Installing a SATA hard drive (WIN XP)

pkerr used Ask the Experts™
I am trying to install SATA Maxtor 120gb hard drive on Gigabyte GA-7N400 motherboard. I only have floppy disk and cd drive connected (secondary master on ide2)
My problem is that hard drive is not detected either during BIOS or by Windows XP (I have updated motherboard with latest Bios and hit F6 during setup and installed the ata controller driver si3112 (base configuration). I can't format the drive as it isnt recogised. There is power going to hard drive and the cables are connected so i assume that the problem is with the computer settings or drivers. I have computer set to boot first from floppy,then cd,scsi (sata). In standard BIOS mode IDE primary and secondary settings are at auto. In integrated peripherals, i have on-chip primary and secondary PCI IDE enabled. Also onboard h/w serial ATA enabled and serial ata function set as Base. Onboard RAID and LAN disabled.
I have tried every permutaton of settings but to no avail. I have also tried keeping the old ide hard drive and setting the sata drive as a secondary drive but the same problem occurrs. The SATA drive is not detected. I've also tried using windows 98 but same result.
Any help that you could give me would be much appreciated, i 've looked through many sites regarding this problem and alot of people seem to behaving similar problems with sata drives.

thanks pat
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I haven't looked at the Mother Board specs yet but does it support SATA drives?

Well I see that some of Gigabyte's do support SATA drives but I haven't been able to accertain if this one does.

Hmm that si3112 says it is a SATA RAID Driver so apparetnly this board does support SATA drives
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Hmmm in the manual it says

GC-SATA Card (optional) (  )
(Manual; SATA cable x 1; Power cable x 1)

I am not sure about this but doesn't a SATA drive require a special cable?

>>I am not sure about this but doesn't a SATA drive require a special cable?

Yes, a SATA drive requires a SATA cable.  Distinctly different, both visibly and electrically, from a parallel IDE cable.


Did you ENABLE the SATA interface in the BIOS setup?  I think this MB has both IDE and SATA, but if the SATA interface is disabled, it won't work.

the SATA interface should be called something like "onboard H/W Serial ATA" although it should be enabled by defualt, and it wont make much deference the problem lies somewhere else, and i cant find it, it would probably help if they put a "SATA 0 - 120GB" "SATA 1 - empty" info like they do with IDE's but for some odd reason these mb's dont have that, although i have the GA-7N400Pro2 so there might be some defference, hope someone figures it out soon cause ive got same prob.
When booting, hit f4 to enter the si3112 bios.  This is an important step.  

Actually, I'm having a similiar problem with an Abit KD7-G motherboard. It has two SATA connections. I installed a 120GB HD and DOES recognise that it's there, but it defaults to the RAID controller. Since I only have one HD, I cannot setup the HD in RAID. Obviously, a second HD would fix this, but I already spent my budget on the last HD, so it will be another month or so before I buy another. I bought the MB used and DO NOT have a manual :( I guess I should have known better but the price was good.
I will award points to anyone that has any usefull information, otherwise I guess I'll have to wait until I can buy another HD.

markmiracle  you will find your manual here:

Have you looked in the "Computer Management" section - Control Panel>Performance and Maintenance>Administrative Tools>Computer Management

Double click the Computer Management icon, go down to Storage on the left hand side>Disk Management

This should show you your SATA drive, it's current configuration, primary partitions etc.
Click in the area of the drive where it says something like "120Gb Unformatted", right click and choose "create partition"

It worked for me. I have 2 120 GB SATA drives but only formatted 30 Gig initially to install XP onto. I then had 90 gig unused/unformatted on one and 120 on the other.

remove the jumper behind the hd, that make sata not detected

I know a friend of me had same problem and to fix it try to install winXP SRV2.0
he bought  a new winXP serv pack 2 and it installed SATA as a third party software ..

Try it and let me know
A simple solution to your problem is to get yourself an Ultra 133 Serial Ata Serial Card or Serial ATA/150 interface which gives you up to 50% faster data transfer rates, your drive does have an serial interface, the cable for it is very small compared to the IDE cables. The Card should you no more than €18.00. Very easy to setup either while building your system or if the operating system is already installed.
18 dollers that should have read with the dollar sign
is it possible for someone to issue points to a person when you didn't start the topic? i am not sure that it is..but thanks for the thoughts Markmiracle :)

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