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Hard Drive Not Recognised

Posted on 2011-03-04
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I have a Toshiba Satellite P300-160 notebook running Vista HP. When turned on I can access the BIOS and the hard drive shows up and is set as bootable. However, exiting the BIOS nothing whatsoever appears on the screen after that. I can't even use PC-Check as the same blank screen appears.

I can run PC-Check with the hard drive removed and have tested everything else with it and no problems are reported.

I have removed the drive and can access it in another machine without problem. I have run HD Tune, Easy Recovery and Chkdsk, all without anything turning up.

Installing a new hard drive into the Toshiba everything boots as it should. I'm guessing that I will have to replace the drive but is there anything I have missed here that I could try?
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Question by:alfaro
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Expert Comment

by:PietMuis
ID: 35035833
Boot up with Vista DVD and do a repair or format and reinstall?
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Author Comment

by:alfaro
ID: 35035875
That's the thing, if the hard drive is in place I can't boot from a DVD, or even a USB pen, come to that. The screen remains blank..
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by:PietMuis
ID: 35035923
have you formatted this Hard drive in another machine?

Is your boot order in the BIOS correct? It does not maybe have the HD as the 1st boot device?
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Expert Comment

by:lancecurwensville
ID: 35035943
In the bios, is the HD set to Sata or AHCI?  This "shouldn't" cause an issue like you are experiencing, but changing this might cause it to boot at least to a point where you can troubleshoot/make changes such as mbr /fixboot
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by:Jeff Wight
ID: 35035984
If you can access the drive when it's attached to a different system, then the drive itself is probably ok - it's just the boot record.  You can repair that by booting to a Vista install DVD.  There should be a key sequence - usually just tap <F12> as you power up - to access the boot menu (so you can boot to DVD instead of the HDD).
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Author Comment

by:alfaro
ID: 35036030
I can't boot using key combination while the hard drive is installed in the Toshiba. However, it is possible to boot with a disk in another computer then switch to that drive and then run bootrec.exe /fixboot and fixmbr. However, there is still no sign of anything on the Toshiba screen when I replace the disk.

I'll give the Sata/AHCI option a go shortly...
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Author Comment

by:alfaro
ID: 35036098
I've just tried the AHCI/COMPATIBILITY option and it makes no difference.

Also, I should have said that I can bring up the boot options using F12 and the hard drive appears as it should, along with the cd and usb, etc options. However, selecting any of these options just brings up the blank screen again...
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by:PietMuis
ID: 35036168
and with another HD installed in the machine you can boot from these devices?
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by:lancecurwensville
ID: 35036173
I've never tried this, but in theory it should work, if the MBR is really what is causing the issue.  pull the HD, put it in a usb hard drive enclosure of some type.  Boot a live ubuntu cd and run the fix boot command on the now usb drive.
http://www.arsgeek.com/2008/01/15/how-to-fix-your-windows-mbr-with-an-ubuntu-livecd/
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Author Comment

by:alfaro
ID: 35036910
Yes, another disk starts to boot ok. Regarding the second point I've already written another boot sector as mentioned above..
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Author Comment

by:alfaro
ID: 35038053
I have tried using Acronis to clone the whole drive to a new hard drive. It completed successfully but the result was exactly the same, no display beyond the manufacturer's logo screen then just blank.

I have now wiped the drive and that has at least allowed me to start reinstalling Vista as normal. Looks like I'll just have to update things and copy the backed up data back manually...

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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 35042145
>>   It completed successfully but the result was exactly the same  <<  that's normal - because it is identical...

what exactly do you want to do now, since you said another disk boots fine?
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Author Comment

by:alfaro
ID: 35043144
A new installation of Vista is now running fine.
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 35043350
any more problems then?
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Accepted Solution

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alfaro earned 0 total points
ID: 35043427
None at all. Everything is running as it should..
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Author Closing Comment

by:alfaro
ID: 35178781
sorted myself..
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