Hi folks can anyone give me a clue here please?
My BIOS seems to have given up being able to run two drives from it’s only IDE/PATA port. When I try to put two on, it takes forever to do the auto-find, and then comes up with gibberish for the slave drive, or finds none. Could the BIOS have got corrupted? The machine was originally shipped with the CD/DVD and a 120Gb drive on the same cable, but now no go. I have two cables, and have tried both with no improvement. I have no money to buy another cable :(. Strangely, I was working on a friends PC the other day and HIS machine has similar probs. I have been building PC’s for about 20 years, and am used to changing HDD’s no problem, using jumpers in the old days Master/slave etc. but this has me foxxed! My BIOS is v.0907. There is a more recent one out but the changelog says that the only difference is updated support for a wider range of more modern CPU’s. I would rather not reflash if not necessary, the danger of bricking my only MB is too scarey. My friend also has an ASUS MB, his runs a Pentium, mine an AMD Athlon.
Hi folks can anyone give me a clue here please?
wakou adjusted his/her tinfoil beanie to write:
> Hi folks can anyone give me a clue here please?
> My BIOS seems to have given up being able to run two drives from it’s
> only IDE/PATA port. When I try to put two on, it takes forever to do
> the auto-find, and then comes up with gibberish for the slave drive,
> or finds none. Could the BIOS have got corrupted? The machine was
> originally shipped with the CD/DVD and a 120Gb drive on the same
> cable, but now no go. I have two cables, and have tried both with no
> improvement. I have no money to buy another cable :(. Strangely, I was
> working on a friends PC the other day and HIS machine has similar
> probs. I have been building PC’s for about 20 years, and am used to
> changing HDD’s no problem, using jumpers in the old days Master/slave
> etc. but this has me foxxed! My BIOS is v.0907. There is a more recent
> one out but the changelog says that the only difference is updated
> support for a wider range of more modern CPU’s. I would rather not
> reflash if not necessary, the danger of bricking my only MB is too
> scarey. My friend also has an ASUS MB, his runs a Pentium, mine an AMD
The only times I have seen this is when “both” drives are set to master
or slave are you using 80pin cables or the old 40pin?
If 80 then have you tried the drives set to cable select?
Nil illegitimi carborundum
Oh yes! tried all combo’s Master/slave/cable select. I have
80 pin cables.
Some brands of drive don’t work well with other brands when on the same cable!
I used to have issues with Conner drives and Maxtor as far as I remember.
But if one drive is standard ATA and the other is an ATA2, that might explain it. There are different interface speeds that can cause real headaches.
Also try setting both to cable select, see if that helps.
One drive is the CD/DVD, the other a Seagate HDD, both on cable select, 80 core cables, both set to CS. the machine was shipped like this!
I have now updated BIOS, and seem to have some progress, in that I can get the CD drive to run as MASTER (CS, black plug) and the HDD to run as SLAVE (CS Grey plug), but NOT the other way round. This is far from ideal.
Hmm, what happens when you have just the one hard drive?
I would be tempted to pull the whole machine apart and start with a minimum config and see if you can find the problem that way.
Also maybe keep the power supply and RAM in mind for possible problem areas.
If you can borrow those parts from a friend or shop for testing that might help.
I’ve never heard of a BIOS being corrupt, but maybe try a “load defaults” (which you probably already have done!).
Check the connector on the mainboard for a bent pin (clutching at straws here).
Dirt or bugs on the mainboard can also play havoc, use a paintbrush and compressed air if you can to give it a good clean, you never know your luck ;).
I have often had the same issues. Almost always I have found the problem to first be incorrect jumper settings, followed by a failing hard drive, followed by two devices that simply will not work together on the same IDE channel - but that is extremely rare.
First though, I just wanted to say putting an optical device on the same IDE channel as a hard drive is very, very bad. You will limit the speed of the bus to the slower device. I would really recommend you put the optical drive on another channel (which I don’t think you have available) or buy an inexpensive IDE to USB adapter ($10 on ebay) and attach the optical drive externally via USB.
However, to get it to work internally - you mentioned you could get the optical drive recognised as master. What about swapping them on the cable position and playing with the jumpers more? I have also often noticed you can just NOT use a jumper on a device to force it to be a master / slave - though this behaves differently on different drives.
Almost every time I have seen this, taking a long time to recognise the devices, showing garbage on the BIOS POST screen, it is resolvable by changing device order and jumpers. But there are MANY possible combinations - 18 I believe? 32 If you include not using a jumper on one devices?
You could also clear the BIOS by removing the battery and / or using the clear BIOS jumper. But I really don’t think that will help much.
Good luck on resolving this - and if you can, do try to move the optical drive off the same channel. Those adapters are pretty cheap.
Cheers Peter and Growbag.
Re-flashing the BIOS seems to have done something (?) I now have them Set by Jumper to HDD Master CD/DVD Slave, and all seems well (ish) I do not know if going back to the old way and not using CS damages performance at all?
I have taken your point about mixing drive types on the same channel, but I have NO MONEY AT ALL! If I did, the best investment would be a new SATA CD/DVD, as mine is old and starting to refuse to write DVD’s and be very fussy about writing CD’s, prolly full of fluff and dust etc…
> Cheers Peter and Growbag.
> Re-flashing the BIOS seems to have done something (?) I now have them
> Set by Jumper to HDD Master CD/DVD Slave, and all seems well (ish) I do
> not know if going back to the old way and not using CS damages
> performance at all?
> I have taken your point about mixing drive types on the same channel,
> but I have NO MONEY AT ALL! If I did, the best investment would be a new
> SATA CD/DVD, as mine is old and starting to refuse to write DVD’s and be
> very fussy about writing CD’s, prolly full of fluff and dust etc…
No impact on speed - all the necessary select signals are set so it’s just a
matter of which ones the drives use. CS is a halfvast attempt at plug&play
that sometimes works. BTW, application of a vacuum cleaner to an opened
CD/DVD drive will work wonders <g>.
Did you get it working wakou?
Not properly, Growbag. I have now flashed the firmware on the CD/DVD drive. It seemed to work properly, and then gibberish appeared in the BIOS screen. I wonder if maybe the CMOS battery is failing?? Tho’ IIRC, the first sign of this is the Time/date failing. Very annoying this happening whilst trying to install Linux, it is painful enough rebooting 20 times a day without seemingly random hardware issues in the mix. I am now trying to boot a mini iso from a USB key, and install from HDD, thus being able to take the CD drive out oof the equation completely for the time being. I am getting stuck on that as well though, check out today’s posts later for details!
Hmm, I would be looking at the capacitors on the mainboard, especially the big ones around the CPU or power connector.
Getting gibberish on the BIOS screen is NOT a good sign, sorry to repeat myself again but if all the caps look good (no rounded or obviously open tops on them), then I would be looking at RAM, video card (same ram if it is an onboard one), CPU and heat sink seating and proper application of thermal compound (has it been removed recently, or has the compound dried out?), both CPU and power supply fans, and of course trying another power supply to see if that fixes it.
I know you said that you have no money, and I sympathise there, can you maybe hit a friend up for borrowing at the least a power supply?
I honestly think the drives going weird and the corruption on the screen are symptoms of some hardware (impending) failure.
The best sign of capacitors failing is the machine not posting sometimes when you power it on, ie you have to reset or power on/off a few times to even get the first BIOS screen to show up.
Thanks GB, you’ve made my day!
I really don’t think it is that serious, there would be more symptoms, I am sure. I just think the DVD drive is getting cranky and old like its owner.
lol, sorry I didn’t mean to scare you ;).
But I would definitely check those capacitors, that costs nothing but a little time :).