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stevesumner
17-04-2006, 02:01 PM
I have recently had to reinstall XP and decided to move it to my old IDE drive as my SATA drive is a bit rackety (Seagate Barracuda 7200 200GB).

My Bios gives me no options to select the IDE as first boot disk so always tries to boot the SATA drive first. So now I have to manually go into the bios (F12) and select the IDE drive to boot from. How can I get the IDE drive booting all by itself? I have tried fixmbr and fixboot before but last time I used these the whole installation got screwed up and I had to reinstall again. I have used Acronis OS Selector in the past but worry that this may have been the thing that screwed up the fix using fixmbr, I can't tell now.

Also, if using fixmbr is the key, how do I use it with anything other than the recovery console from the cd as this takes at least 5 mins to boot up each time.

stevesumner
17-04-2006, 02:08 PM
I just found this in another forum (http://www.neoseeker.com/Hardware/faqs/kb/15,24.html)

"If you are running other ide hard drivers you will want to disable them in the bois first so that windows won't recognise them during set up because by default windwos set up will want to write the mbr to ide 0 masters"
(with a few spelling corrections...)

Might try turning off the IDE in the bios and then use fixmbr...

stevesumner
17-04-2006, 03:32 PM
Nup, that didn't work, any suggestions?

Speedy Gonzales
17-04-2006, 04:16 PM
Are both the SATA and IDE onboard?? The option for you to boot from IDE should definitely be in the BIOS.

So at the mo, XP is on the IDE and the SATA?? The only prob is booting from the IDE??

stevesumner
17-04-2006, 05:34 PM
At the moment XP is on the IDE and there is only data on the SATA. MY Bios options are to change the drive sequence to floppy, CD, or hard drive. The SATA always comes up as the master. If I turn the SATA drive off in the bios the machine boots fine, but obviously I would like to have access to the SATA drive so I keep it turned on.

My machine is a Dell Dimension 4600 Bios revision A12 which is the latest as far as I can find at the Dell website.

Speedy Gonzales
17-04-2006, 06:04 PM
It sounds like power or the ide cable isn't connected to the IDE hdd?

Are you sure the power to the IDE hdd is connected.

Is this the manual for your system? (http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/systems/dim4600/en/4600i/OM/G72790LRs.pdf)

If it is, did u do this?

Changing Boot Sequence for the Current Boot

You can use this feature, for example, to restart your computer to a USB device such as a floppy drive, memory key, or CD-RW drive.

1 Turn on (or restart) your computer.

2 When F2 = Setup, F12 = Boot Menu appears in the upper-right corner of the screen, press <F12>.

If you wait too long and the operating system logo appears, continue to wait until you see the Microsoft Windows desktop. Then shut down your computer (see page 18)and try again.

The Boot Device Menu appears, listing all available boot devices. Each device has a number next to it.

3 At the bottom of the menu, enter the number of the device that is to be used for the current boot only.

Changing Boot Sequence for Future Boots

1 Enter system setup (see page 82).

2 Use the arrow keys to highlight the Boot Sequence menu option and press <Enter> to access the pop-up menu.

NOTE: Write down your current boot sequence in case you want to restore it.

3 Press the up- and down-arrow keys to move through the list of devices.

4 Press the spacebar to enable or disable a device (enabled devices have a checkmark).

5 Press plus (+) or minus () to move a selected device up or down the list.

stevesumner
17-04-2006, 07:44 PM
Appreciate your help but perhaps you misunderstood me (or I misunderstood you...) At the moment to boot to XP I am doing as you describe, hit F12, choose IDE drive etc, that is what I was trying to say in my first post about manually selecting the drive from the bios.

When I enter setup (bios, whatever), I can change the boot sequence and press space to enable/disable drives as you say, but there are only three devices, floppy, cd-rom and hard drive c:. I can't select only the IDE drive to boot

I assume the power must be connected to both drives as I can boot the IDE drive and access data on the SATA drive.

The only way I can see to fix this is to clone the OS back to the SATA drive.

kwaka
18-04-2006, 01:11 AM
Can the machine boot OK with the Sata drive disconnected? does the BIOS then see only the eide drive? Been a while since I've had to work on a Dell but it seems strange that, as you say, it gives no options in the BIOS to save the boot order as eide drive first

stevesumner
18-04-2006, 12:34 PM
Yes, if I disconnect the SATA drive then windows boots no problems, reconnect and try to boot and I get a little flashing cursor and nothing happens, ctrl + alt + del and then hit F12 and choose IDE drive from list to boot into Windows again.

I would rather not have to manually choose the IDE drive each time I boot.

Should I take some pics of the bios options and paste them here?

Speedy Gonzales
18-04-2006, 12:46 PM
Should I take some pics of the bios options and paste them here?

Yup, if u can.

