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MAXIMUM NUMBER OF HARDDRIVES ONE CAN INSTALL IN A PC

Posted on 2007-03-17
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WHAT IS THE MAXIMUM NUMBER OF HARDDRIVES YOU CAN INSTALL IN A PC?
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Question by:ROBERT2765
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18 Comments
 

Expert Comment

by:Binaryquasar
ID: 18742600
Should only be limited by space in your tower. Windows has drive letters from A to Z most of them can be set to a valid partition on any hard drive. open your case and see how many slots your PC has. one point. when installing new hard drives make sure one is  set to master, ALL others set to slave. the instructions should be on the back of your hard drive.
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Author Comment

by:ROBERT2765
ID: 18742613
WOULD THE MAXIMUM INCLUDE ANY USB HARDDRIVES?
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Expert Comment

by:Binaryquasar
ID: 18742638
you can have unlimited USB external Hard Drives they all mount to a letter automatically when they are plugged in. so you can store unlimited data you just cannot access it all at once.
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Accepted Solution

by:
younghv earned 672 total points
ID: 18743253
ROBERT2765 -
I do not believe that is a correct answer.
For IDE or SATA connections (Primary and Secondary) you can have only 2 hard drives on each (total of 4).

There are some methods for increasing beyond this, but you get into some huge calculations for power usage and quite a few other limitations.

I am going to put in a request for this question (and answer) to be reviewed by the Page Editor and a Moderator.

Vic
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Author Comment

by:ROBERT2765
ID: 18744681
ok
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LVL 66

Assisted Solution

by:johnb6767
johnb6767 earned 664 total points
ID: 18745672
I think some clarification needs to be added here as well....Each IDE controller needs to have a master and a slave, not a single master fot the PC, and all others a slave. Vics suggestion to this, being only 2 per controller is correct.

Also, as Vic has pointed out, there is additional considerations needed. I usually start with a minimum of 350w power supply, and then add 50 watts for any drive past the first one.

You can add more than 4 obviously, but you would need addittional IDE/Sata controller cards to meet the physical connections, and of course couple that with increased power, and you should be ok.
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 18745678
WOULD THE MAXIMUM INCLUDE ANY USB HARDDRIVES?

Actually, the USB BUS is only capable of a maximum of 127 devices, so technically there is no way to have unlimited devices, but for most intensive purposes, again, you can adda lot of them...

I would agree to having this PAQ reopened, so that the proper answers can be granted, so future searchers of this site will have accurate info...
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Assisted Solution

by:Binaryquasar
Binaryquasar earned 664 total points
ID: 18746537
OK But for his purposes yes, and most PC,s do not have enough slots to be an issue, the exceptions are mostly servers hotswap drives etc. I have worked on some with 8 drives. the power options are usually resolved in any case capable of holding that many. ie a mid tower holds only 2 or 3 usually you can add more but you have to physically alter the frame, tie in extra cables to the motherboard etc.. if you want to do this you would undoubtedly have thought out power requirements. the servers I worked on had two or more, but they were Designed to hold many hard drives. I am just Reiterating what I said before, IT DEPENDS ON THE CASE any case that can hold 10 will probably have the fans power sources  motherboard etc, to work with that many. as to john's comment, I was talking about drives mounted 1 or 2 at a time not at once, read my answer more closely "you cannot access all at once." to have 127 devices connected at once you would require that many ports, as far as I know. Also anyone who wants to mount 127 devices had better have a lot of space, hard drives are not small you know
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Expert Comment

by:Binaryquasar
ID: 18746541
To be more clear on the usb issue. if you have 300 thumb drives and mount them one at a time they can all mount to the same device you still have 300 drives but only can open one or two at once. Im sory for being verbose but I am frustrated, maybe I was unclear, I must restate this ANY COMPUTER DESIGNED TO RUN MANY DRIVES AT ONCE WILL COME WITH THE HARDWARE TO DO SO FROM THE FACTORY. YOU can tell this from the case. pant pant sigh!
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 18748525
I wasnt trying to argue, just trying to answer in clear terms. When someone asks a sumple question, you dont know thier level of expertise, and I was simply trying to add my thoughts in clear terms, without assuming anything.....

Sorry if I upset ya....
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Author Comment

by:ROBERT2765
ID: 18750589
THANKS IT WAS ALL INFORMATIVE
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Author Comment

by:ROBERT2765
ID: 18817671
OK
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Expert Comment

by:younghv
ID: 18943222
All of my previous comments still apply.
Vic
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 18943966
I second that, for mine as well....

:)
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