low level format does not work on Seagate drive

Looking at a laptop, and the previous owner wiped all data clean off it.  Don't know what he used, but he also wiped out the FAT and the MBR.  Fdisk does not work because it does not see a drive, ditto for linux file utilities.  It is a seagate ultra ata (ST94011a) drive in a 1.4 ghz laptop.  Tried seagate drive utilities, and it sees the drive, but reports bad sectors.  It reports that there is no MBR.  I tried to low level format, but it does not start.  Any way I can bring this drive back?
queiraAsked:
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Dynamic1Connect With a Mentor Commented:
queira with the bad sectors and what you are describing bring the drive back. It is no good or one thing is for sure it is on its way out anyway. Bad sectors indicate its going to be shot soon if it isint already.
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Dynamic1Commented:
Try a win 98 bottdisk and set partition drive to active http://www.bootdisk.com
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complexymetronCommented:
Hi!

If there's no hardware error, fdisk should work properly: you just have to create at least one new partition. The missing MBR shouldn't be a problem, because fdisk creates a new one.
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TheTinkeringToadCommented:
Yep very true ive never seen a drive that did not have problems unable to do this.
You need to create a partition.
If you try to format without a partition it doesnt know what to do. If you are trying to install a os it should create the partition for you as you go through the process of where to install it.
If you only have one drive the os install utility will ask you how much space on the drive you want to use for the active os partition.
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queiraAuthor Commented:
It does not even let me get into fdisk, let alone set an active partition.  
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TheTinkeringToadCommented:
Im sure you did this but try again anyways. Make sure that the drive is connected correctly. Also make sure that the power hook up to the drive is connected. Once this is done make sure you see that the drive starts on bootup either via some sort of led or maybe even noise that your drive is powering up. Sounds more like the drive is not being detected by the mobo.
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Gaud-woCommented:
What error do you get when trying to get into FDISK then?

Glenn
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crazijoeCommented:
Dynamic1 is correct. If the HD has bad sectors, it could be on its last leg and on it's way out. I probably wouldn't wast my time with it. I don't think you can low level format a drive with bad sectors. I have tried this in the past and when head gets to that sector it will just hang and not do anything.
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Gaud-woCommented:
The bad sectors can be flagged as non-usable with the mfg's tools, though both above are right - you can never recover bad sectors, and once some appeared more will come along.

Check if it's still in RMA period on their website?

Glenn
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tomschillerCommented:
Try to reset your bios or at least re find your drive in bios set to USER not AUTO.

use this tool

http://www.seagate.com/support/disc/drivers/discwiz.html

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kiranghagCommented:
first of all make sure that the bios can see it..
if your cmos setup or bios bootup screen shows the hdd as detected, it could be your boot disk problem (virus on it, as well as your hdd)

try with another boot disk...
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queiraAuthor Commented:
Yup, it has had it. (Sigh) Thanks, though!
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