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Why will my Thinkpad T61 Lenovo not allow me to install a new HDD & XP?

Posted on 2009-07-13
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Last Modified: 2013-11-17
Hi,
I have a T61 that I part use for work. It has an encrypted (Pointsec) 80GB Hitatchi drive. This weekend I decided to buy a 360GB Fujitsu drive from Maplin, and a spare cradle so that I could use my T61 as my home PC simply by swapping the HDD's over.

To start with I just placed the HDD in the T61, ran the Bios diagnostic test and all it passed. However when I placed my XP CD in, it could not find a HDD.

Thus I bought a SATA cradle, and no machine (Work DELL (XP), Sony Vaio (Vista) would see the HDD. Looked on experts exchange and realised that the 360GB drive was not formatted at all.

Used Vista "Manage" option and formatted last night to NTFS. When in the cradle, machines now see a 300GB drive.

When I placed 360 GB HDD back in the T61, ran the XP CD (Note T61 has Vista Business sticker), the CD (Genuine copy of XP) starts to run, but fails when you press "Enter" to install as it can't find a HDD.

I looked on Experts Exchange, and notice people talking of buying the Lenovo disks, or using Thinkvantage. If I restart with the 80GB HDD, I will not be able to get into most things as it's all locked down for work.

Can anyone suggest what I need to either change in the BIOS, buy to sort, try to test or is what I am attempting to do impossible?

Thanks

Ady
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Question by:arasburn
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Assisted Solution

by:dbrunton
dbrunton earned 50 total points
ID: 24837906
Is this a SATA drive?

If so look in the BIOS and see if you can change the settings for the drive from SATA to Legacy or IDE.  If the change is successful then try the install.
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by:noxcho
noxcho earned 200 total points
ID: 24837939
Also, in the same BIOS see if you can turn it from AHCI to SATA (or enhanced IDE) mode.
It could be that you need to feed the install process with HDD controller drivers first and XP installation could not see the drive without the drivers.
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by:arasburn
ID: 24837984
Dear "dbrunton" & "noxcho",

Mnay thanks for the speedy reply. I went into the BIOS & changed AHCI to Compatability (It was the only option). XP ran, and it has found my HDD. It is now formatting it, so will let you know if it works when it completes.

Thanks for help thus far!!!

Ady
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by:noxcho
ID: 24838099
Cool, glad to be helpful.
Take care.
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Iain MacMillan earned 250 total points
ID: 24838663
be careful when adding your 80GB IBM drive back in if you modified the BIOS settings for hard drive detection.  I have experience with Thinkpads, as its what use use in the office, and generally its recommended to use IBM/Lenovo drives due to the way they interact with the system, and how the recovery partitions are setup (also if its still under warranty with your company).

quick way to build a new system would be to clone your 80GB to the new drive, using Acronis (Ghost doesn't work, gets the partitions wrong), then use you blue button to activate the recovery partition on the new drive (don't boot to Windows), to do a factory restore, so you get all the T61 drivers and applications, otherwise if you manually install just XP, you will not have a functioning system, you will need to use another system to download all the applications and drivers for audio, video, LAN etc.
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by:arasburn
ID: 24838788
Dear all,

Firstly thanks to new answer from "IainNIX", I was hoping that when I put the 80GB back in, I could just change the AHCI back and it would work? Will give it a test later. THANK YOU.

I now have XP on the machine but as predicted lots of things do not work, no wireless etc. Looked in properties and network adaptor etc are all missing.

Have connected it with Ethernet cable to my router, but still will not pick up a connection. Does anyone know if I will be able to download T61 drivers from Lenovo site, or if I am hugely wasting my (and your) time!

In the meantime I inted to see if it can find any temp drivers on the XP set up disk.

THANKS IN ADVANCE

Ady
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Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 24838804
Isn't there a driver CD coming with your laptop?
Sure you must be able to download the drivers but not necessarily from Lenovo thought I recommend the Lenovo web site.
Here are some links: http://driverscollection.com/?H=ThinkPad%20T61&By=Lenovo
http://www-307.ibm.com/pc/support/site.wss/MIGR-67853.html
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Expert Comment

by:Iain MacMillan
ID: 24839371
Arasburn, you need to visit the Lenovo support site, and using IE (though i prefer FF) use the auto-detect function, so it makes note of your model & type of T61, you will then have manual access to the drivers and software for your system.

on another system to at least get a working network driver, i'm guessing here (use the original 80GB to note the make/model of your hardware such as Ethernet/wireless), as there are 40+ T61 combinations for Ethernet/wireless/audio.  

http://www-307.ibm.com/pc/support/site.wss/product.do?brandind=10&familyind=370153&machineind=0&operatingsystemind=53385&template=%2Fproductselection%2Flandingpages%2FbrowseByProductLandingPage.vm&validate=true - this is for T61 on XP for all models - fill out your type and model, on the sticker under your laptop, e.g. 26346-FG4

Once you have the Ethernet driver, you can copy to a USB stick and transfer to the new build you have.  It should be an Intel chipset on the laptop for wireless and Ethernet, but not always the case (http://www-307.ibm.com/pc/support/site.wss/document.do?lndocid=MIGR-67829)

Also get the System Update package, as this is what's used to monitor and update all Lenovo/IBM software (assuming you have the original installed first).
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