ALT-DEL (NOT reset or power) after it fails.

-What does Fdisk's 'Display Partition Information' show?
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Expert Comment

by:cgrey
ID: 1126990
Turn off any 'quick boot' or 'skip memory test above 1MB' options in CMOS. If you do not get any error reports from chkdsk or scandisk, I suspect (as I think MATTCEI does) that the system is completing it's POST before the drive has come up to speed.
Also, If you have a copy or Norton's handy, use the diskinfo program to make sure that what the drive is reporting as real CHS is matching what you have set in BIOS. If you don't have Norton's, there are a couple of free ide drive reporting programs on the net I've seen floating around.
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Expert Comment

by:RoadWarrior
ID: 1126991
*smile* some older hard drives are a pain in the neck, will not work as a slave to any but the same type of drive, you will either have to set the 5 1/4 as master and the other as slave, or use a secondary hdd interface and have one on each both jumpered as master, also if you have a ready delay setting on your i/o card jumper it for the max delay which on mine is 600 ms.
Some manufacturers define the SP jumper postiton as not storage position, but slave present, so if you jumper sp on the master drive as well as the master jumper and sp on the slave drive, that may work. If you tell the make and model of your drives i might be able to come up with an exact config. *Smile*

Road Warrior.
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Expert Comment

by:ljd1965
ID: 1126992
I know this might sound silly but..
there is a program available through Western Digitals website called wddiag.exe and it scans your computer for hard drives and then labels, corrects problems, etc.
I had a real bad time with losing two of my drives and spent weeks trying to access these drives.  I stumbled on this little goodie and now can access all my drives.
It is made specifically for WD drives but works with all.
When you boot up with floppy into dos - run program and go from there.
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Accepted Solution

by:
elc_music earned 100 total points
ID: 1126993
My dear friend,
I understand you have only 1 HDD.
if this is true, it should STAND ALONE and NOT MASTER !.
try jumperring this way.
I dont know the brand of HDD you have, but on WD the jumpers should be out (ALL),
on seagate the setting for master or stand alone is the same.
ELC.
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Author Comment

by:PFranz
ID: 1126994
Thank you, it was the solution to my problems.
Thanks to all the other comments, that provided additional information I could use to pin the error down.
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