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Phdisk problem

Posted on 2002-05-01
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Last Modified: 2007-11-27
I have a ThinkPad 390.  I have just installed Win2000 on it.  The problem I have is a message in a red box that comes up shortly after power on.  This is the message:

< Save to Disk file not found
Save to Disk feature is disabled
Run Phdisk for information.
FILE: create new
PARTITION: consult manual
Hit any key to exit >

Then, at the bottom you can:  <ESC> to Resume, <F1> to setup.

I can hit ESC and it will boot as normal, so this message is just really little more than a pain in the butt, but I would like to get rid of it.

Here is what I have done so far:

-- Try all BIOS settings, including disabling power management
-- Flash the BIOS with latest update
-- Run Partition Magic to see if there is a hidden partition...there is none.
-- Remove any autoexec.bat and config.sys files (only blank ones were created by Win2000)
-- Researched the Internet to find out how to get rid of this irritating phdisk message to no avail.

Additional information:
This problem has NOTHING to do with the OS.  It was there before I installed Win2000 and would be there if I didn't have an OS.  Somehow, it seems to be written into the BIOS.  I imagine I could crack the laptop open and reset the BIOS, but I'd rather not go that route if there is another solution.  Any help is much appreciated.
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Question by:dvnobles
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stevenlewis earned 200 total points
ID: 6984777
Do you have the restore cd for the laptop?
this is for toshiba, but applies
http://user2.stritch.edu/~cbmhelp/phdisk.htm
also see here
http://www.picodirect.co.uk/support/faq_general.htm
What is PHDISK and what does it do?  
PHDISK is a Phoenix utility which allows you to a suspend data-to-disk feature. This is a power management feature. Once a PHDISK has been setup it creates a non DOS partitiion on your hard drive.
http://www.pa-business.co.uk/pb-utils.htm
more reading here
http://www.twinhead.com/pub/phdisk.txt
I don't know if the file is bios specific (phdisk.exe) so you may want to search the ibm site for it also
or see if you can disable the (power management) suspend to disk feature in the bios
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by:EricWestbo
ID: 6984967
Phdisk is a hibernation utility.  On the Thinkpad 390 Hibernation works ONLY in Windows 95, Windows 98 and Windows Me.

Disable hibernation in your power options & this should resolve the error.


let me know

/ew
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by:EricWestbo
ID: 6984971
if disabling power options does not resolve, try following the error message's instructions and simply run PHDISK... it'll probably turn off hibernation.

/ew
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by:stevenlewis
ID: 6985039
Thank you for summing up my post
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by:EricWestbo
ID: 6985052
not a summation... more of a clarification.  Main issue here is that the IMB ThinkPad 390 can not utilize PHDISK when running Win2k.  That's what's causing the error.

Didn't see you mention that, Steve.

:) have a good one!

/ew
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by:EricWestbo
ID: 6985053
(er... IBM, that is)
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by:stevenlewis
ID: 6985063
from the questioner
It was there before I installed Win2000 and would be there
if I didn't have an OS.  Somehow, it seems to be written into the BIOS.
I think the partittion is not there, hence the problem. I also think the error message is shown during POST hence the error message
Then, at the bottom you can:  <ESC> to Resume, <F1> to setup
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by:EricWestbo
ID: 6985067
dvnobles...

what OS did you upgrade from?  I'm assumig NT.

If not, I owe Steve a big smile & a hug.  :)
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by:dvnobles
ID: 6986280
Thanks so far guys.  I upgraded from NT, but OS is not relevant here.
One of the links you gave me Steve, had the phdisk executable so I may fumble with that to see if I can remove it.
There were a few comments to disable power management in the BIOS.  As you can see from my initial question, I've already tried all that is humanly possible in the BIOS except for wiping it out.
Everything I'm reading so far seems to still point to a hidden partition of sorts.  If Partition Magic doesn't see it, I don't know what will.  But I will try FDISK and see if anything shows up.  The battle rages on....
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by:EricWestbo
ID: 6986303
I have to contradict... OS *is* relevent here!

Listen, as posted earlier PHDISK is a hibernation utility.  On the Thinkpad 390 Hibernation works ONLY in Windows 95, Windows 98 and Windows Me.  

You had this problem earlier because on the Thinkpad 390, PHDISK doesn't work on Windows NT.  You have this problem now because on the Thinkpad 390, PHDISK doesn't work on Windows 2000.

Please give it a shot... disable hibernation in your power options & let me know if that works.


/ew
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by:dvnobles
ID: 6986378
Do you mean disable hibernation in Win2000?
I can guarantee that will not work, although it is easy enough to try.  The red-box error message appears with no OS installed. It appears about the time the computer is detecting the floppy at startup.  This is a laptop they use in the Executive conference room so I have to wait until they are not using it, but I will try these things when I get it.  Thanks.
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by:EricWestbo
ID: 6986506
Do this:

1. The hibernation file is located on the root of the C: drive and is named SAVE2DSK.BIN

 - Rename this file to SAVE2DSK.BAK

2. The line in the Autoexec.bat file that creates the hibernation file if it is not present is: "if not exist c:\save2dsk.bin c:\thinkpad\phdisk /c 134851 /f c: \thinkpad\yes"

 - Place a REM statement before this line

After reboot, if the error still comes up, you can back out of these changes with no problem.



