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Laptop Hard Drive

Posted on 2004-09-29
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
I purchased a Seagate 40gb laptop hard drive hoping to upgrade a old Toshiba Tecra 8000 that has a temperamental 8gb hard drive.  Unfortunately, it seems that there are different pin connectors on this drive.

Could someone tell me if it is possible to purchase an adaptor of any kind to allow me to install this hard drive?

Many thanks,
Andrew
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Question by:Andrew14302
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 12184905
You DID check for an adapter on the hard drive, right?  Most laptops have their own customized adapter for connecting a standard laptop hard drive to the laptop.
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by:pjcrooks2000
ID: 12185706
I doubt it Andrew and if there was an Adaptor it would probably cost more than the drive itself.

I recommend you get onto Ebay and buy one for your Laptop and sell the one that is not for your Laptop.  That way you will incur the least amount of expense.

good luck

pjcrooks2000
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by:Auriclus
ID: 12185807
It seems likely that you have a 40 pin 40 wire IDE cable.  The newer drive probably requires the new standard of 40 pin 80 wire IDE cable.  You can purchase this at any computer store.

Good luck,

Auriclus
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by:rid
ID: 12188111
Most laptop drives are standards-compliant. The all have the same pin arrangement (if we're talking 2.5" drives) and they reside in a casing or tray that is laptop-specific. Usually you need to take the tray apart to get the old drive out and then inser the new drive. The tray includes a connector that is the adapter between laptop and hard drive proper.

Usually, that is.... maybe Toshiba has gone for a more user-unfriendly solution.
/RID
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by:mcp_jon
ID: 12188119
Check Leew's opinio, I have a Toshiba and it brings an attached adapter with the disk !

Best Regards!
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Author Comment

by:Andrew14302
ID: 12196557
Thanks for the replies so far.

I am not sure I understand Leew's comment.  Where should I check?

The Seagate drive did not come with an adaptor.  The drive that came with the laptop was in an enclosure.  On it, is a sticker to not take it apart.  

What should I do?
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 12196875
Short answer - Take it apart.  In the enclosure is ALMOST CERTAINLY a drive just like the one you bought.  POSSIBLY thicker, or thinner by a few millimeters, but otherwise just like it.  You can then put your new drive in it's place with the adapter.

WARNING:  IF YOU HAVE A WARRANTY ON THIS LAPTOP, YOU WILL LIKELY BE VOIDING IT BY TAKING THE DRIVE APART.

That sticker is toshiba's way ensuring you go to them and pay $$$$ in the event you want to upgrade or have to replace the drive
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 12196878
To be CLEAR - Take apart the enclosure - DO NOT take apart the replacement drive - and do not take apart the enclosed drive any more than taking it out of the enclosure
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by:pjcrooks2000
ID: 12197688
Hang on a minute what sort of enclosure is it in?  
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by:erahs
ID: 12206898
If you don't have a warranty..I agree..take the case apart.

Before taking it apart, you need to do some homework:

1. Ring or email Toshiba customer service or technical support to check about the warranty?
(If you have a warranty...obviously you would have replaced the drive by now)

2. Ask Toshiba customer service or technical support for the *exact* part number
for the casing for Tecra 8000.  Then check with official Toshiba parts suppliers
if they sell the casing separately and how much it costs. It should
cost less than an actual drive which is in the casing.  You can also do a further search
under froogle.com if you reside in the US, to get an idea of prices.

After this you can get down to business:
You say your hard drive is temperamental
(not sure precisely what you mean) but I assume there is a problem
with it...therefore you need to replace it. So if you took it
apart-the worst is you might damage
the casing. This is very unlikely.  However, if you damage the casing
you just need to buy that part from a Toshiba parts supplier
and put in your new hard drive.

If you are wondering what casing: Your existing hard disk
doesn't look exactly like the hard disk you bought...
it has a case.  Either plastic or metallic. Some have screws,
some are just plastic cases, which have to be prised apart.
Nb: how you can see the printed cirtuit board on one side of your hard disk.
When you open up the casing: voila...the enclosed hard disk will look exactly
the same.

By the way, it is nice to have two hard disks enclosed by Toshiba casing.
So, you can use the temperamental one for experimentation purposes..
ie if you want to play around with linux, you can format this drive under linux...and
swap back and forth with your normal drive. Remember your tempremental drive
could crash anytime: so don't keep important data on it, without backing it up.
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by:Blue_Rishi
ID: 12211119
Just replaced a 6Gb 2.5" hdd on a toshiba sattelite pro 4290 with a 20Gb 2.5" IBM drive and it used the same (standard) interface. I think my laptop is slightly older, but I can't imagine toshiba suddenly changing hdd interfaces...

Blue Rishi
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by:Blue_Rishi
ID: 12211125
and yes, you'll need to remove the hdd from the casing and put the new drive in it. btw, have you checked if a 40Gb is supported by the bios of the laptop?

Blue Rishi
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Author Comment

by:Andrew14302
ID: 12214402
Thanks for all the responses.  I was thinking of trying to take apart the case, since the laptop is no longer under warranty.  

How do I check if the BIOS will handle a 40GB hard drive?

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Expert Comment

by:erahs
ID: 12215685
You don't need to worry if the bios handles the HDD before installing it. If it doesn't handle it...the operating system wont be able to format the entire 40GB as a single partition thats all.

If the computer doesn't accept 40GB...it is very likely that the latest bios update would enable the laptop to accept the Hard drive.

Have a look at this link http://uk.computers.toshiba-europe.com/cgi-bin/ToshibaCSG/download_bios.jsp?service=UK&banner_id=0000004e7e
to search for the bios for your computer (I think the latest version is 9.30). Check if version matches the bios on your computer.  By the way: If you do have to update the bios, make sure you select the correct one-as stated on the site because one of them is only for the Tecra which has a CPU over 500MHz.  Be careful when updating the bios. Make sure you use the correct one for your laptop and follow all instructions provided-For example don't update the bios without connecting directly to the mains...etc.

It is simpler than you think. You shouldn't have any problem. Just go for it. You only need to be careful when updating your bios...if you need to.

Like Blue Rishi, I updated my hdd for a Pentium II laptop and coincidentally it was 40GB too. It works really well. Feel like I have a whole new laptop.
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Expert Comment

by:cyclamene
ID: 12259060
Check out this website:
http://www.cablestogo.com/product_list.asp?cat%5Fid=906

Part #:17705

I use these in OEM panel PCs' and they work very well.

Cyclamene
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by:Blue_Rishi
ID: 12275442
the relevant bios limitations here are the 8.4Gb and 32Gb boundries. My older laptop (bios date 2001) supports 20Gb (maybe more). So even if it doesn't support the full 40Gb, you should be able to use 32Gb. The easiest way to find out is to try or to contact toshiba. And, as stated by erahs, flashing to the latest bios version could help to if the bios doesn't support the whole 40Gb.

Blue Rishi
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