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Old 12-24-2008, 10:14 AM   #1
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Default Solve my computer problem or face the consequences!

FWIW, I have been involved in the computer industry for more than two decades. I have done "Geek Squad" type work as well as owning my own ISP and doing the tech support for 1,000 users. This problem has me baffled so I am looking for some help. Please don't explain to me what CS is or how to jumper a drive. I am not a newbie - just very curious about this problem.

Dell Optiplex GX620 with newest bios (A11):

Three HDs - drive #1, #2, and #3. 1 is a 500GB, 2 is a 500GB (identical to #1), 3 is a 320GB (different brand). Using CS on the drives there are 6 different combinations of drive configurations (1 primary and 2 secondary, 1 primary and 3 secondary, 2 primary and 1 secondary, 2 primary and 3 secondary, 3 primary and 1 secondary, 3 primary and 2 secondary). The Dell bios will only recognize two of those combinations. All three drives are working and function great by themselves but when you try to run two of them together they will not work (except in a certain order). It doesn't matter the order because I can grab three more HDs or a CD/DVD Rom and have similar issues.

Other info:

-This is a bios problem - the OS isn't even loaded

-I have swapped out IDE cables with similar results

-I have jumpered as Master/Slave with similar results



Any ideas?
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Old 12-24-2008, 11:10 AM   #2
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Have you loaded RAID drivers to the machine...most Dell's (in my experience) don't have those loaded.
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Old 12-24-2008, 11:28 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by boardboy330 View Post
Have you loaded RAID drivers to the machine...most Dell's (in my experience) don't have those loaded.
Nope, but it wouldn't matter. It fails at the bios. No drivers would be activated by the OS (if that is what you are saying).
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Old 12-24-2008, 11:37 AM   #4
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So i'm guessing there are two IDE ports on the MB and you are using HD 1&2 on IDE1 and HD3&CD/DVDrom on IDE2??? I'm just trying to understand your setup more clearly.

FWIW, if you do a google search about raid drivers, most computers stop recognizing drives if they are removed or missing.
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Old 12-24-2008, 12:02 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by boardboy330 View Post
So i'm guessing there are two IDE ports on the MB and you are using HD 1&2 on IDE1 and HD3&CD/DVDrom on IDE2??? I'm just trying to understand your setup more clearly.

FWIW, if you do a google search about raid drivers, most computers stop recognizing drives if they are removed or missing.
Oh, I should have explained better. The MB only has one IDE port but 6 SATA ports. In my testing both drives are were put on the IDE port with either an 80 pin or 40 pin cable (used 5 different cables including the one that came with the machine <G>). I've given up trying to get the CS or Master/Slave to work on the IDE port with two drives and have just started using two of the SATA ports for drives. This has severely limited me on what I wanted to use the machine for so I have another computer sitting there for stuff like burning DVDs, etc.
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Old 12-24-2008, 12:39 PM   #6
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I know you know how to jumper drives, but some drives have different jumper combinations if they are to be the only drive on the channel.

i.e. some drives have different jumpers for "Master" and "Master with Slave"
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Old 12-24-2008, 01:03 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by SloS13 View Post
I know you know how to jumper drives, but some drives have different jumper combinations if they are to be the only drive on the channel.

i.e. some drives have different jumpers for "Master" and "Master with Slave"
These were the standard "jump pin 1 for master, no jumper for slave" or whatever. I even tried several different jumpers just to see if I had one that wasn't making a good connection <G>.
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Old 12-24-2008, 01:24 PM   #8
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try forcing m/s instead of using cs
nevermind i see you tried that, give up
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Old 12-24-2008, 02:11 PM   #9
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what, no digital photos of the jumpers/sticker on the individual drives and bios screens?
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Old 12-24-2008, 03:50 PM   #10
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what, no digital photos of the jumpers/sticker on the individual drives and bios screens?
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Old 12-24-2008, 07:36 PM   #11
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Your problem seem interesting after reading the manual for your dell, It seems the IDE port is only used for CD/DVD Roms and not ment to be used for IDE HardDrives maybe this could be part of the problem, In saying that why don't you just bite the bullet and use the SATA ports and and a few Sata drives and only use the IDE for the CD/DVD ??
or contact Dell and see what they have to say and if there is a bios update