There's most probably an option in the BIOS (if u have XP), called Enhanced mode (P-ATA & S-ATA). If this option is in the BIOS, select it. And make sure RAID isnt enabled, if there's a RAID option in the BIOS.

What's the SATA on in the BIOS? 3rd or 4th Master (If ths option is in the BIOS).

stevesumner
18-04-2006, 01:07 PM
My Bios options:

Dell Dimension 4600 manual (http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/systems/dim4600/en/4600/sm/sysset.htm#1106634)

In the "boot sequence" there are only three options:

Floppy
CD-Rom drive
Hard Drive C:

Hard drive C: seems to be the SATA drive by default.

AS you can see from the above link Drive Configuration is as follows:

Diskette Drive A:
SATA Primary Drive:
SATA Secondary Drive:
Primary Drive 0:
Primary Drive 1:
Secondary Drive 0:
Secondary Drive 1:
IDE Drive UDMA:

Speedy Gonzales
18-04-2006, 01:39 PM
Leave this option on

SATA Primary Drive:

Displays SATA primary hard drive (if installed). The default is Auto.

These 2 may have to be on AUTO

Primary Drive 0: (This maybe the primary IDE).

Displays primary hard drive 0. The default is Auto

Primary Drive 1: (This maybe the SATA).

Displays primary hard drive 1 (if installed). The default is Off.

What header is the SATA connected to on the mobo??

Is the header on the mobo labelled (like 0,1, or 1, and 2)?

stevesumner
18-04-2006, 01:59 PM
SATA is connected to SATA 0 on the mobo. Do you think I should try SATA 1?
What difference would it make?

Anyway, here are some pics of my Bios:

Bios1 (http://www.geocities.com/majorstevie/bios1.JPG)
Bios2 (http://www.geocities.com/majorstevie/bios2.JPG)
Drivecfg (http://www.geocities.com/majorstevie/drivecfg.JPG)
HDdrivesequeence (http://www.geocities.com/majorstevie/hddriveseq.JPG)
bootsequence (http://www.geocities.com/majorstevie/bootseq.JPG)
startscreen (http://www.geocities.com/majorstevie/startscreen.JPG)
F12menu (http://www.geocities.com/majorstevie/F12menu.JPG)

That last pic is a bit hard to see but I believe option 1 is "Normal".

Cheers

Speedy Gonzales
18-04-2006, 02:30 PM
You could try the SATA in 1 on the mobo. I would also make sure the data cable and the power cable aren't kinked or something, or coming out.

And change sata secondary drive to hdd in the BIOS.

Then, see what happens.

stevesumner
18-04-2006, 03:19 PM
Tried that, same old story, Bios tries to boot from SATA and can't, have to ctrl + alt + del then hit F12, then choose option 3 from the list "Primary Master Drive"

Option 5 "Hard-disk drive C:" is the SATA drive.

stevesumner
20-04-2006, 10:27 AM
Well, in case anyone is interested, I fixed my problem by installing Linux on the SATA drive. Spent a few days figuring out why Grub couldn't get Windows to boot before I changed the bootloader to LILO and now it all works!!

If my stupid BIOS could allow me to select different hard drives to boot from I would have had no problems.

Anyone know if I can upgrade my bios for my MOBO which is a Dell Dimension 4600 model 02y832 current Bios version is A12.

Dell website has the A12 as the most recent but it is about two years old. I guess they are not updating this MOBO anymore?

evergreen97
07-02-2007, 06:01 PM
stevesumner - I definitely could use your help - are you still watching this thread / forum?

I have the exact same problem tonight (although how I got here is a little different). I am trying to add a SATA drive for expanded data storage, but this darn 4600 of mine (with A12 BIOS) looks to the SATA drive first for the OS and I can't seem to modify anything in the BIOS to tell it to look to the IDE first.

Did you fix this for Windows using some capability in Linux? Can you provide more detail to get me on the right path?

Hopeful - Joe

Rob99
07-02-2007, 11:46 PM
You only found a workaround, and a good reason to steer well away from DELL in the future.

linw
12-02-2007, 04:18 PM
I have an ASUS A8N-SLI mobo with both SATA and PATA drives but my BIOS has a section to select which HDD to boot from. Yours seems to have this, too, under Hard drive sequence. It has "1. System BIOS boot devices" - is there no lower level menu where you can select WHICH BIOS bootable drive?

stevesumner
22-02-2007, 03:36 PM
stevesumner - I definitely could use your help - are you still watching this thread / forum?

I have the exact same problem tonight (although how I got here is a little different). I am trying to add a SATA drive for expanded data storage, but this darn 4600 of mine (with A12 BIOS) looks to the SATA drive first for the OS and I can't seem to modify anything in the BIOS to tell it to look to the IDE first.

Did you fix this for Windows using some capability in Linux? Can you provide more detail to get me on the right path?

