Dell Dimension cannot see IDE harddrive

Customer's Dell Dimension 4600 had boot problems. (see:  http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Windows/XP/Q_23099845.html ). I'm now trying to reinstall Windows to a new hdd. Using a new SATA drive and booting from the Dell disk gives a blank screen and blinking cursor. The drive is new and seen in the BIOS.
I assumed the SATA controller had a problem, so instead installed an IDE hdd. This is also seen in the BIOS, but likewise boots to a blank screen and then reboots endlessly. The mobo is a Dell specific which I assume will be hard to replace.
Any ideas of what I could try to get this guy's pc back to life, short of replacing the board?
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phototropicAsked:
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phototropicConnect With a Mentor Author Commented:
Sorry, I forgot about this question.   The problem was solved by a new motherboard...
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phototropicAuthor Commented:
Sorry. The title of this question should read "cannot BOOT..." not "cannot SEE..."
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nobusCommented:
here a good guide for installing XP :  http://www.michaelstevenstech.com/cleanxpinstall.html

you did set your PC to boot from cd ?
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phototropicAuthor Commented:
Yes, the BIOS is booting from the CD first.
Thanks for the link to Michael Steven's site.
I'm reasonably familier with the process of running Windows setup,  My problem is that even if I f12 at startup and select the CD Rom drive to boot from, nothing happens. I have tried three seperate disks and three different Rom drives, each booting to either the SATA or IDE hdd. My question was:  is there any way forward with this short of replacing the mobo? The board is a generic Dell model which I'm guessing will be hard to replace.
Thanks for the quick response.
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nobusCommented:
use F2 or Del key to enter setup, then set the cd as the drive to boot from, in boot, or boot priority section
if still no boot, swap both ide cables (or set the cd drive on the disk channel - mind the jumpers)
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nobusCommented:
use F2 or Del key to enter setup, then set the cd as the drive to boot from, in boot, or boot priority section
if still no boot, swap both ide cables (or set the cd drive on the disk channel - mind the jumpers)
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phototropicAuthor Commented:
CD Rom is the first boot device. I have swapped out both drives and cables. Frankly, it looks hopeless without replacing the board...
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nobusCommented:
no- i meant the cable with the cd drive on the connector where the disk is, and vice versa..
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Pete_ZedCommented:
Are there any BIOS updates for your Dell PC? Possibly the PC doesn't like the size of the hard drives you are installing?
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