For future reference, the Hibernation Utility Disk for the TP390 is available at:

ftp://ftp.pc.ibm.com/pub/pccbbs/mobiles/uttpbhib.exe
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by:EricWestbo
ID: 6986509
duh...

3. Disable hibernation in W2K

blah, blah, blah


/ew
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by:rid
ID: 6986697
I'll not argue with you guys, but on certain laptops this is a BIOS thing; "Suspend to Disk" option, which requires a partition big enough to swallow RAM contents. If the suspend partition is gone and the option enabled, there will be wailing.

Regards
/RID
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by:EricWestbo
ID: 6986735
always looking for more input, Rid... if it's one thing I'm certain of it's that I'm always at risk of being wrong.

I'm not trying to be argumentative about this (apologies if coming across that way)... just a bit adament.  I'll gladly eat my words if need be (have a habit of doing that).

However, every resource I've come across regarding PHDISK and the ThinkPad 390 clearly points to the fact that the hibernation state will not work on WinNT or Win2K and will generate error messages as noted by dvnobles.  He's worked through his BIOS settings ("I've already tried all that is humanly possible in the BIOS except for wiping it out.
") and is looking for an alternative.  Hence my suggestion.

If nothing else, I'll be humbled if proven to be incorrect & will have the opportunity to learn a bit myself.

:)

/ew
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by:dvnobles
ID: 6986747
Thanks Eric, but I've already been to IBM's website.  There are no Save2disk.bin, etc. files.  This computer was *formatted from scratch*.  Also, Win2000 does not use autoexec.bat...this problem seems to be one where this phdisk thing was enabled a LONG time ago perhaps the laptop had Win9x on it and then later with WinNT the hidden partition was wiped out (?) and now whatever it has integrated into the BIOS is still looking for that hidden partition.  These are all guesses, of course, but the only ones that make sense given the nature of the problem.

RID:  As far as I can tell, this is indeed a BIOS thing or a hidden partition so well hid that none of my utilities see it.  There seems to be no way of disabling the option you speak of. Do you know of a way?  I have disabled all Power management settings in the BIOS and have otherwise tweaked any and every setting in the BIOS to try to solve.
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by:dvnobles
ID: 6986753
Thanks Eric, but I've already been to IBM's website.  There are no Save2disk.bin, etc. files.  This computer was *formatted from scratch*.  Also, Win2000 does not use autoexec.bat...this problem seems to be one where this phdisk thing was enabled a LONG time ago perhaps the laptop had Win9x on it and then later with WinNT the hidden partition was wiped out (?) and now whatever it has integrated into the BIOS is still looking for that hidden partition.  These are all guesses, of course, but the only ones that make sense given the nature of the problem.

RID:  As far as I can tell, this is indeed a BIOS thing or a hidden partition so well hid that none of my utilities see it.  There seems to be no way of disabling the option you speak of. Do you know of a way?  I have disabled all Power management settings in the BIOS and have otherwise tweaked any and every setting in the BIOS to try to solve.
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by:rid
ID: 6986859
Well, y'all, I tried to use a disclaimer by saying "certain laptops". I don't think I'll make anyone eat anything in this matter... words or otherwise. To me the IBM model dicussed here is unknown, but I have come across this kind of "suspend" partition on other brands. In some BIOS:es there was an option to choose suspend to disk or suspend to RAM; this seemed to be a sort of lifeline thing that was supposed to save your work if the main battery folded. Very likely this function relied on O/S support to be of any use, so it may be an unholy alliance of BIOS and O/S that is acting up here. The suspend partition, however, was usually found as a "Non-DOS partition" in fdisk. If you can't find it with normal disk tools, I suspect it is gone. Well, I'll stop rambling and let you get on with it...
Cheers
/RID
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by:stevenlewis
ID: 6987467
I think the error message is being generated because there is no partition that phdisk needs to use. FRom what the question er posted, this error appears to happen during POST
dvnobles does the error message appear before the OS is loading?, right after it counts the memory?
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by:hnminh
ID: 6990546
should we try to run "fdisk /mbr" to take back a clean Master Boot Record? Read through comments make me doubt that there is something hiding in the MBR itself and calling for the missing partition at boot time!
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by:dvnobles
ID: 7009300
Steven, I'm throwing the points at you because you directed me to the only site that has the phdisk program.
I fumbled with the program which will not run under W2K, but will run under DOS.  It is asking me to create a 200MB partition, which I am thinking may stop the error from coming up, but I'm not willing to go that distance as I have recently configured this laptop for the Executive office and it is not worth the time to go back and reinstall at this point.  It is still a mystery to me where this message is coming from and how Phoenix BIOS somehow integrates itself (gulp) into the computers HD or BIOS.  This Phdisk thing is just a big pain in the butt and probably seemed like a good idea at the time.  I'm glad it is no longer in use.  I'm also willing to shave off 50 of those points for Eric for his excellent suggestions as well.  I know they split points here, but I don't know how to do it.  Thanks everyone.
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by:stevenlewis
ID: 7009831
dvnobles Probably a wise decision not to mess with it, if that's the only problem
good luck to you
Steve
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by:NetAdmin
ID: 7378561
Just as an FYI, I just removed this error message from my Sharp laptop by going into the BIOS, setting "Suspend data to:" to RAM, and setting "Auto Save to Disk" to disabled. This has eliminated the error on boot up, and I am not seeing any problems after this... Hope this helps.
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