Hopeful - Joe

If you don't want to install an OS on your SATA, I think you will need to use a third party boot loader installed on your SATA to get your machine to switch to the IDE for booting. BootIT NG is free and may work for you, I believe there are quite a few free boot utilities that you could try. Acronis OS selector worked for me in the past but it's not free.

It's a real bugger that there is no simple option in the BIOS to do this, the only other way is to manually select your primary master drive (option 3?) when you boot up (Power on > Dell screen > press F12 to go to boot options > option 3 > enter)

Hope this helps.

Steve

BTW:

At the moment I have Vista installed on my SATA and XP on my IDE. A bit of a nightmare to get this setup booting properly, but I sorted it in the end.

If you are interested in how I got Vista setup to boot from the SATA and also be able to boot XP on the IDE (using Vista's bootmanager), let me know.

killercustom
16-02-2009, 02:47 PM
In reference to this subject .... I am having a similar problem .

I recently had a power supply quit on my Dell Demension 4600 desktop and the only other power supply that I had didnt have a Sata power connector so I had to install a IDE hard drive as well .
I installed windows xp from my CD installation disk and went to start windows . I get a Black screen with the following statement and it shows Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition twice .

Please select the operating system to start :

Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition

Use the up and down arrow keys to move the highlight to your choice .

For Troubleshooting and advanced start up options for Windows press F8
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

If I choose the 1st one , it loads windows xp and works fine

If I choose the 2nd one , it goes to another black screen stating :

"Windows could not start because of a computer disk hardware configuration problem .
Could not read from the selected boot disk . Check Boot Path and disk hardware ."

I dont have a clue as to what is going on and I desperately need help to square this problem away . I have even went into Bios and tried changing boot sequence and other things . What is this IDE Drive UDM ( I believe thats what it said ) on or off selection do ? I changed this and it didnt make any difference .

I am hoping I wont have to erase the hard drive and start from scratch again . I have spent the last 3 days updating my windows system and reloading all my other programs .

Thanks

Rob99
16-02-2009, 03:01 PM
You just need to edit your boot.ini file, no biggie.

Blam
16-02-2009, 03:05 PM
Go to msconfig, run>msconfig then select the "Boot" tab.
Click check boot paths

killercustom
16-02-2009, 04:53 PM
Well that worked to delete the bad file but :

After rebooting , it started up correctly but then a message came up telling me that the system configure utility was in "selective startup mode" and that I needed to change it to normal . But when I check normal it takes the sytem right back to the same problem that I had originally .

Blam
16-02-2009, 05:06 PM
There should be a check box you can tick when that message pops up, like "Don't launch or show system configuration utility when windows starts"

Tick that, make sure only the valid XP boot entry is there in msconfig, and you should be good to go:)

killercustom
16-02-2009, 05:14 PM
Thanks guys !

I had already checked that box you are talking about and no error message came back after another reboot :

So you are saying leave the system in "Selective mode" instead of Normal ?

Blam
16-02-2009, 05:44 PM
Yes.

killercustom
16-02-2009, 10:38 PM
Okay and ty Blam6

Can I ask you why we are leaving it on selective mode instead of normal ? Will it ever go back to normal on its own ? What you had me do , seems to be more of a bypass than a repair ... I am confused .

I am attempting to learn home computers and am depending on guys like you to help me learn .... and I do Thank you for taking the time . I worked for GM for 22 years as a diagnostic computer tech on automobiles so I have basic knowledge of the operating systems but home computers are a whole different world .

killercustom
17-02-2009, 01:59 AM
The thing that concerns me is that under properties of my local disk C\ drive , it shows only 32.8 GB's and the hard drive is a 80 GB drive .

killercustom
17-02-2009, 03:16 AM
My bad ... it is the 40 GB drive . The other IDE drive that I have has windows 98 on it and when I attempted to use it , it stated "not enough memory" . Dont know what that was all about , I have 2 Gbs of ram . But this other Hard drive is the one that is 80 GB , can I install it to the IDE harness , boot the computer with my XP disk in the CD drive and wont it allow me to delete the windows 98 partition and then install the XP program I have ? And also how do I tie the two drives together to give me extra storage ? I'd use the 80 GB as the primary and the 40 GB as my storage .

Blam
17-02-2009, 08:44 AM
Yes, you can boot from XP, then slave the 80gb drive then delete it in disk management.

Run>Diskmgmt.msc

Right click drive>Format

Format as NTFS

killercustom
28-02-2009, 12:24 PM
Yes, you can boot from XP, then slave the 80gb drive then delete it in disk management.

Run>Diskmgmt.msc

Right click drive>Format

Format as NTFS

I am not sure what you mean by "slave the 80GB" Is this something to do with the jumper pins on the back ?

Blam
28-02-2009, 01:23 PM
Yes, you need to set it to slave settings