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setup did not find any hard disk drives in your computer

Posted on 2010-11-11
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
Dell xps 400. I boot the install cd (mce) and I get the error 'setup did not find any hard disk drives in your computer'.

Bios sees the drive. I put in another drive that was previously loaded on another machine so I could get to windows and upgraded the bios. still nothing afterward.

I have tried other xp os cds but all have the same issue.

I just tried another hard disk and still the same issue.

what am I missing? drives are sata and at sata0.

(do I need a driver to use a floppy on for the 'hit f6 to install driver' that appears during windows initial install?

thanks in advance
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Question by:Jamesey1
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jakethecatuk earned 500 total points
ID: 34114971
in the bios, have a look at the hard drive compatability mode and set it back to IDE
(can't remember exactly what it's called on DELL's.  the current setting may say something like SATA or AHCI)
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by:sagiamar
ID: 34115033
go to
 http://support.dell.com/support/downloads/driverslist.aspx?c=us&cs=2684&l=en&s=pub&os=WW1&osl=en&SystemID=XPS/DIMENSION%20400/9150&catid=-1&impid=-1

download the sata drivers, extract to floppy drive and use it in the 'hit f6 to install driver'  screen.
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Expert Comment

by:PowerEdgeTech
ID: 34115372
Just for future reference ... if you are after any performance increases, you should be doing as sagiamar recommended.  Setting the BIOS to dumb down SATA drives as IDE/ATA devices is an easy way around this, but doing so will turn OFF everything about SATA that makes it an improved technology over IDE - NCQ, cache, etc.  The best thing for you and your computer would have been download and load the following driver, and load it from floppy at the F6 prompt:

http://support.dell.com/support/downloads/download.aspx?c=us&cs=2684&l=en&s=pub&releaseid=R130118&SystemID=XPS/DIMENSION%20400/9150&servicetag=&os=WW1&osl=en&deviceid=8615&devlib=0&typecnt=0&vercnt=2&catid=-1&impid=-1&formatcnt=0&libid=41&typeid=-1&dateid=-1&formatid=-1&source=-1&fileid=173456

If you don't have a floppy or want an alternate method ... use nLiteOS.com to integrate the driver into your installation media.  Do this, leave your drive in SATA/AHCI mode and reap the benefits of 21st century technology.
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