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Old 12-24-2008, 08:01 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by drbogg View Post
Your problem seem interesting after reading the manual for your dell, It seems the IDE port is only used for CD/DVD Roms and not ment to be used for IDE HardDrives maybe this could be part of the problem, In saying that why don't you just bite the bullet and use the SATA ports and and a few Sata drives and only use the IDE for the CD/DVD ??
or contact Dell and see what they have to say and if there is a bios update

Dr.
Post #5:
I've given up trying to get the CS or Master/Slave to work on the IDE port with two drives and have just started using two of the SATA ports for drives.

I have not contacted Dell yet (past experience leads me to believe they are all morons) but I do have the newest bios. There was something on their website that said something about removing all IDE devices and reloading the default values in the Bios but that did not help. The problem is that I have a stack of 20 IDE drives here. Do I just throw them away?
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Old 12-24-2008, 09:15 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmcelwee View Post
Post #5:
I've given up trying to get the CS or Master/Slave to work on the IDE port with two drives and have just started using two of the SATA ports for drives.

I have not contacted Dell yet (past experience leads me to believe they are all morons) but I do have the newest bios. There was something on their website that said something about removing all IDE devices and reloading the default values in the Bios but that did not help. The problem is that I have a stack of 20 IDE drives here. Do I just throw them away?

Use one of these;
Newegg.com - SYBA SD-ATA133R PCI IDE Controller Card - Controllers / RAID Cards

disclaimer: i never used that model.

I am running one in my desktop perfectly fine. I am using SATA for my boot drive.
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Old 12-24-2008, 10:01 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmcelwee View Post
I have not contacted Dell yet (past experience leads me to believe they are all morons) but I do have the newest bios.
Well called on both points.

I assume you are using an 80 wire IDE cable?
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Old 12-25-2008, 12:56 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by supersaiyan93 View Post
Well called on both points.

I assume you are using an 80 wire IDE cable?
I've tried two sets of both...
(80 and 40)
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Old 12-25-2008, 06:59 AM   #16
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After rereading your first post i am a bit confused are you saying you trying to run 3 hard drives off one IDE port ??.


Dr.
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Old 12-25-2008, 08:13 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drbogg View Post
After rereading your first post i am a bit confused are you saying you trying to run 3 hard drives off one IDE port ??.


Dr.
Nope, just two:

"All three drives are working and function great by themselves but when you try to run two of them together they will not work (except in a certain order)."
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Old 12-25-2008, 07:27 PM   #18
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ok i am not sure why your board is doing what its doing, but here is a it of a cowboy fix that may allow you to use your IDE hard Drives this fix will allow you to keep the boards ide port for the CD/DVD Rom. Just use a SATA to IDE converter these things are cheap and you can get them on Ebay if need, I have added a link to one i saw on ebay, I think this maybe the easiest solution for you.

http://cgi.ebay.com.au/PATA-IDE-To-S...1%7C240%3A1318

or this
http://cgi.ebay.com.au/IDE-100-133-H...1%7C240%3A1318

Cheers
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Old 12-26-2008, 02:10 AM   #19
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Im confused how are you connecting IDE hard-drives to SATA? Converter?

If so, you gotta set the drives to master if you use converters.

If you are connecting the drives to the IDE and they are not recognized chances are the bios just cant handle drives that large.
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Old 12-26-2008, 02:51 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saml01 View Post
Im confused how are you connecting IDE hard-drives to SATA? Converter?

If so, you gotta set the drives to master if you use converters.

If you are connecting the drives to the IDE and they are not recognized chances are the bios just cant handle drives that large.

His problem is he can't run his IDE drives the way he wants, they work ok as a single drive but i think he wants multiple drives but he can't get it to work he has the lastest Bios so that can't be the problem for hard drive Size, And he wants to use the Ide drives he and does not want to buy more SATA drives when has these Spare IDE ones, i suggested that he use a Converter that way he can use his ide ones still and get the benifit of multiple drives ?? i think that makes sence lol lol

Dr.
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