Broken laptop hard drive, attempt to put in computer problem

Hi there,

I have a standard 2.5" tohsiba laptop drive thats broken, it clicks when trying to load Windows. So i am trying to get data off it.

I bought an adapater

with the idea of being able to put it in my computer connected to an IDE cable so I could then see if i can read the data

But, the adapater has no spare pins. All my IDE cables have a single missing pin, ie the hole is blocked up; so I can't attach the cable to the adapater without breaking one of the pins, and I don't even know which way round to put it.

Am I completly off base here? Any suggestions?
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friekedConnect With a Mentor Commented:
I have that same adapter.  I was able to do some searching around and found an IDE cable from one of my older computers that had all the holes open.  It worked like a charm.  There are also some IDE cables where you can punch out that last hole.  Tricky part is finding one or both of those.
AuriclusConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Hello ThePadders,

As stated above, the reason why you can't connect using the adaptor is because your hard-drive is using the newer 80-wire 40 pin IDE cable.  You need a 40 wire 40 pin IDE cable in order to use the adapter.  Ask at any computer stores for a 40 wire IDE cable, many of them still carry them.  If you can't locate one, then go to a user computer dealer or steal one out of an older pre-1998 machine.

You're existing hard drive should run just fine with the older cable, just not up to the same speed and standards.  You should switch your existing cable back after your have transfered the laptop hard drive.

I didn't want to say this, but technically you can break off that last pin that gets in the way since it's not actually going to connect anything to anything else.  Be sure you get the right one though and please only use this as a last resort if you absolutely can't find an IDE cable with all the holes open.
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cyrnelConnect With a Mentor Commented:
First identify the pinouts so your connections make sense.

The hard drive may or may not have a written notation for pin1. Position it flat, with the label on top, and with the pins pointing at you. There should be two groups. One group of 44 pins on the left, and another of 4 or so pins on the right. With the drive positioned in this way pin 1 should be the top right of the 44 pin group. i.e. X is pin #1

o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o X    o o
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o    o o

The adapter will have one or several orientation marks on it, depending on year & importer. (These are $2 bulk parts that other companies like Belkin package & markup hugely) Look for the words "2.5" HDD Adapter". On the same side, do you see "B" on the left end (corresponding to the black power cable lead) and 1 at the other end? The "1" designates pin 1 of the IDE cable. It also lets you know that end of the adapter (small side) is for pin 1 of the 2.5" drive.

The red stripe is "pin 1". The connector will also have a very small arrow pointing toward pin 1.

Now as for making a keyed IDE cable fit an unkeyed adapter, you can do as frieked said and dig through your parts box for an unkeyed cable, or take needle-nose pliers and break off pin 20 from the adapter. It serves no purpose other than to force proper orientation.

Positioned as so, with the pins pointing at you and power connectors on your left, pin 20 is the 10th from the right on the lower row:

o   o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
o   o o o o o o o o o o X o o o o o o o o o

Don't try to break it with one bend, but repeated bends back & forth being careful not to harm pins next to it.

Good luck!
I use a hot needle to melt my way trough if I need to open the hole on a cable...
Have a adapter like this (€ 7,50), make sure you connect it correctly to the 2,5" hdd! Connected my previous adapter the other way around and it burned up (hdd was ok though).

Blue Rishi
There should be a "1" on the adaptor near one of the pins.

Line the cable and the connector up with the red line on the cable next to the "1" and figure out which pin is extra.

Then bend the pin back (making sure it doesn't touch anything else.

Then plug them together, and iof you've bent the wrong one then hopefully you can bend it back and then do the right one.
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